Ulrike BRAUN - Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing


Nominated by DIN - Deutsches Institut für Normung

Research and investigation results in recent years show that micro plastics as a result of production processes, through the use of products and through the diverse processes of insufficient waste treatment, waste disposal or waste water management, as well as through thoughtless littering of plastics objects, are increasingly ubiquitous in the environment and in the animal world. The largest amount of micro plastic results from the degradation of macro plastic.

Food, feed, beverages can also be contaminated by various production steps and trade. The absorption of microplastics in the smaller micrometer and nanometer range in the human and animal organism, up to cell structures, as well as the excretion of microplastics could also have a potential impact for human health.

The qualitative and quantitative determination of the composition of microplastics in the various environmental compartments and in biota in the broader sense is the basic prerequisite for being able to observe and evaluate the release, shift and spread of microplastics from the source, to be able to determine a possible hazard potential and initiate regulatory measures if necessary.

Current and future standardization activities for the investigation of macro- and microplastics at ISO and CEN level are largely based on the work of Dr Ulrike Braun and colleagues.