keywords: Absorption, cell phones, health risk, heavy metals, keypads, toxins
The aim of this research work is to determine the levels of cadmium, lead and mercury in some keypads of cellular phones sold in the market within Zaria, Nigeria. The keypads of some cellular phones coded NK, TN, SS and LF were obtained from phones market within Zaria metropolis. Samples were digested with strong acids (mixture of H2SO4 and HNO3 ratio 1:1). The concentration of cadmium and lead were determined using Atomic absorption Spectrophotometer, while mercury was determined using cold vapour Atomic absorption Spectrophotometry. The results obtained showed that concentrations of cadmium in the various keypads were: SS (2.10±0.06 mg/kg), NK (1.90±0.05 mg/kg), TN (1.40±0.04 mg/kg) and LF (BDL); Lead concentrations were: SS (20.20±0.04 mg/kg), NK (26.10±0.04 mg/kg), TN (26.00±0.04 mg/kg) and LF (26.50±0.10 mg/kg); Mercury concentrations were: SS (160.70±0.15 mg/kg), NK (197.70±0.09 mg/kg), TN (140.60±0.04 mg/kg) and LF (156.60±0.10 mg/kg). The metals levels were found to be lower than the recommended standard given by the Directorate for the Restriction of Hazardous Substance (RoHS) for components of electronic products. Continuous use of these keypads can lead to greater absorption of the metals into the human body which can pose health risk. When cell phones are improperly recycled or end up in landfills, it can leak into the groundwater and bioaccumulate in the food chain causing detrimental damage to the soil, water supply, vegetation, animals and humans.
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