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Troubleshooting the Series 6100 - Part 4

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Fri, Feb 17, 2017 @ 09:35 AM

series-6100.jpg

Today, is Part 4 in our series on troubleshooting some of the common questions on troubleshooting the Series 6100. The full user and service manuals can be found here.

Part 1 looked at what to do if your display does not come up, while Part 2 and Part 3 focused on what to do if you are seeing issues with flow.

Today, we will look at how to troubleshoot ozone related issues, starting with what to do if you are requesting ozone and not getting any.

Let us know if you have a specific issue you'd like us to cover!

Note: Customers who work on their units accept the risks of working on machinery and are responsible for taking all proper safety precautions. If in doubt, contact our service department!

 

No Ozone Regardless of Command

  1. NEVER unplug the lamp while the unit is powered on. This can damage the circuitry. Remove the ozone generator cover to access the ozone generator PC410 board.
  2. Make sure all ozone calibration data (found in the SYSTEM mode) is valid and consistent with the last calibration.ozone generator 410.jpg
  3. For all ozone related issues, the next step is to check the steady state test points values on the PC410, TP10 (+15V), TP11 (-15V) and TP13 (+24V) using TP14 as the analog ground. In the image below, the ground is noted by the black arrow and the other test points by red arrows. These voltages are routed from the power supply to the PC412 to the PC410. So, if there is an issue with the voltage on the PC410, measure the respective TP on the PC412 (see Part 1 of our series).ozone generator 410 tp.jpg
    1. Assuming these numbers look good, while commanding ozone, you will next check the command test point for the ozone generator, TP4 on the PC410. This is noted by the blue arrow in the above image. It is a blue TP adjacent to the gain pots. The value depends on several factors, but should measure above 1 VDC.
    2. If the command voltage is not present, try a higher ozone command to be sure the command is not too low.
    3. If the command voltage and all steady state voltages are good, the problem may either be with the circuitry of the PC410 or the ozone lamp. If you have a spare lamp, you can replace the lamp to see if this corrects the issue. Be sure to only power on the unit when a lamp is plugged into the board. Contact us for additional assistance or to order replacement parts.

If you have verified these factors are all correct, and need further assistance, Contact us.

 

Check back next time as we look at troubleshooting of other ozone related issues!                  

Tags: Service, Troubleshooting, S6000

Troubleshooting the Series 6100 - Part 3

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Wed, Feb 15, 2017 @ 10:35 AM

series-6100.jpg


Today, is Part 3 in our series on troubleshooting some of the common questions on troubleshooting the Series 6100. The full user and service manuals can be found here.

Part 1 looked at what to do if your display does not come up, while Part 2 focused on what to do if you are seeing no or low flow from our MFCs.

Today, we will look at how to troubleshoot high or saturated flow as well as unstable blends or flow.

Let us know if you have a specific issue you'd like us to cover!

Note: Customers who work on their units accept the risks of working on machinery and are responsible for taking all proper safety precautions. If in doubt, contact our service department!

 

Unstable blends or flow from one or more MFC

  1. Begin by making sure your gas is hooked up to the correct input port/s. Check and adjust input pressures and verify they are stable. Although the MFC can adjsut for slow changing pressure, it cannot respond to pressure fluctuations that occur with less than ~ 10 sec cycle.
    1. In Flow mode, request the span of the MFC (100% point).Measure the response test point on the PC412. This will be TP2, TP4 or TP6 (white TPs for MFC1-MFC3 from top to bottom in the red circled area above) using TP8 as your ground. The response voltage should be stable.
    2. If the response voltage is changing at the same rate as the instability of the blend, verify the stability of the input pressure. Although the MFC can adjsut for slow changing pressure, it cannot respond to pressure fluctuations that occur with less than ~ 10 sec cycle.PC412 FLOW TP.jpg
  2. Once you have confirmed your input is correct, if the problem continues,remove all output connections to the system and try again. This will insure that the problem is not related to something downstream.
  3. Now that you have eliminated issues with the processing as well as at the input and output, you should check the power. Check out Part 1 of our series on the details of this testing. In addition to those test points,TP9(+5A), TP10(-5), TP11(-12) and TP12(+12) should be checked (the blue circle below). These steady state VDCs are used by the MFC ADC and DAC.          
  4. If you have verified these factors are all correct, most likely the issue is with the MFC itself. Contact us for help with the replacement or repair of the MFC.                   

 

Flow Rate Saturated Regardless of Command

  1. Normally, this indicates an issue with the MFC itself. We recommend verifying the voltages on the PC412, as outlined here.
  2. Contact us for help with the replacement or repair of the MFC or power supply.  

 

As always, we are here to answer any questions or concerns!

Next time we will cover what to do if you are not getting any ozone regardless of the command. Subscribe to the blog (look up top on the right) so you don't miss a thing!

 

 

Tags: Service, Troubleshooting, S6000

Troubleshooting the Series 6100 - Part 2

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Thu, Feb 02, 2017 @ 02:30 PM

series-6100.jpg

Today, is Part 2 in our series on troubleshooting some of the common questions on troubleshooting the Series 6100. The full user and service manuals can be found here.

Part 1 looked at what to do if your display does not come up. Today we will focus on your flow and MFCs.

Let us know if you have a specific issue you'd like us to cover!

 

 

Note: Customers who work on their units accept the risks of working on machinery and are responsible for taking all proper safety precautions. If in doubt, contact our service department!

 

Zero or low flow from one or more MFC

  1. Begin by making sure your gas is hooked up to the correct input port/s. Check and adjust input pressures if necessary.  Nominal pressure is 25 PSIG. Tube size for MFC1 should be ¼” O.D. minimum, 1/8” minimum for MFC2.
  2. Once you have confirmed your input is correct, if the problem continues,remove all output connections to the system and try again. This will insure that the problem is not back pressure related.
  3.  Try running the MFC in the CALIBRATE MFC mode to see if the problem exists there as well.  This will insure that the problem is not related to software processing if it does not run in this mode either.
  4. Now that you have eliminated issues with the processing as well as at the input and output, you should check the power. Check out Part 1 of our series on the details of this testing. In addition to those test points,TP9(+5A), TP10(-5), TP11(-12) and TP12(+12) should be checked (the blue circle below). These steady state VDCs are used by the MFC ADC and DAC.                              PC412 FLOW TP.jpg
  5. Assuming your power is not the issue, we now will look at the MFC itself. 
    1. In Flow mode, request the span of the MFC (100% point).Measure the command voltage to the MFC on the PC412 (see above). This will be TP1, TP3 or TP5 (blue TPs from top to bottom in the red circled area) depending on if you are monitoring MFC1, MFC2 or MFC3 respectively. TP8 is the brown analog ground test point for negative (black) meter lead, shown in the squared area above.
    2. If your command voltage is approximately +5V, measure corresponding MFC response test point on the PC412. This will be TP2, TP4 or TP6 (white TPs for MFC1-MFC3 from top to bottom in the red circled area above). Again, use TP8 as your ground. The response voltage should be very close to the command voltage.

    3. If the command and response voltage are both okay, it might be that the actual flow is just being displayed. This could be caused by corrupt memory, which can often be resolved by removing the memory chip, waiting a minute or two, reinstalling and the initializing the unit.
    4. If the command is good but response voltage is low or 0, there may either be a problem with the MFC cable or the MFC. Try swapping the MFC cable and repeating the test. If these things fail to fix the problem, the issue is most likely the MFC itself. You should contact us for assistance in getting this resolved.

    5. If your command voltage is NOT +5V, check the the MFC size setup. Press in the keys in this order to reasch the service menu: 9 F1 F2 F3 Menu. Arrow down to "Set MFC Size" and verify this matches your unit setup. You should also verify the calibration data for the MFC in the system mode to ensure that the values have not been changed since the last calibration. Environics sends a hardcopy of all data for reference. Contact us if you need them resent.
    6. If your command voltage is NOT +5V and you setup is correct, you most likely have an issue in the A194 assembly which contains the PC401 and PC412. You should contact us for assistance in getting this resolved.

 

As always, we are here to answer any questions or concerns!

Next time we will cover what to do if you are getting unstable flow from one or more of your MFCs! Subscribe to the blog (look up and on the right) so you don't miss a thing!

 

 

Tags: Service, Troubleshooting, S6000

Troubleshooting the Series 6100 - Part 1

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Wed, Feb 01, 2017 @ 10:30 AM

series-6100.jpgThe Environics Series 6100 Multi-gas Calibrator was designed to be the finest instrument available for producing highly precise mixtures of ozone and other gases. The Series 6100 automatically performs zero, precision, span and multi-point calibrations using NO, NO2, SO2, CO, 03, hydrocarbons and other gases of interest. The 6100 meets all U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requirements. The system consists of a single chassis supporting 2 thermal mass flow controllers (optional third MFC available) , an ozone generation module, a mixing zone, a reaction chamber for gas phase titration, and control electronics. Commands are entered from the front panel and displayed on a backlit 4 line by 20 character liquid crystal display. The instrument may also be remotely operated using contact closures or the RS-232 serial data interface, both are standard in the Series 6100.

Over the next week, we are going to review some common questions on troubleshooting the Series 6100. The full user and service manuals can be found here.

Let us know if you have a specific issue you'd like us to cover!

Note: Customers who work on their units accept the risks of working on machinery and are responsible for taking all proper safety precautions. If in doubt, contact our service department!

 

System display does not come up

  1. Check to see if the switch is illuminated. If it IS NOT illuminated,check your power cord connection and the power source voltage. We suggest the use of a power conditioner. You should also check fuses in power entry moduleon rear panel and replace if necessary.
  2. If the switch IS illuminated,
    1. Check that all cables and connections are secure. A loose cable to the PC406 can cause the display to not come up.
    2. Once you verify the cables are making good connection, you will want to check the steady state test points located on the PC412-1D. This is the rear board of the sandwiched boards on the right side of the chassis.
    3. Check TP14, (-15VDC), TP15 (+15VDC), TP16 (+5VDC) (all using TP17 for GND) and TP19 (+24VDC) (using TP18 for GND). These are all labeled within the circled area on the PC412.

      PC412 TP.jpg
    4. If any of these are absent, check the power supply voltages with the power cable disconnected from PC412 using the below diagram as your guide.

      power cable.jpg
    5. An absence of any of these power supply voltages suggests the need for a new power supply.

    6. If all power supply voltages are present, the issue is within another PCB or component and these will need further testing to identify the problem.

Next time we will cover what to do if you are getting low or no flow from one or more of your MFCs! Subscribe to the blog (look up and on the right) so you don't miss a thing!

 

 

Tags: Service, Troubleshooting, S6000

US EPA Released Sixth Year of Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program Data

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Tue, Oct 04, 2016 @ 01:10 PM


Today, the US EPA released the 2015 data under the Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program. The report details the sixth year of greenhouse gas pollution trends from large industrial sources.

Overall, reported emissions decreased by almost 5% percent from 2014, and 8.2 percent from 2011.  The more than 8,000 large sector facilities contribute about half of the total Greenhouse Gas emissions annually.

Capture-3.jpg

  • Power plants accounted for approximately 2 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide, which accounts for 30 percent of total U.S. greenhouse gas pollution in 2015. This is a declined of 6.2 percent as compared to 2014, and 11.3 percent since 2011. These ~1,500 plants are the largest source of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.
     
  • Second to power plants, petroleum and natural gas systems reported 231 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, down 1.6 percent from than 2014. Overall, however, this sector is actually up over 4% from the 2011 figures.
     
  • Most other sectors reported emissions reductions. The most significant declines were reported by the iron and steel sector and the production of fluorinated chemicals.  

The data can be used by businesses and communities to find opportunies to reduce pollution and wasted energy and to enjoy cost savings. The report can also be used to aid in the development of climate policies

To learn more, check out the GHG Emmissions page. You can also utilize the EPA's FLIGHT ( Facility Level Information on GreenHouse gases Tool), to "quickly and easily filter GHG data in a variety of ways, including by facility, industry, location, or gas." 


 

Tags: EPA, Air Pollution, air quality

Air Quality and the Paris Agreement

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Fri, Sep 09, 2016 @ 10:00 AM

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As we end the summer, this year is expected to be the hottest on record for the second year in a row. Climate change is on the forefront of President Obama's mind in his final months in office. Last week, he delivered paperwork commiting the US to reduce their emissions of greenhouse gas pollution to about a quarter below the levels from 2005 by 2025. Likewise, China , the leading producer of greenhouse gas, has committed to a halt in emissions by 2030. A large part of this decrease has been attributed to the reduction in coal consumption.

The Paris agreement now has been signed by 55 countries, responsible for over 55% of the global pollution, and it is expected to take effect this November. It remains to be determined how the agreement will be implemented. Clinton is likely to follow the lead of President Obama. It is less likely that Trump would continue on this path since he has voiced his opinion that global warming is not real.

Once it takes effect, countries are expected to self-regulate. This would include reporting levels as well as actions and activities that are being conducted to meet the agreed upon levels. While the UN is unable to enforce commitment to the agreement, countries that fail to live up to the standards could leave themselves open to embargoes or other trade related sanctions. In the end, following through on the agreement is entirely voluntary.

With the Paris agreement in the news, air quality monitoring will continue to be a key issue going forward.

 

To Learn More About the Environics Ambient Monitor Calibration Systems, click here.

Contact Us!

Tags: USA Emissions, EPA, Air Pollution, ambient air calibrator, Emission Standards, European Union Emissions

The Next Generation ROBD

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Wed, Sep 07, 2016 @ 09:50 AM


Environics is pleased to announce the release of the next generation ROBD, available now.

We manufactured the original ROBD (licensed from U.S. Navy under U.S. Patent Application No. 10/959.764) back in 2007. Since then, the units have been used worldwide for both research and training of pilots and flight crews. The newly released ROBD incorporates updates to suit the current and future needs of the users of the ROBD in the field.


 6202-1.jpgThe newly incorporated features include:

  • A new pulse oximeter with touch screen interface
  • Enter one flow rate for all altitudes between 40 and 80 LPM
  • Breathing bag is replaced with an internal reservoir, generating a faster refresh rate to the mask.
  • Addition of an inline Oxygen filter.
  • Pulse ox probe connection moved to the rear of the chassis
  • HRT is the only program type.

 

As always safety, accuracy and repeatability are of the utmost concern.

The 6202 uses Thermal Mass Flow Controllers (MFC) to mix breathing air and nitrogen to produce the sea level equivalent atmospheric oxygen contents for altitudes up to 40,000 feet. The MFC's are calibrated on a primary flow standard traceable to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The system introduces pressure changes and gas expansion as a function of altitude. Several safety features are built into the device: prevention of over pressurization of the subject's mask, prevention of reduced oxygen contents below those being requested for a particular altitude and an emergency dump switch that will supply 100% O2 to subjects. The software is menu driven.  Built-in self-tests verify all system component functionality before the operation of the system can begin. If any self-test fails the system will not operate. The system is designed to work with both bottled gases and gases produced by a Nitrogen/Air Generator (available separately).

Interested in learning more? Check out the ROBD data sheet.

Want someone to contact you for more information or pricing?

Contact Us!

Tags: Hypoxia, ROBD, hypoxia training, research

EPA and CARB Crack Down on Clean Air Violation by Volkswagen

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Fri, Sep 18, 2015 @ 03:02 PM

The US EPA announced on Monday that a notice of violation, or NOV, of the Clean Air Act was issued to Volkswagen. The EPA states that the model years 2009-2015 Volkswagen and Audi vehicles (4-cylinder diesels) included software that allowed the cars to evade some emissions standards.

epa_logo-resized-600Cynthia Giles, the Assistant Administrator for the Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, stated, “Working closely with the California Air Resources Board, EPA is committed to making sure that all automakers play by the same rules. EPA will continue to investigate these very serious matters.”

The NOV explains that these vehicles had software that turns on "full emissions control" only during automotive emissions testing and not during everyday use. This allowed the cars to pass the test but to emit NOx (nitrogen oxides) at up to 40 times the permitted allowance. The EPA defines this as a "defeat device" as it was designed specifically to evade testing.

This follows a 1.1 million dollar fine that Volkswagen paid back in 2005 when they failed to report the defect oxygen sensor that affected 199-2001 vehicles. These vehicles produced "thousands of tons of harmful pollutants including nonmethane hydrocarbons (NMHC) and carbon monoxide (CO). NMHC are key reactants in the production of ozone, a major contributor to cancer-causing smog." (Volkswagen of America, Inc., Agrees to Pay More Than $1 Million for Clean Air Act Violation, Release Date: 06/15/2005)

To read the full NOV, check out the full post on the EPA site.

Tags: EPA

Hypoxia in the News - Possible Cause of Small Aircraft Crash

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Wed, Sep 10, 2014 @ 10:34 AM

Hypoxia was in the news recently after a small aircraft went down near Jamaica. After initialing radioing for permission to descend from 25,000 to 20,000 feet due to an indication of an issue, all communication was lost.  NORAD tweeted that two F-15s were scrambled to the location and that hypoxia was suspected.  The military pilots reported the windows were fogged and the pilot was slumped in his seat, though breathing. The plane continued to fly on autopilot until it crashed north of Jamaica.

Hypoxic conditions can set in as low as 8-10,000 feet, but the symptoms often can go unnoticed until it is too late to react.  Military pilots, and more and more civilian pilots, undergo hypoxia training using the Reduced Oxygen Training Device with the hope that these early signs are recognized sooner so corrective actions (descent to 15,000 and taking in supplemental oxygen) can be taken.  Check out these past posts (here, here and here), to learn more about the effect that hypoxia has on both military and civilian pilots flying at altitude. 

But what causes hypoxia at altitude?  Here's a quick look at the science behind hypoxia.

Environment at Altitude - Pressure

Image of the top layers of the earth's atmosph...

Earth's atmosphere encompasses us with a gaseous envelope which rotates with the planet.   Commonly, it is said that as you go higher in altitude about the ground, the air is "thin."  This implies that there is a change in the composition of the air at altitude, which is not true.  The total blend of gaseous components (predominately nitrogen (78%) and oxygen (21%) remains the same.  What changes is the number of oxygen molecules per unit volume of air.  Why?  Because this is directly affected by pressure, which decreases as you go up in altitude.  So, while the same percent of oxygen is in the air, the actual value is highly lower.  A simple analogy would be that on the ground 21% oxygen is like 21 red marbles in a cup of blue marbles while at altitude, it is 21 red marbles in a bathtub full of blue marbles.

In addition to the change in pressure, the lower temperature at altitude affects the gases.  This effect is not as substantial as that of pressure, but is still important.  The heat comes primarily from the heat of the Earth, not the sun.  So, the higher up, the cooler it becomes (approximately 2°C for every additional thousand feet of altitude).

Science 101 - Gas Laws

A quick refresher of the main gas laws that will come into play.

Dalton's Law -  With constant temperature and pressure, the sum of the component gas pressures in a gas mixture will be equal to the total pressure of the mixture.  So, for our situation, since the percentage of oxygen in the atmosphere is 21%, we can calculate the partial pressure of oxygen at any altitude.  This is key since the partial pressure of oxygen available plays a critical role in determining the onset and severity of hypoxia.

Graham's Law - A gas at high pressure exerts a force on a region of lower pressure.  This can be simplified if you think of it as an attempt to reach an equilibrium.  If there is a permeable or semi-permeable membrane between two gases, and gas will move from the area of higher pressure to the area of lower pressure until equilibrium is reached.  All gases act this way and they do so independently in part of a gas mixture.  It's possible (and actually probably) to gases in a mixture moving in opposite directions across the same membrane.  In terms of the human body, this occurs to transfer oxygen in cells and tissues.

The Human Body at Altitude

Human lung

What does all of that mean in terms of an actual human in a plane at altitude?  Good question!

At sea level, the air that we breathe is at a pressure of 760 mm Hg, with the partial pressure of oxygen being 160 mm Hg (think of Dalton's Law, 21% of 760 mm Hg). By the time the oxygen gets to the lung, we are down to about 14% (106.4 mm Hg) oxygen and an increase concentration of carbon dioxide at a pressure of 41.8 mm Hg.  After sending the oxygen rich blood out to the rest of the body, the returning blood carries oxygen at only 40 mm Hg.  As we determined from Graham's Law, the oxygen will move from the higher pressure in the lung into the blood, where it is low while the carbon dioxide will move in the opposite direction.  This cycle (breath in oxygen rich air, oxygen in the lung moves into the oxygen depleted blood, carbon dioxide moves out of blood, breathe out carbon dioxide rich air) continues with each breath.

And at altitude?

Well, at sea level, the pressure differences that allow the transfer of oxygen are sufficient to cause the blood leaving the lungs to be almost totally (97%) saturated with oxygen. Move up to the top of Pike's Peak (about 14,500 feet) the oxygen saturation drops with the pressure to about 80% and symptoms of altitude sickness appear with any prolonged exposure.  At 25,000 feet, the partial pressure of oxygen in the lung is 14% of 281.8 mm Hg or 39.5 mm Hg.  This is LOWER than the pressure of oxygen in the blood returning to the lung. The transfer of oxygen is therefore interrupted, and a body in this circumstance will quickly lose consciousness.  In between these two altitudes, symptoms from mild vision issues to serious disorientation are seen.

Tags: Environics Inc, Hypoxia, ROBD, pilot training, hypoxia training, ROBD2

Custom System Focus - Explosive Gas Mixing and Dilution

Posted by Rachel Stansel on Thu, Sep 04, 2014 @ 02:24 PM

At Environics, all of our units are custom built for our customers' specific needs.  Customers who need to dilute/mix explosive gases often come to us for help creating highly specialized systems. Most often, this is in order to calibrate gas detectors or for research or calibration purposes.  To meet these unique needs, Environics designed a modified version of our Series 4040 gas dilution system which included a dual chassis design.

explosive gas mixerThe electronics enclosure includes the power supply and PC boards for controlling the Mass Flow Controllers (MFC) and direct acting solenoid valves in the second enclosure. The electronics enclosure connects to a computer via a 9 pin serial port connector and cable. The 4040 software, on the computer, communicates with the microcomputer board inside the electronics enclosure.

explsoive gas dilutionThe second enclosure is sealed and houses the MFCs, valves and components to support the enclosure purge. A continuous purge flows through the enclosure while it is running. This serves two purposes. The first is to carry out heat built up by the internal components. The second is to dilute any potential leaks that may develop. The gas plumbing inside this enclosure was vacuum leak tested to 1X10-8 ATM CC/SEC He.

In addition to continuous purge flow, the enclosure is pressurized to approximately 5” H20 while running the enclosure purge. This provides and indicator that the purge is activated as well as preventing any air leaks into the enclosure from outside. A safety vent was  added to vent the enclosure to atmosphere if the pressure inside the enclosure reaches 20” H20. This could happen if for some reason the purge vent becomes blocked or the pressure on the purge rotameter is too high.

The two enclosures are connected electrically via two control cables labeled MFCs and VALVES. An earth ground wire is connected from the electronics chassis to the aluminum mounting plate inside the purged enclosure. This safely discharges any static electricity that can build up in a system with flow.

Have a similar need or need help with another unique set of conditions?  You can contact us at (860) 872-1111 or here for more information.

Tags: Environics Inc, gas mixing, gas dilution, calibration, customer focus, explosive gas mixing, custom gas mixing system