The Environics, Inc. Post
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.
The 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.
The 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.
On June 2, following an announcement by President Obama, the US EPA presented the Clean Power Plan, "a commonsense plan to cut carbon pollution from power plant" with the stated goal of maintaining "an affordable, reliable energy system" while reducing pollutants that are harmful to people as well as the environment."
Throughout the US, power plant emissions account for roughly one-third of greenhouse gas emissions. Currently, there are no national guidelines to limit carbon pollution levels, though the levels of other toxins, including arsenic, mercury, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particles, are restricted. In the US, CO2 emissions account for 82% of all green house gas emisions, according to data reported by the EPA from 1990-2012.
Although the mandate is set at the federal level, the guidelines give states the ability to establish their own internal goals and to design a program based on their specific needs and capabilities. These plans must be submitted to the EPA by June 2016. Each state's plan must have enforceable limits, and must include how the levels will be reported and monitored. There must also be a method for corrective actions for those who fall short. The EPA will require biannual reporting of the state's progress.
Once the plan is accepted, states have to reach interim goals by 2020 and have until 2030 to meet the final goal of a 30% decrease in carbon emissions from the levels reported in 2005. To put that in perspective, that is equal to the emissions from powering 65 million homes, roughly half of the homes in America.
In addition to the 30% reduction in carbon emissions, the Clean Power Plan will also result in the reduction of particle pollution, nitrogen oxides, and sulfur dioxide by more than 25 percent. Consumers should also benefit from a roughly 8 percent decrease in their electric bills due to increased energy efficiency and reduced demand in the electricity system.
To read the plan or to learn more, visit the US EPA's Clean Power Plan site. Public Hearings are to be held during the last week of July.
Share your thoughts on the new plan below.
As most of you know, last week marked the last day for our long-time Service Manager, Paul. After 22 years with Environics, he is moving and starting a new chapter in his life. We will all miss him and wish him the very best!
With service on our minds, I bring to you today a few of the more commonly asked questions from our customers. If you have a question, you can always reach us via our website, email or by phone.
My system locked up. What should I do?
I replaced the system batteries and now I see odd characters on the screen. Help!
In both of these cases, the system needs to be reinitialized to factory settings using the system configuration data provided with the system. Tech Bulletin 104 outlines how to proceed. If you've misplaced your system's data, you can request a copy online.
I'm not getting flow but I can hear the solenoids clicking on. What should I do?
The instrument's configuration data may be corrupted. Tech Bulletin 107 will walk you through how to confirm the calibration data is in error and show you how to restore it.
SERIES 6100 OR 9100
I want to recalibrate my ozone generator. What should I do?
If you are interested in doing this calibration and have the necessary equipment, Tech Bulletin 106 (9100) and Tech Bulletin 114 (6100) will guide you step by step through the process. Be sure to read through all of the notes on preparing the system prior to calibration.
As a US-based company, we are often asked where we ship internationally. Both direct and through distributors and reps, we sell worldwide.
Here is a map of the locations our units have shipped from us over the past few years (the blue pointers are our distributors).
Are you using an Environics system in a location that isn't marked? Let us know so we can add you to the map!
We are quickly approaching what is commonly known as "ozone season" in the US. This is the time of year where agencies shift into high gear of monitor, record and report the levels of ozone as well as other pollutants.
Many of our customers have been getting their ambient monitor calibration systems calibrated and tuned-up to be ready to begin the season. If you still need your system serviced for this ozone season, please let us know ASAP as the calendar is filling fast!
Check out this post from last year regarding the EPA’s new ozone reporting site. It’s a great way to check the conditions in your area.
On June 30, 2013, the US Environmental Protection Agency released a revision to the Air Emissions Reporting Rule (AERR). The rule states the goal of the revisions is to "reduce reporting burden for state, local and tribal agencies, improve consistency and clarity with other rules, and better reflect current inventory technologies and practices."
The AERR was first published in 2008 as a replacement to the previous Consolidated Emissions Reporting Rule (CERR), which was published in 2002. Both regulations were created to improve the ability of the EPA to gather emissions data on a national level. The data is used to create a national inventory of air pollutant emissions. You can see this data in use and search for the conditions in your area at the EPA's MY Environment.
The improved AERR aims to grant states more flexibility on how to collect and report this emissions data. These increased permissions give the state programs the ability to operate more efficiently. To find out more visit the EPA's AERR page.
In a recent speech, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry stated that climate change is one of the most serious issues facing our world today and that he considers it "the greatest challenge of our generation." Following his visit to China last week, Kerry focused back on the State of the Union address by U.S. President Barack Obama, stating climate change is an undeniable fact. China, the top producer of greenhouse gas emissions, and the US will share "information and policies so that we can help develop plans to deal with the U.N. climate change negotiation that takes place in Paris next year."
The condition of the air in China has long been a source of concern, brought to the forefront during the Olympic games in Beijing in 2008. According to the World Health Organization, approximately 65%-70% of China's energy sources comes from coal and China is second only to the United States as an energy producer. The Chinese government revised air quality standards which will progressively require cities to meet the restrictions by 2015. The standard includes 8-hour standards for ambient air monitoring of ozone (O3) and particulate matter (PM) 2.5, which are considered "fine" particulates that are the most harmful. As of 2013, two thirds of cities do not yet conform to the new standard. Studies by the WHO and others show that a million Chinese die every year due to the effects of interior and exterior air pollution.
In response to the lack of willingness of the Chinese government to share detailed information, the U.S. embassy in Beijing began posting air quality measurements gathered at the embassy in real time, both on its website and through a twitter account (@BeijingAir). Chinese officials had disputed the American data, however Chinese citizens and environmental groups continued to press for data to be gathered and shared. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy visited one of the most affected cities, Shanghai, back in December. China is looking for help as the heavy pollution threatens to turn away foreign investors. McCarthy discussed shale development and the use of natural gas to reduce pollutants.
It appears that the concern of the long term effects on not addressing pollution is beginning to instigate change. Just this month, Beijing has ordered 15,000 factories to begin providing data regarding their emissions to the public in real-time. Also, China's Cabinet announced $1.6 billion in incentives has been set aside for companies that are making strides to cut their emissions. At the same time, the official Xinhua News Agency said 300 polluting factories were slated to be shut down in Beijing during 2014.
Although these are excellent first steps, it will take international collaboration to clear the air because pollution wafts in from the surrounding regions.
To learn more, check out the WHO's site on China and the US EPA Collaboration with China
image source: Shanghai Rela Time Air Quality (2/17/2014 1:55 PM EST), http://www.semc.gov.cn/aqi/home/English.aspx
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Check out this recent article regarding the use of the Reduced Oxygen Breathing Device in preparing US Air Force Airmen for the "Worse Case Scenario." The Environics Reduced Oxygen Breathing Device 2 (or ROBD2) plays a key role in that training.