In today's world, plant personnel are increasingly tasked with keeping particulate emissions as low as possible while both complying with EPA and local regulations and minimizing baghouse downtime and maintenance expenses. Often, we hear from our customers about the inability to do so efficiently and the difficulty their facilities have committing resources to proactively manage and optimize their baghouse environment - resulting in wasted time and unexpected maintenance costs.
While baghouse compliance and management can be a frustrating endeavor, here are 3 ways that using baghouse controls, such as Auburn FilterSense's Baghouse Performance and Analysis Controls (B-PAC), has helped many companies satisfy regulatory requirements while also increasing baghouse efficiencies:
1. Advanced Filter Leak, Solenoid, and Diaphragm Diagnostics
Among the most costly tasks in a plant is unplanned baghouse maintenance - often resulting in operational shutdowns until the baghouse can be repaired. Traditionally plants have been forced to do manual inspections (such as visual inspections and black light/dye tests to identify the location of failing filter bags) and forced shutdowns to deal with issues that arise out of normal operation of their baghouses.
When using baghouse control systems, plants are often able to eliminate unplanned downtime by gaining insight into how their baghouse filters are performing and being notified of impending failures well before an event occurs. When monitoring and analyzing dust collector emissions, impending failure can be discovered ahead of time allowing for corrective action to be taken at a time that is convenient and cost effective for the plant.
With the ability to identify and isolate filter failures down to the row and compartment, baghouse control systems are able to tell maintenance where the excursion is occurring while also shutting down that section of the baghouse until the failed filters can be repaired. This saves precious time when identifying the source of the leak, while also limiting the event and protecting surrounding filter media.
Solenoid and diaphragm failures are able to be identified in real-time, allowing for plants to replace the failed parts before unnecessary compressed air is wasted as a result of the failure. This not only keeps the baghouse operational but also reduces excessive cost in compressed air and energy associated with such failures.
2. Extending Filter Media Life
All filter media has a life expectancy, but why should plants be forced to change out all of their bags at once when the manufacturer tells them to? The reality is that filter media life is not a measure of time, but rather cleaning cycles. If you can reduce the number of cleaning cycles needed to keep your baghouse running efficiently, reduce emissions, and stay in compliance, then you are at the same time extending the life of baghouse filters.
Baghouse optimization systems, like Auburn FilterSense's B-PAC, allow for the cleaning of compartments and filters only when necessary to maintain a target differential pressure. This reduces the number of cleaning cycles and extends filter life due to on demand cleaning, rather than excessive cleaning caused by traditional timer boards and cleaning methods.
3. Automating Regulatory Inspection Requirements
Complying with EPA, OSHA, or NFPA regulations is necessary for for many facilities - following manual inspections guidelines to satisfy the air permit or compliance assurance monitoring plan also requires manual labor. Baghouse control systems help facilities meet compliance through the automation and combination of differential pressure control and particulate monitoring. This eliminates the need for manual inspections of DP gauges or visual inspections of dust collector emissions as required by many permits. Continuous automated monitoring simplifies reporting mandates - freeing up time for plant personnel for other projects and duties.
Auburn FilterSense's B-PAC control systems allow plants to move from traditional methods of maintaining their baghouse environment to a fully integrated and automated approach. This ensures that plants are meeting their compliance needs while gaining insight into the health and operation of their baghouses - eliminating unplanned downtime and significantly cutting maintenance costs.
Learn more about how one plant in western Massachusetts was not only able to meet and automate their compliance regulations, but turn a compliance mandate into $765K in annual operating saving; while also receiving a $600K energy rebate.
Contact us if you would like to learn more about Baghouse Performance and Analytical Controls