Reliable Monitoring of Carbon Black Particulate Emissions

In December, the EPA reached consent agreements stemming from Clean Air Act claims with 3 major carbon black manufacturers, where the plants agreed to invest $300 million collectively in state-of-the-art pollution control technologies. This resolution once again reinforced the importance of reliable particulate emission monitoring technology. Although carbon black stacks and baghouse dust collectors are some of the most challenging applications, carbon black manufacturers have been using Auburn FilterSense continuous particulate emission monitoring systems for years to help improve production and proactively stay in compliance and avoid fines.

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News Flash: EPA Loosens "Once In, Always In" Policy for MACT Standards


Since the early 1990's, industrial facilities have become accustomed to being required to comply to specific reporting, record keeping, and other Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) standards that were defined in their Title V Operating Permit for any "major source". The Clean Air Act defines a “major source” as a one that emits, or has the potential to emit, 10 tons per year of any hazardous air pollutant, or 25 tons per year or more of any combination of hazardous air pollutants (HAPs).  Sources with emissions below this threshold are classified as “area sources.” Different control standards apply to the source depending on whether or not it is classified as a “major source” or an “area source.”

Last week, the EPA issued a guidance memorandum withdrawing the “once in always in” policy for the classification of major sources of hazardous air pollutants under section 112 of the Clean Air Act.  This decision allows industrial facilities the opportunity to reduce HAPs emissions to below major source levels and no longer be required to comply with the major source MACT standards.

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How Baghouse Controls Increase Baghouse Efficiency and Ensure Compliance

In today's world, plant personnel are increasingly tasked with keeping particulate emissions asBaghouse controls allow plants to take action before forced shutdowns are need due to baghouse maintenance 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:

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Is a Particulate Monitor Worth the Investment?

Any investment in new technology, maintenance process or a management system is usually evaluated by the likely return on investment. Triboelectric particulate monitoring systems are no different. Many facilities are required to use the technology for compliance. In others, however, investing in a triboelectric particulate monitor may be a business decision, the same as adding additional instruments and controls. The calculation of ROI can be more complex when considering detectors all the way down to the compartment and row level, and when investing in baghouse control systems.

This article explores the 4 main benefits of triboelectric monitoring of PM emissions and provides some tips on justifying the investment.

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Advantages to Using Pneumatic Conveying Controls to Dynamically Adjust Gas Speed

Particle Speed, not Air Speed!

Pneumatic conveying plays a large role in many industrial processes across many industries. From batch mixing and manufacturing, to fuel feed rates for boilers and furnaces, pneumatic conveying controls must be set correctly or else serious complications can arise leading to loss of product, damage to equipment or even potential safety or emissions violations.

Recently, Auburn Systems has had great success integrating their triboelectric particulate monitoring solutions directly with pneumatic conveying system controls to dynamically adjust fan settings to increase/decrease air flow and velocity through the processes. This can be done by measuring actual particle speed with the TRIBO.hs 5000 particle velocity monitoring series. Let’s examine a few of these advantages.

Advantage #1 - Automate Control Settings to Respond to Process Changes

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Measuring Dust Extraction Velocity

Directly Measure Particle Velocity

Just like in dilute phase conveying systems, dust collection systems require the bulk materials stay entrained in the air stream.  This is accomplished when the air speed in the systems remains at or above the minimum conveying velocity for the product. If it dips below the minimum conveying velocity (also called transport velocity) the dust particles will begin to settle out of the air stream. Dust collector systems are engineered for certain parameters based on things like fan size, duct configuration, and filter media.  Once in operation, it is more common that the engineered conditions do not always match the reality of the process conditions.Directly measuring the particle velocity inside the dust laden duct can provide operations the means to understand and even optimize the performance of their dust collector system.

Problems Caused By Low Air Velocity In Dust Collection Systems

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Is Baghouse Dye Leak Testing Necessary When Using Triboelectric Monitoring?

Find and fix it fast!

One of the many benefits of triboelectric particulate monitors is the ability to detect leaking filter bags quickly. In fact, triboelectric systems for dust collectors are often (and rightly) referred to as “leak detection systems”, “bag leak detectors” or “broken bag detectors”. Interestingly, most dust collector OEMs recommend “dust collector leak testing” as part of their preventive maintenance schedules. This leads many to ask whether or not triboelectric leak detectors replace normal baghouse leak testing. Let’s consider this topic and see what role both play in maintaining your dust collection system. 

What is Baghouse Dye Leak Testing?

Maintaining peak collection efficiency in a fabric filter dust collector requires no individual filters leak at all. Even just one leaking filter among hundreds in larger systems can cause the system to exceed its maximum allowable emissions. For this reason, plant operators must keep a close watch on the filters in their systems and quickly identify and replace any damaged filters. But how do you find a small amount or even just one broken filter bag among dozens or even hundreds of filters in a dust collector? 

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4 Reasons Triboelectric Dust Collector Monitoring is Right for Your Plant

Do you monitor your dust collectors?

Baghouses and dust collectors have the reputation for being neglected or a source of constant maintenance problems. Some facilities have to monitor their dust collectors based on their local, state or federal reguations. Thrugh the years it has been common to simply monitor the differential pressure, or just visually inspect the outlet stacks. Triboelectric broken bag detectors and bag leak detection systems have been around for decades now. Let’s take a look at how a triboelectric dust collector monitoring system can bring benefits to your facility.

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Air Permit Renewal, an Opportunity for Improvement?

Many may feel that modifying or renewing an air permit can be a time consuming task, a new permit provides an opportunity to incorporate new monitoring technology that has other benefits. For instance, some may ask whether they should continue using opacity monitoring for their CAM requirements or if can they eliminate much of their manual monitoring by taking the opportunity to review their current practices.

First Emissions Monitoring Methods

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Dust Collection Systems Monitoring in Cement Plants

Multiple Demanding & Dusty Applications

Cement plants rely heavily on dust collection systems for various processes in their plants. From capturing emissions from their boilers and kilns, to conveying systems used to move cement and other bulk materials around, to silo bin vents. What benefits can triboelectric technology from Auburn Systems provide in all of these areas within a cement facility?  

Here two areas where implementation can simplify compliance and improve operations.

Use Opacity Monitoring with Triboelectric Particulate Monitoring

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