Air Monitors has launched a new division to cater specifically for the air monitoring requirements of the food industry. Sales Manager Colin Craggs says “This initiative has been taken in response to a recent rise in enquiries from the food and beverage markets, combined with advances in measurement technology.”
The new division will focus on four areas: dust in the workplace, bioaerosol hazards, gas mixers/blenders and packaging gas.
A range of leading dust monitors has been assembled to cover every application. Portable particulate monitors enable occupational safety managers and consultants to conduct accurate surveys in order to assess the levels of risk and to identify potentially dangerous areas, and fixed monitors help to ensure the protection of staff and visitors in those areas of greatest risk.
Air Monitors recently launched a new advanced technology for the sampling of bioaerosols and Colin says “The Coriolis µ is a very important technology for the food sector because airborne biological hazards are a particular concern for workers in many processing plants.”
The Coriolis µ has a new wet-walled cyclone technology that improves bioaerosol sampling for bacteria, pollen, endotoxins, viruses and fungal spores. Traditional techniques rely on the impact of biological particles on a solid growth medium, but the Coriolis µ collects the particles in a liquid at a high flow rate (300 l/m) with validated efficiency that surpasses traditional methods. Importantly, the liquid containing the particles is compatible with a number of the latest rapid microbiological analysis methods.
The third group of instruments includes a range of highly accurate gas blenders and mixers which are designed for modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) applications. It is common for MAP to contain two or three gases or more, so the major advantage of these gas mixers is the cost saving from pure gases in comparison with premixed cylinders. However, these systems also provide gas mixtures with greater accuracy and repeatability.
The accuracy of gas concentrations is further protected by a range of gas analysers for non-invasive oxygen measurement and permeation testing.
Summarising Colin says: “In addition to the applications described above, we also offer gas detection equipment for confined space, toxic gases, combustibles, oxygen depletion etc. So, as a result of this initiative, we hope to become a one-stop-shop for air quality products in the food and beverage sector.”
Air Monitors Ltd, the specialist provider of air quality monitoring equipment and services, has been appointed UK distributor for Environics, the US-based manufacturer of gas mixers, gas dilution and calibration systems.
“This is great news for our customers,” says Jim Mills, Managing Director of Air Monitors. “The Environics products are renowned around the world for quality, accuracy and reliability, which is vitally important because good quality calibration is key to the delivery of good quality data from gas detection and monitoring systems.”
Environics gas mixing and dilution technology is based on very precise control of thermal mass flow controllers, which normally offer an accuracy of +/- 1% of full-scale flow. However, when combined with Environics technology, this is improved to +/- 1% of setpoint, which can produce a 10-fold improvement in accuracy and as a result, these systems exceed the US EPA requirements for ambient calibrators.
For further information on the Environics products click here
Globally, fine dust particles have been the focus of much greater attention in recent months as their role in deaths related to poor air quality becomes better understood. However, knowledge of the relationship between airborne particles and health effects is limited by the information that can be obtained by monitoring technologies.
Jim Mills, a particulate monitoring specialist from Air Monitors Ltd, believes that ambient dust monitoring technology has taken a major step forward with the development of a new Fine Dust Analysis System (FIDAS) which offers additional information on both particle size distribution from 0.18 – 30 microns and on particle number in each size range. It also provides continuous real-time simultaneous mass concentration measurements of TSP, PM1, PM2.5 and PM10. As such, Jim says “FIDAS will complement existing PM monitoring technology such as the TEOM FDMS, which is a standard method in many countries.”
The FIDAS instrument employs a white light LED light scatter method which will be particularly attractive to the managers of monitoring networks because it does not require consumables or mains power, and does not need to be housed in an air-conditioned housing.
Instrumentation specialist Air Monitors Ltd received a £1,000 cheque at AQE 2013 (the Air Quality and Emissions Show) for attracting the highest number of visitor registrations to this year’s event at the Telford International Centre.
Following the presentation, exhibition organiser Marcus Pattison said: “AQE 2013 was a phenomenal success, attracting three times the number of visitors than the previous event in 2011, so we are extremely grateful to all of the speakers, exhibitors, attendees and organisational staff that helped make this event such a success.
“Air Monitors made a tremendous contribution to the advance publicity, so I am naturally delighted to present this cheque in recognition of their outstanding efforts.”
Accepting the cheque on behalf of Air Monitors, Jim Mills said: “We were naturally delighted to win the competition, but for us, the greatest reward was the success of the event – our workshops were full to bursting and our stand was extremely busy throughout.
“We launched two new technologies at AQE 2013, both of which generated enormous interest. The new ambient air monitoring system, AQMesh, looks set to revolutionise the way air quality is monitored, and the FIDAS particulates monitor will provide much greater insight into the pollutant that is responsible for the most premature deaths.”
Plans are already under way for the next AQE, which will take place 22-23rd April 2015.
Jim Mills receives cheque from AQE organiser Marcus Pattison
As many countries fail to meet air quality targets and large numbers of premature deaths are still the result from air pollution, Air Monitors Managing Director Jim Mills explains in the December issue of International Environmental Technology (IET) why 2013 should be a pivotal year for air quality.
Two weeks ago marked the 60 year anniversary of the 1952 Great Smog. The IET article is therefore timely, but demonstrates that, whilst there has been an improvement in air quality, 2013 will be a vital year in dealing with the important issues that remain.
Today we are looking back at an IET article from June 2012.
On 8th January 2012 a tiny ultra-light aircraft left Ljubljana in Slovenia on a mission to circumvent the globe using the smallest amount of fuel per distance flown whilst recording ambient levels of Black Carbon (BC) – one of the most important measures of air quality in terms of both human health and climate change.
UK based particulate monitoring specialist Jim Mills from Air Monitors says the project, which is known as ‘Green Light World Flight’, “Is tremendously exciting because it will, for the first time, reveal data on Black Carbon over an enormous area, and such valuable temporal and spatial data will provide greatly improved insight into the ways in which BC emissions could be addressed.”
A new report published in September 2012 by the European Environment Agency shows that almost a third of Europe's city dwellers are exposed to excessive concentrations of airborne particulate matter (PM); one of the most important pollutants in terms of harm to human health because it penetrates sensitive parts of the respiratory system.
Colin Craggs from instrumentation specialist Air Monitors says “This is a timely reminder of the dangers posed by particulates and coincides with the UK launch of a fixed area dust/aerosol monitor for continuous monitoring and a portable monitor for personal exposure at multiple locations.”
Both instruments are manufactured by Thermo Scientific and Colin says “National ambient monitoring systems are already in place and strict regulations restrict the PM emissions from industry and vehicles. However, employers have a duty of care to protect their staff, so accurate monitoring of the workplace is essential.”
The new PM monitors are the latest versions of well-established and proven techniques offering a complete solution for monitoring particulate exposure in industrial and occupational safety applications including COSHH/NIOSH assessments.
Both the ADR-1500 Area Dust Monitor and the pDR-1500 Personal Aerosol Monitor employ light scattering photometers (nephelometers) with relative humidity compensation and true volumetric flow control to provide high-precision, real-time results with optional gravimetric validation.
In order to be able to function in a wide variety of applications, these high resolution instruments offer an extremely wide measurement range - 0.001 to 400 mg/m3 (auto-ranging) which covers all particulates from PM-1 to PM-10.
Weighing just 13kg, the ADR-1500 Area Dust Monitor has a weather-proof IP65 housing and a handle which allows for ease of transport and installation with mounting options available for wall, post or tripod locations. With a choice of AC or DC power, the ADR-1500 is simple to set up and run. Data are recorded at intervals ranging from 1 second to 1 hour, and the unit will issue an alarm as soon as PM levels reach a dangerous (user defined) level.
Weighing just 1.2kg, the pDR-1500 personal monitor can run from a fixed position or worn on a belt to facilitate real-time measurements as the user moves from one location to another. This personal monitor offers the same data recording capability as the area monitor and features interchangeable cyclones for superior particle cut points for PM10 & PM4 or PM2.5 & PM.
Summarising Colin Craggs says: “The pDR-1500 enables occupational safety managers and consultants to conduct accurate surveys in order to assess the levels of risk and identify potentially dangerous areas. The ADR-1500 complements this product by providing the ability to continuously monitor those areas and ensure the protection of staff and visitors.”
Today we are looking back at an IET article from December 2011.
In this article Jim Mills, Managing Director of Air Monitors, demonstrates that the time has come to change or at least augment the way ambient particulates are monitored and regulated.
Air Monitors has supplied most of the UK's ambient monitoring network, but Jim will explain why the measurement of Black Carbon could change the way we look at particulate pollution, so that focus will be given to strategies that could result in improvements to human health and make a very significant contribution to the fight against climate change.
Jim will also outline the rationale behind a new €3million EU funded project (Carbotraf) which will use Black Carbon measurements to inform traffic management systems in both Glasgow, Scotland and Graz, Austria.
Amidst growing concern with the consequences of ground level ozone on health, and the continued failure of the UK to meet European air quality directives, Air Monitors, has launched a new portable UV-based ozone monitor which significantly enhances the ability to measure the air that people breathe.
The handheld Personal Ozone Monitor (POM) allows accurate and precise (2ppb) measurement of ambient ozone in air across a wide concentration range (2 ppb to 10 ppm). The instrument has an inbuilt display, so users can view real-time data. Small, lightweight (0.34kg) and with a low power requirement, it is suitable for diverse applications such as Health and Safety monitoring at industrial sites, personal exposure monitoring, vertical profiling with balloons etc. and urban arrays of ground-based detectors.
Other functions include on-board GPS, providing location data with each ozone measurement, and a memory capacity of 341 days (when taking hourly measurements) – all data can be transferred to a PC at a later time. This makes the POM suitable for long-term monitoring at remote locations where power is limited.
Air Monitors is the sole distributor in the UK, and Managing Director Jim Mills says “Most people are aware of the fact that stratospheric ozone is beneficial to humans because it protects us from harmful UV radiation. However, the dangerous effects of ozone at ground level are less well known; it causes eye, nose and throat irritation, chest discomfort, coughs and headaches, particularly in people who exercise or suffer from bronchitis, respiratory allergies or asthma. Ozone also damages crops and materials such as rubber, paint and textiles.
“The major advantage of the POM is that it provides a means with which ozone can be monitored in the air that people breathe.”
Amidst growing concerns with the health effects of airborne particles, Air Monitors has launched a new portable air sampler which significantly enhances the ability to measure and control biological contamination.
The ‘Coriolis µ’ has a new wet-walled cyclone technology that improves bioaerosol sampling for bacteria, pollen, endotoxins, viruses and fungal spores. Traditional techniques rely on the impact of biological particles on a solid growth medium, but the Coriolis µ collects the particles in a liquid at a high flow rate (300 l/m) with validated efficiency. The liquid containing the particles is compatible with a number of the latest rapid microbiological analysis methods.
The Coriolis µ offers advantages for sampling air with a high bioaerosol burden (which would saturate traditional solid media) because the liquid can be divided into multiple agar plates. This technology is also ideal for air with a low burden, because the Coriolis µ can collect for an extended period.
Air Monitors, Managing Director Jim Mills says “This is an exciting development and I think that as scientific knowledge in this area grows, it will become a standard method very quickly. In the meantime, I can see a wide variety of research and air quality investigation applications that would greatly benefit from this technology.”