Quantitech Ltd

FTIR gas monitor for diverse applications


Courtesy of Courtesy of Quantitech Ltd

QUANTITECH, a leading supplier of environmental monitoring instrumentation, has recently supplied EURO Environmental Services in Ireland with a transportable Gasmet FTIR multiparameter gas analyser which EURO Environmental's Managing Director Geoff Fitzpatrick says, “is proving invaluable in many varied applications across a broad selection of industries.”

With headquarters in Drogheda in Ireland and providing a range of testing, management and research projects in air, soil, water and waste, EURO Environmental Services helps businesses to comply with environmental regulations and is now one of the UK’s fastest growing environmental science companies. The company's stack testing teams were the first to receive MCERTS accreditation in Ireland and now provide testing and monitoring services across Ireland and the UK.

Commenting on the benefits of adding FTIR to EURO Environmental’s fleet of instruments, Geoff Fitzpatrick says, “We have a large customer base spread across a wide range of industries including those with complex emissions such as thermal oxidisers, waste incinerators, pharmaceutical and combustion plants. We need to be able to measure a wide range of gases, across a broad selection of temperature and moisture contents, working with a large number of abatement techniques. It follows therefore, that we need reliable, accurate transportable technology that is sufficiently flexible to be able to accommodate such a wide range of applications. The FTIR from Quantitech fulfils that need.”

An additional benefit to EURO Environmental of the MCERTS approved FTIR from Quantitech, is the competitive advantage that it provides in enabling the company to offer monitoring services for a vast array of parameters.

The quality of the monitoring services delivered by EURO Environmental Services is vitally important, not least because it was recently contracted by the Environmental Protection Agency of Ireland to undertake stack testing on its behalf for a three year period. This contract was effectively a repeat of the contract that EURO Environmental Services had successfully completed in the prior 3 year period.

Quantitech first launched the Gasmet FTIR technology in the UK and Irish market in 1988 and since that time has established a leadership position in the market with over 100 installed systems. Gasmet (formerly known as Temet) was the first company worldwide to market portable FTIR gas analysers.

The Gasmet FTIR gas analyser from Quantitech can measure any gas, with the exception of Noble gases, homonuclear diatomic gases (e.g., N2, Cl2, H2, F2, etc) and H2S (detection limit too high).

The majority of FTIR analysers are used for process control, exhaust monitoring, emissions monitoring, workplace/industrial hygiene monitoring and research.

As a multicomponent gas analyser, the Gasmet FTIR from Quantitech is ideal for customers that need to: analyse several components; analyse hot/wet gas (e.g., hot humid applications for HCN, NH3 or HCl etc); or analyse any gas in complicated gas mixtures.

Quantitech’s Dominic Duggan says that in comparison with multiple analyser CEMS, the FTIR is “Extremely easy to operate” adding, “Zero point calibration with Nitrogen (background) just takes a few minutes and is required once a day. Water vapour calibration must be performed after every major maintenance operation and at least once per year. Under normal circumstances no other calibration is required which saves our customers a great deal of time, effort and money.'

'Absorptivity is a physical constant specific to each gas, and the reference spectra (or calibrations) can be transferred from analyser to analyser. As a consequence we are able to add measurement parameters to installed CEMS as and when required. We can even analyse old recorded spectra in order to calculate concentrations of gases that were not initially required, which means that this instrument is often labelled as 'future-proof'.'

The Gasmet library of reference spectra consists of reference files of gas spectra measured to date with different Gasmet gas analysers. The library contains hundreds of spectra and each reference spectrum contains both quantitative and qualitative information about the component.

High levels of accuracy and low levels of maintenance are achieved as a result of continuous calibration with a He-Ne laser, which provides a stable wavenumber scale. In addition, high spectral signal to noise ratio and high wavenumber precision are characteristic of the FTIR method. This yields high analytical sensitivity, accuracy and precision.

The FTIR system employed by EURO Environmental Services is a portable system, however a fixed continuous emissions monitor is also available for process operators that require permanently installed monitoring equipment. Both versions of the monitor employ exactly the same technology, which Dominic Duggan believes to be a major advantage because data from the portable version are directly comparable to the fixed system.

EURO Environmental took delivery of the Gasmet FTIR in January 2009. This was followed by a short training course provided by Quantitech. Since that time, Geoff Fitzpatrick says, 'The quality of support from Quantitech is excellent. Their staff have a high level of technical knowledge; not just in the monitoring technology but also in the requirements for a wide variety of applications.'

'In recent months we have employed the new monitoring equipment frequently and we are constantly finding new ways to exploit the power of the FTIR technology. It has been much easier to operate than wet chemistry and I believe that FTIR is the way forward in emissions monitoring. We anticipate a requirement for further instruments in the near future.'

Summarising his view on the FTIR from Quantitech Geoff Fitzpatrick says, 'Much of our monitoring work is part of either regulatory control or compliance, so it is vitally important that our data is of the highest quality. It was logical therefore to choose the Gasmet FTIR because it is able to provide the reliability and flexibility that we require.'

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