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Manufacturers of metal products and components must deal with both indoor and outdoor environmental problems relating to processes used for metal fabrication. Things like oil mist and contaminated gas adversely affect health and safety within the workplace as well as in the area surrounding the facility. 

The Impact of Oil Mist and Contaminated Gas

Oil mist is the aerosol that develops when oil is used for cooling or lubricating during the machining of metal components. Oil smoke is created when oil contacts a hot machined surface, vaporizes, and condenses as sub-micron particles. Contaminated gases are also commonly produced when metals are melted or otherwise processed.

Prolonged and continual exposure to oil and gases can be harmful to employee health. Beyond the facility, environmental problems such as air emission and groundwater contamination can occur. Measures must be taken to remove the contamination, and adequate filtration and disposal of contaminants is critical. Local pollution control codes provide guidelines for acceptable levels to assure air and water quality.

Manufacturer Needed Help Dealing with Oil Mist and Contamination Issues 

Glacier Technology was contacted by a manufacturer of lead products and components who needed a solution to deal with contamination issues resulting from their fabrication processes. While indoor air quality was being managed sufficiently, problems were identified with the groundwater and air quality surrounding the facility. 

The customer had multiple die casting machines using cooling oil mists to help release the lead parts. Lead has a significant level of toxicity, which increases as it is melted, so toxic gases were also being emitted during the lead melting process at each machine. While the company did have mist collectors on all of the machines, the equipment was not sufficiently filtering the air and water to meet pollution control requirements.

Glacier Develops Solution Using FibreDrain®

The Glacier Team assessed the situation and recommended the installation of Nederman FibreDrain oil mist collectors to replace the inadequate collectors. Since FibreDrain offers multiple levels of filtration, including HEPA filtration, it was suited to meet the challenges involved with lead processing. 

Glacier installed a FibreDrain unit, including a custom hood and duct system, on one machine. After observing this trial installation for two months, the company saw dramatic results. Air going into the collector measured at a contamination level of 46.8 parts per million, and came out at a level of .16 parts per million. This was well under level required by pollution control codes, improving air quality within the plant, and providing a way to eliminate air and groundwater contamination problems. The company quickly ordered enough FibreDrain systems to manage all of their die casting machines.

Need assistance finding a clean air solution? Contact the Glacier team!

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