VATIS Update Ozone Layer Protection . Jan-Feb 2003

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Ozone Layer Protection Jan-Feb 2003

ISSN: 0971-5657

VATIS Update Ozone Layer Protection is published 6 times a year to keep the readers up to date of most of the relevant and latest technological developments and events in the field of Ozone Layer Protection. The Update is tailored to policy-makers, industries and technology transfer intermediaries.

Ozone Cell, Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change
Govt. of India

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Atmospheric waves help shrink ozone hole over Antarctica

A new study by NASA, the United States, indicates that massive waves in the atmosphere helped reduce the size of the Antarctic ozone hole. According to the report, a large number of planetary sized waves moving from the lower atmosphere to the upper atmosphere were responsible for the smaller Antarctic ozone hole. The September 2002 hole measured 15 million km2, half the size it was in 2000. However, there is no evidence to suggest that the ozone hole is recovering.
A long wave or planetary wave is a weather system that circles the world. It resembles a series of ocean waves with ridges, or high points, and troughs, or low points. At any given time, there are between one and three of these waves looping around the Earth. More or stronger atmospheric waves keep temperatures warm aloft. The warmer the upper air around the polar vortex or rotating column of winds that reach into the upper atmosphere where the protective ozone layer is, the less ozone is depleted. Large Southern Hemisphere weather systems generated more frequent and stronger planetary waves that caused a series of stratospheric warmings during the Southern winter. 


WMO bulletin on ozone hole

Experts at the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) report that the Antarctic ozone hole has split. In an unprecedented event, the ozone hole broke into two smaller portions, one centred west of the southern tip of South America and the other centred south-east of the tip of Africa.
Less than two weeks ago, WMO had reported that the 2002 Antarctic vortex was the smallest in over 20 years, while minimum stratospheric temperatures were similar to recent years. Temperatures low enough to form polar stratospheric clouds covered only about 30 per cent of the vortex area, down from the 50 per cent reported in September.



ODS phase-out in RAC and chiller sector

India is phasing out ODS in both the end-use consumption sector and production sector. A total of 347 projects in the consumption sector have been approved and funded by the Multilateral Fund (MLF). Of these, 270 are ODS phase-out investment projects while 77 are non-investment and support activities. A total of US$127 million has been approved by ExCom for phasing out 12,243 ODP tonnes. Sector-wise break up of the funds approved by MLF is listed in the table below:

Approved projects as on 31.09.2002
Serial No.

New designer range of CFC-free fridges

Electrolux Kelvinator Ltd. plans to convert its entire range of refrigerators into CFC-free models. This project is a part of the ongoing restructuring and consolidation process for manufacturing facilities, models and brands. The new range of refrigerators unveiled include New Electrolux Kelvinator 325 l frost-free, New Allwyn Platina in two ranges Platina Infinity and Platina Eternity New Durocool, Supercool Aquaflow and Limited Edition series. 


Awareness workshop for service technicians

The Small Industries Service Institute (SISI) in Hyderabad conducted a one-day awareness workshop on ODS for members of the Air-conditioning and Refrigeration Technicians Welfare Association on 8 November 2002 at Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh. A total of 145 participants took part in the programme. Mr. G.M. Ambhore, Director of SISI, inaugurated the workshop and stressed the need to conserve the ozone layer. Another expert at the seminar informed the usefulness of organizing awareness projects for protection of the environment and called for more such programmes.

In the technical session, professional consultants gave presentations on various aspects of ozone layer protection, retrofitting guidelines for HFC and hydrocarbon (HC) refrigerants and retrofit choices available to technicians, benefits of HC refrigerants and problems associated with HC refrigerants in retrofitting and its servicing, non-CFC refrigerant options/alternatives and retrofitting, recovering refrigerants, non-ODS technologies, etc. Other topics discussed include ozone layer depletion and its causes, international treaties, Montreal Protocol, Indias commitment to the Montreal Protocol, multilateral assistance, cost-effective substitutes, technical and financial assistance admissible under the Montreal Protocol, ODS Regulation Rules, registration procedures and HIDECOR/ECOFRIG project activities, etc.

Contact: Small Industries Service Institute, Narsapur X Road, Balanagar, Hyderabad 500 037, Andhra Pradesh, India. Tel: +91 (40) 3078 131-133; Fax: +91 (40) 3078 857


CFC phase-out

The Union Environment and Forest Minister had stated that India would phase out the use of CFCs in the manufacturing sector, except for essential medical purposes, by the end of 2002. In compliance with the Montreal Protocol, the use of halons was banned from January 2001 and use of other ODS such as carbon tetrachloride, methyl chloroform and CFCs for medical purposes would end by January 2010.

A national awareness campaign on ODS phase-out has been launched to sensitize industries, consumers and stakeholders on ozone-related issues and the use of ozone-friendly products. The programme has targeted phase-out of a total of 12,054 t of ODP substances through 350 projects. Financial assistance of about US$136 million has been provided by the Multilateral Fund, of which 200 projects have been implemented phasing out nearly 6,000 ODP tonnes.


MLF aid for phase-out projects

India has approached the Multilateral Fund (MLF) for US$36.5 million in financial assistance to implement six projects. Two projects aimed at phasing out production and consumption of ODS in the refrigeration and aerosol sectors would complete ODS phase-out in these sectors. The other proposals focus on phasing out ODS technologies in the air-conditioning and manufacturing sectors. An investment of US$6.6 million would cover technology conversions in the commercial refrigeration (manufacturing) sector. A similar terminal umbrella project to phase out ODS in the aerosol segment would cost US$1.4 million. A chlorinated rubber sub-sector project comprising four manufacturing units would phase out carbon tetrachloride at a cost of US$22 million. Another scheme concerns phase II conversion from ODS to non-ODS technology in the manufacture of mobile air-conditioners.



Aid to reduce CFCs in developing nations

A US$573 million funding package is expected to halve consumption and production of CFCs in developing countries by the year 2005. The funds will also finance projects for lowering other substances targeted for phase-out under the Montreal Protocol. Developing nations have until 2005 to cut CFCs and halons by 50 per cent, methyl bromide by 20 per cent and the solvents carbon tetrachloride and methyl chloroform by 50 per cent and 30 per cent, respectively. According to the Deputy Executive Director of UNEP, which administers the ozone treaties, This agreement demonstrates just how much the worlds governments can achieve when they collaborate with one another in good faith to tackle a common challenge.

The Executive Committee also approved US$82 million for new projects to eliminate consumption of 9,000 t and the production of 2,000 t of ODS. This brings the total quantity to be eliminated through Multilateral Fund-supported projects in 125 developing nations to 226,000 t. These approved projects will complete the phase-out of CFC consumption in industrial processes in Nigeria and the Philippines as well as in Indonesias refrigeration industry. They will also end all CFC production in Argentina and most of Chinas production and consumption of carbon tetrachloride. The Fund has disbursed about US$1.5 billion of the US$1.6 billion approved in previous replenishments on projects and activities in developing countries since 1991. 


ODS projects in Pakistan 

Pakistan signed the Montreal Protocol in 1987 and though CFCs were not produced in the country, imported substances were used in the refrigeration industry. The Multilateral Fund (MLF) has provided financial assistance for eliminating ODS. To date, 18 projects in the foam and refrigeration sectors have been approved to phase out 11,700 t of ODS. While four projects were a failure and had to be discontinued, the other 14 projects have been allotted US$7.1 million to phase out 960 t of CFCs.

The phase-out efficiency percentage of the foam and refrigeration sectors responsible for CFCs was recorded at 40 per cent and 22 per cent, respectively. According to Mr. Hamid Hussain Syed, Vice-President of the World Bank, the low achievement in the refrigeration sector for CFC phase-out can be attributed to lack of knowledge in the industry about technology options and reluctance in taking decision. He maintained that projects under MLF were to be completed by the end of 2002, but were extended. Three key factors responsible for delay in the completion of projects include delayed submissions of documents for appraisal by the project enterprise, more than expected time taken for the appraisal and lack of coordination between the project enterprise and financial intermediary. 


Improving CFC handling

Japans Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) recently called on 16 manufacturers to improve their methods for disposing CFCs. Under existing laws, companies are required to ensure that CFCs from discarded air-conditioners and refrigerators are recycled. The recycling law concluded its first year since enforcement in April 2001, with good results in the recovery of CFCs from discarded air-conditioners and refrigerators, 603 tonnes of CFCs were extracted and destroyed.

Japans Cabinet has approved an additional bill, which requires automobile manufacturers and importers to accept used cars returned by owners for recycling shredder dust, air bags and CFCs. When enacted, manufacturers and importers of new vehicles will add a consumer recycling fee to the price of the new car. Vehicle owners would also be expected to contribute about US$150 per car to a recycling fund. Contact: Office for the Promotion of Ozone Layer Protection, Manufacturing Industries Bureau, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Japan.

OzonAction Newsletter, No. 42, August 2002

New Zealand targets harmful extinguishers

In New Zealand, the government has joined hands with the fire protection industry to eliminate potentially dangerous yellow halon fire extinguishers most commonly used in boats, caravans and beaches. Collection and destruction costs of old, unreliable and environmentally harmful extinguishers would be shared by the two parties. According to the Environment Minister, The zero cost of handing a yellow extinguisher when buying an approved red extinguisher will be an incentive for people to not only make themselves safer but also help protect the environment. Fire protection companies are offering special prices on new red fire extinguishers when their counterparts are handed in.

Yellow extinguishers have not been manufactured or comprehensively serviced since the early 1990s and may fail in a fire. Recovered extinguishers are sent to Australia for destruction in purpose-built facilities.

Contact: Halon Recycling Ltd., P.O. Box 302 372, NHPC, Auckland, New Zealand. E-mail: ; Or Ministry for the Environment, P.O. Box 10362, Wellington, New Zealand. Tel: +64 (4) 9177 400; Fax: +64 (4) 9177 523

E-mail: information@mfe.govt.n  

Eradicating ozone killers

In China, Fujian province has blacklisted CFCs and set a deadline for phasing out ODS. Fujian will no longer approve the establishment, extension and renovation of projects producing or using CFCs. Air-conditioning systems and refrigeration equipment to be installed in new commercial and industrial facilities, hotels, offices and public buildings must utilize CFC-free refrigerants; and all such existing venues in the province are prohibited from refilling their air-conditioning and refrigeration equipment with refrigerants containing CFC. They have to compulsorily replace the refrigerants with CFC-free ones.

A schedule has been fixed to replace 50 per cent of CFC refrigerants by the end of 2003, with a target to complete all replacements by the end of 2005. Four of the more economically developed cities Fuzhou, Xiamen, Quanzhou and Zhangzhou have to complete ahead of schedule. Additionally, Fujian will continue to act according to the relevant regulations promulgated by the State Economic and Trade Commission to eliminate obsolete production processes in the metallurgy, building materials, light textiles, coal, petrochemical and pharmaceutical industries. 



New packaged air-conditioners

Mitsubishi Electric Corp., Japan, has introduced Mr. Slim models of 4-way ceiling cassette (power cassette) type commercial packaged air-conditioners (PACs) in New Refrigerant Reheat Dehumidifying Power Inverter SDX series. They can achieve the industrys top level COP of 4 (model P80) and include the inverter reheat dehumidifying system. The models are 2 hp (cooling capacity 4.5 kW), 2.3 hp (5 kW), 2.5 hp (5.6 kW) and 3 hp (7.1 kW). These units eliminate overcooling by simultaneously controlling temperature and humidity through reheat dehumidification using the heat exchanger alone for the first time as PACs.

Segmenting the heat exchanger of indoor units into reheater and evaporator has enabled heat usually wasted from the outdoor unit to be effectively utilized through the reheater. By controlling the refreshing cooling button, room air can be brought to healthy conditions. A high-power dehumidifying function provides three times more dehumidifying capacity than conventional dehumidifying (dry) operation. In about 40 minutes, the room air is dehumidified to 50 per cent humidity, generally accepted as comfortable. In this low humidity environment, curbing of mould or tick proliferation can be expected. A COP of 4 facilitates 70 per cent reduction in yearly power consumption compared with the constant-speed type 80. 


Refrigerant reclaim system

Van Steenburgh Engineering Laboratories Inc., the United States, has launched a new refrigerant reclaim system in the JV series. Refrigerants that can be reclaimed include R-12, -22, -502 and -500 or any combination. The system pumps vapour and takes a system or cylinder to required EPA vacuum levels. A unique method enables maximum oil, acid and oil separation. The drying/filtering process is also enhanced. The new system employs compressor liquid injection during vapour removal, implying that a cylinder or system can be pumped to atmospheric pressure without harming the compressor. Other features include:

* Oil site gauge on compressor;
* Float valve safety shut-off on the storage/chill chambers (backed by four additional safety shut-offs) to prevent overfilling on-board storage;
* Laboratory quality gauges; and
* Visual check points to monitor drying.

Contact: Van Steenburgh Engineering Laboratories Inc., 1825, North Lake Ave., Estes Park, CO 80517, the United States. Tel: +1 (970) 5868 412; Fax: +1 (970) 5868 060;


Chilling with sound

Researchers at Penn State University, the United States, report that a compact freezer case which uses sound waves instead of chemical refrigerants can be built. The eco-friendly thermo-acoustic freezer case envisioned by Dr. Steven Garrett and Mr. Matt Poese would use high amplitude sound energy to cool itself. In tests, Dr. Garretts team employed a souped-up loudspeaker to generate high-amplitude sound energy in inert pressurized gases. A temperature differential of 8 below zero was achieved using sound levels reaching 173 dB. 

Contact: Mr. Gail Cleere, Naval Research Office, the United States. Tel: +1 (703) 6964 987; 


Refrigerant test and flush kits

Mainstream Engineering Corp., the United States, offers QwikCheck refrigerant acid test kit and QwikShot residue-free acid liberator. QwikCheck facilitates refrigerant acidity tests to be conducted on operating systems in five seconds. It can detect harmful acid levels that could damage hermetic compressors and cause sludge formation. The inexpensive kit saves down time and aggravation by avoiding equipment failures.

QwikShot eliminates acid from the system by liberating it from the liquid and hard surfaces that contain the acid, and letting the filter-drier in the system remove the acid. The patented QwikShot does not leave any residue and is compatible with all oils and refrigerants. It is safe for all systems and works with all refrigerants, oils and filter/driers.

Contact: Chemical Engineering and Chemistry Group, Mainstream Engineering Corp., 200, Yellow Place, Pines Industrial Centre, Rockledge, Florida 32955, the United States. Tel: +1 (321) 6313 550; Fax: +1 (321) 6313 552;


Frost-free fridges

BPL Home Appliances, India, has launched direct cool refrigerator models, air-conditioners and washing machines. The non-CFC fridge models have a capacity of 180 l to over 230 l. The 180 l unit in the initial segment is priced at US$175-US$200 and would have additional features such as oil-cooled compressor, door alarm, clean back and 11 l water storage indoor itself.


Eco-friendly delivery system for inhalers

GlaxoSmithKline Inc., Canada, has launched an environmentally friendly delivery system for its inhaled asthma formulations Flovent (fluticasone propionate) and Ventolin (salbutamol sulphate). The new Flovent HFA and Ventolin HFA metered dose inhalers (MDI) deliver medications using a CFC-free propellant. While there is no significant change to the appearance of the inhalers, some patients using the new MDIs may notice a softer, warmer spray, a slightly different taste and lighter canister. These differences does not in any way alter the efficacy of the medications. In addition to receiving approval from the Therapeutics Product Directorate of Health Canada, Ventolin HFA has been approved in more than 50 nations worldwide and Flovent HFA in over 25 countries.

Flovent HFA is an inhaled corticosteroid and a highly potent anti-inflammatory drug, indicated for the control and maintenance treatment of bronchial asthma in patients aged above 12 months. Ventolin HFA is a short-acting beta2-agonist that is indicated for the relief of asthma symptoms in patients four years of age and over. It has a rapid onset and short duration of action that makes it particularly useful for the treatment of symptoms during intermittent attacks, prevention of exercise-induced bronchoconstriction, etc.



Sino-GTZ project

A Sino-GTZ Proklima pilot project on alternatives to methyl bromide (MeBr) was implemented during 2000-01. During implementation of the project, 12 farmers from Beijing visited the Scientific Demonstration Garden and Gaolin Township. After detailed illustration, two farmers implemented substrate cultivation, 9 farmers opted for deep digging and substrate seedling while one farmer conducted scientific trials in a greenhouse. The alternatives tested were deep digging plus organic amendment, substrate, low dosage MS plus solarization. It has been concluded that the use of alternatives to MeBr is highly related to the level of economic development. Farmers in less developed areas like deep digging + organic amendment that needs low input but more labour, while farmers in Beijing, where the economy is better developed, opted for more promising techniques such as substrate and grafting.

Tests were also undertaken to assess the benefits of float system for controlling tobacco diseases and pest insects as well as application of MeBr in tobacco transplant production using float system. Float system is a new seeding producing technology that produces seedlings from a tray filled with soil-less medium and floated in a water bed in a greenhouse or covered outdoor water bed; with proper temperature and humidity as well as nutrient solution, a healthy and disease or pest-free tobacco transplant can be produced. Seedlings produced by this method are healthier than those of conventional seedbeds since the covers of the water beds block insects from transmitting diseases.

The substrate medium used in float systems has to be sterilized before farmers use it to fill the trays. Three methods have been identified in China for sterilizing the media steam, a hot oil circulation system and fumigation by MeBr. Dali Tobacco Research Institute conducted a project on a hot oil circulation system powered by coal to sterilize the media and obtained promising results. MeBr can be used for sterilizing float trays and the inside of the covers used in outdoor water beds. Efficacy tests of MeBr on TMV and CMV are being carried out. 
(Methyl Bromide Action in China, No. 8, August 2002)


Technology and products for servicing equipment

Uniqema, Malaysia, offers technology and products for use by the service segment of the refrigeration industry. The Uniqema Rapid Retrofit (URR) converts systems using CFC or HCFC refrigerants to operate with non-ozone depleting refrigerant gases such as R-134a. Emkarate RL Opti-Flush is a product designed to remove deposits and impurities during retrofit and cleaning operations.

The step-by-step Rapid Retrofit procedure is quick, easy to understand and can be completed in only a few hours. Mineral oil content can be reduced to less than 5 per cent in a single URR procedure while performance-sapping contaminants are removed simultaneously. The field-tested technique can be utilized on low and medium temperature systems. It minimizes the use of virgin polyol ester lubricant than feasible with typical retrofit methods. URR can be used on a single compressor, all the way up to a multi-compressor rack system.
The use of Emkarate RL Opti-Flush during a Rapid Retrofit procedure saves time and money while delivering better performance. It features improved cleaning performance that seeks out and removes both surface deposits and impurities in the system.

Contact: Uniqema, Level 13A, Menara John Hancock, 6, Jalan Gelenggang, Damansara Heights, Kuala Lumpur 50490, Malaysia. Tel: +60 (3) 2547 878; Fax: +60 (3) 2503 340; 


HC-based solar vaccine cooler

Solarchill is a new cooling technology developed as a cooperative project between Greenpeace International, GTZ of Germany, UNICEF, WHO, UNEP DTIE, the Danish Technological Institute and industry. Powered by solar panels, Solarchill uses the hydrocarbon refrigerant R-600a. It provides a cost-effective and reliable technology for the storage and transport of vaccines under off-grid conditions.

Solarchill replaces lead-acid battery technology with ice-packs and does not require any electronic control devices. It uses simple and reliable technology that is better suited to conditions in developing nations. In addition, a simple AC/DC converter provides the flexibility to use wind, hydropower, biogas or grid energy. 

Contact: Mr. Janos Mate, Greenpeace International Or Mr. Halvart Koppen, UNEP DTIE, France.

OzonAction Newsletter, August 2002

Freon-free models

Toshiba, Japan, has developed hydrocarbon-based refrigerant technology that does not contribute to global warming and also saves energy. The Freon-free Optical Plasma Senzoko freezer/refrigerator employs cyclopentane as the blowing agent for insulating materials and isobutane as refrigerant. Adoption of a newly designed high-efficiency inverter compressor and an independently controlled refrigeration cycle reduces power consumption by 10 per cent. Also, an optical plasma deodorizer decomposes ethylene gas produced by vegetables a prime cause for their deterioration. Other environmentally friendly products incorporated are non-vinyl chloride gasket, lead-free soldering for PCB assembly and lead-free soldering for welding of the suction pipe of the refrigeration cycle and the heat exchanger of the capillary tube. 


Eutectic freezers

Friz-Tech, India, offers eutectic freezers that have been specially designed and developed for places with intermittent power supply. These models have an inbuilt jacket that holds the eutectic solution which can maintain the temperature for a long time. The freezers incorporate built-in condensers to eliminate the use of air cooled condenser and fan motor, resulting in quiet operation and are service-free. These units are available in frost-free/combination models/full stainless steel construction up to 1,500 l capacity. Salient features include:

* Temperature range for deep freezer is between -10C to -22C and -7C to 5C for bottle cooler;
* Adjustable thermostat;
* Castors for smooth movement;
* Eco-friendly and CFC-free R-134a refrigerant charged;
* Lockable lid;
* Minimum energy loss by using high-density CFC-free PUF injected with imported high-pressure injecting machine;
* High-quality colour coated sheets for inner and outer cabinets; and
* Operates on 230 V/50 Hz single-phase power.

Contact: Friz-Tech, 213, Navyug Ind. Estate, T.J. Road, Sewri, Mumbai 400 015, Maharashtra, India. Tel: +91 (22) 4139 593/4122 209; Fax: +91 (22) 4155 177; 


Worlds first CO2 car air-conditioner

In Japan, Denso Corp. has developed the worlds first non-fluorocarbon car air-conditioner based on carbon dioxide (CO2), a natural refrigerant. The new air-conditioner has been incorporated into Toyotas fuel cell hybrid vehicle (FCHV). In the CO2 air-conditioner, the refrigerating cycle needs to operate under higher pressure than that of HFC-134a. As such, the system is equipped with a heat exchanger featuring tubes and tanks resistant to high pressure, and a compressor structure that is resistant to high load and prevents internal leakage. Denso is working along with governmental bodies and industry to create infrastructure, such as developing refrigerant filling devices to facilitate safe handling of CO2. 


New transport refrigeration unit

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Japan, has developed a land transport refrigeration unit featuring a unitary evaporator-condenser (evap/cond) for the first time as a sub-engine system. An 8 dB drop in the engine sound of the sub-engine refrigeration units driving engine has been attributed to the unitary evap/cond. The new TUJ80D refrigeration system comprises a evap/cond unit and power unit, with the evap/cond unit being mounted on the vans outside front wall and the power unit beneath the chassis. The engine, compressor and motor are housed in the power unit. Environmentally friendly R-404a is used as the refrigerant. Used exclusively for refrigerating fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, frozen foods, etc., the refrigeration system can adjust temperature in the van between -30C and 25C. Keeping in view the larger body, the new units refrigerating capacity has been raised to 9,300 W.


Quick connector for automobile air-conditioners

In Germany, ContiTech Fluid and DaimlerChrysler AG have jointly developed a new and convenient quick connector. This unit enables air-conditioning lines to be fitted quickly and safely into the confined space of engine compartments in the latest E class automobiles. The quick connector will be on-board every limousine of the E class and is also fitted in the Smart City Coupe from DaimlerChrysler. It comprises a sealing piece, a plug and a locking unit. A double O-ring seal ensures the unit is leak-proof radially. This product is suitable for pressure ratings up to 30 bar, as well as for temperatures ranging between -30C and 140C.

The quick connector is available in sizes DN 8, 10, 13 and 16 (in E-class applications). Though the connection can be made quickly without the use of tools, for safety reasons disconnecting is possible only by using a special tool. The low temperature-flexible and temperature-resistant carbon dioxide air-conditioning hoses are lined with a permeation-retarding flexible metal layer and comply with strict environmental requirements. 


Water-cooled chiller

The 1VL5W water-cooled chiller from Mydax, the United States, includes a patented microprocessor-controlled, low-stress refrigeration system, recirculating pump and fluid reservoir. The ozone-friendly R-404a refrigeration circuit uses all-brazed construction for extra strength. The standard extensive monitoring capability feature includes self-diagnostic display panel/keyboard, low reservoir warning and shutdown switches and a 10C over-temperature shutdown and sensor fault alarm. An RS-232C interface is provided for remote monitoring. 

Contact: Mydax, 12260, Shale Ridge Lane, Auburn, CA 95602, the United States. Tel: +1 (530) 8886 662; Fax: +1 (530) 8880 962

E-mail: .


New solvents

Ecolink, the United States, offers a new range of solvents for use in a variety of applications. Triagen industrial metal cleaner is a virtual drop-in replacement for 1,1,1-trichloroethane (TCE). Originally developed as a replacement for chlorinated solvents used in vapour degreasing, this product is now available in aerosol, as well as bulk form, for use as a spot maintenance solvent. Industrial users can clean energized equipment, water-sensitive parts and parts that are difficult to dry. Benefits offered by Triagen are high dielectric strength, no flashpoint and dries instantly without leaving any residue. Its toxicity is similar to that of TCE. Applications include metal, electronic and precision cleaning to remove a wide range of contaminants substrates.
Positron ultra-high purity dielectric solvent embodies a series of important enhancements over hydrocarbon/terpene blends previously used to replace TCE and CFC-113. This product dries more rapidly and completely than other terpene-based solvents, does not contain oxidizers and will not cause moisture condensation problems. The non-toxic Positron is suitable for a variety of electrical and mechanical cleaning tasks and can replace chlorinated solvents. Some features of Positron are safe and easy to use, no hazardous fumes, ultra-low residue, high flashpoint, low odour and high dielectric strength.

Ecolink 2005 CFC-free contact cleaner is a good halogenated replacement for CFC-113. This non-inflammable product evaporates instantly and does not leave any residue. These performance traits, combined with a high dielectric strength, make Ecolink an ideal electrical solvent. Designed to clean contacts, relays and other critical electric components, Ecolink 2005 offers the same benefits as CFC-113 contact cleaners. Ecolink is also available as an aerosol that can be used on plastics, computer components and other critical surfaces.

Select free (A) CFC-free aerosol contact cleaner is another replacement for CFC-113 that can be used to clean contacts, relays and other critical electronic components. This residue-free product evaporates instantly and it has no flashpoint. It is safe to use on plastics, computer components and other critical surfaces. Eco-spray plastic-safe, CFC-free contact cleaner is an aerosol precision cleaner. This non-inflammable product makes use of the latest innovations in halogenated solvent chemistry resulting in a high purity, no-residue, plastic-safe, fast dry formula. It quickly and easily removes dirt, dust, light oils, flux and other deposits from contacts, circuit boards, relays, switches, solder joints and other electronic devices. 

Contact: Ecolink, 2227, Idlewood Road, Tucker, GA 30084, the United States. Tel: +1 (770) 6218 240; Fax: +1 (770) 6218 245


Alternatives for CFC-based products

JCS Automation Pte. Ltd., Singapore, has introduced new machines based on ultrasonic cleaning and jet spray technology. AQ clean series cleans parts prior to assembling or processing. This multi-stage system is designed for use with aqueous solutions. Cleaning by ultrasonic, agitation and sparging are integrated into this machine. Another attribute of the AQ Clean series is its multi-arm transporter. Some key features are listed below:

* Integrated machine with ultrasonic washing, rinsing and drying stages;
*Fully automated controls with user-friendly display panel;
* Enclosed loop filtration system;
* Water level indicator;
* Pre-filter and replacement cartridge type micron filter elements; and
* Full warranty on all components.

TCS series cleans trays for use in the Class 100 environment. It consists of seven stages loading, detergent spray, first rinse, second rinse, pre-drying, drying and unloading stations. Four autonomous conveyors are designed to carry different tray sizes simultaneously. Salient features include:

* Adjustable tray size;
* Enclosed loop pumping and filtration system;
* Friendly and interactive control panel;
* Fine spraying;
* Thermal control with overheat alarm;
* Digital temperature control; and
* Cascading designs.

In the WAD series, Wash N Dry 316 is used for cleaning small parts, especially PCB components. It comprises five stages collection, washing, air drier, oven drier and ejector stations. The entire system has a dimension of approximately 1,000 1,000 1,000 mm. Each station is designed to handle the products delicately. 

Contact: JCS Automation Pte. Ltd., No. 2, Woodlands Sector 1, #01-07, Singapore 738068. Tel: +65 3684 198; Fax: +65 3684 196. 


New cleaners

JNJ Industries Inc., the United States, offers odour-free, CFC- and HCFC-free cleaners. Products under the GlobalTech range include:

* SMT stencil cleaner is a non-corrosive, fast-drying, zero-residue solvent that removes paste from stencils, squeeges, printers, tools and PC boards, and is suitable for both manual and automatic cleaning.
* GlobalTech solder paste and flux remover can clean PC boards, contacts, relays, gold fingers and most types of electronic assemblies. Offering superior defluxing properties, this formulation may be used straight for maximum cleaning power or diluted for use in dip or ultrasonic tanks.
* GlobalTech semi-aqueous paste and flux remover is a safe, low-cost cleaner for water soluble and rosin-based fluxes and for general degreasing applications. It works quickly to remove tough organic contaminants such as soldering oils, waxes and other similar soils found in electronic assembly manufacturing.
* GlobalTech ink and screen cleaner is formulated to remove conductive, resistive and dielectric thick film inks as well as commercial inks. Suitable for use in the electronics and commercial screen printing industries, this product safely eliminates inks, pastes, silicones and most contamination related with fluxes. It can be sprayed on, immersed or wiped with a cloth.
* Global Clean is a general purpose fast-drying cleaner. This eco-friendly alternative to petroleum-based solvents removes most types of inks, including UV curable inks and epoxies, and inks used in lithography. In industrial applications, the all-round cleaner can eliminate pastes, adhesives, light oils and contaminants.
* GlobalTechs isopropyl alcohol and DI water formulation removes most types of inks, pastes, light oils and contaminants associated with soldering, fluxes, printing and most industrial cleaning applications.
* GlobalTech benchtop electronic hand cleaner has been laboratory certified to be effective in the removal of lead and other toxic metals from all surfaces including the skin.

Contact: JNJ Industries Inc., 290, Beaver Street, Franklin, MA 02038, the United States. Tel/Fax: +1 (508) 5530 529/5539 973


Cleaning systems for PCBs

Smart Sonic Corp., the United States, offers ultrasonic cleaning systems for printed circuit board (PCB) stencils. The aqueous cleaning technology comprises an ultrasonic unit and a proprietary detergent. It reduces VOCs such as CFC-113, isopropyl alcohol and 1,1,1-TCA that are employed as cleaning agents. The technology can eliminate rosin mildly activated (RMA), no-clean and water washable solder pastes from PCB stencils such that no solder paste remains in stencil apertures at 10X magnification, provided that end-users follow Smart Sonics cleaning rules. 



Chem and Lube, the United States, offers a CFC-free industrial strength cleaner and degreaser. Future Solv 2000 is ideal for use on electrical and electronic systems. Powerful washing action and low surface tension work to quickly penetrate difficult areas dissolving and removing encrusted dirt, grease, oils, adhesives and other contaminants without scrubbing. It evaporates quickly and leaves no residue. Natural Solv odourless is a non-toxic blend of solvents that offers outstanding degreasing properties and residue-free evaporation. This unique blend is ODS-free, dries without leaving behind residues, is safer than inflammable solvents and allows safe and complete energized degreasing.

Contact: Chem and Lube, 1901 S. 12th St., Allentown, Pa. 18103, the United States.



New propellants

DuPont, the United States, offers Dymel family of propellants for use in consumer, industrial and pharmaceutical applications. The products provide versatility, safety and value for aerosol packages. This range of stable compounds exhibit low toxicity and can be handled safely. Acceptable exposure limit for all Dymel propellants is 1,000 ppm, 8 h and 12 h time weighted average, which is the highest occupational exposure limit set by DuPont.

Dymel A (DME) enables VOC reduction by allowing replacement of VOC solvents with water. It has high water solubility and solvency. Dymel 152a is classified as a non-VOC, allowing direct replacement of VOC ingredients. It has a low heat of combustion and can reduce warehouse storage costs. This product meets strict air quality standards with a dry, high-performance spray.
Dymel 134a/P is a non-ozone depleting alternative propellant for pharmaceutical applications and complies with the requirements of health authorities worldwide. Produced in a separate facility that fulfils current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) criteria, this propellant and its blends are available in dedicated containers ranging in size from 55 kg to 20 t. The chemical composition of Dymel 134a/P is 1,1,1,2-tetrafluoroethane (HFA-134a) and the pharmaceutical grade has stringent purity and handling requirements.

Dymel 227ea/P is manufactured in full compliance with the United States Food and Drug Administrations cGMP and meets the requirements of health authorities worldwide. The pharmaceutical composition of Dymel 227ea/P is 1,1,1,2,3,3,3-heptafluoropropane (HFA-227). It is a medium pressure, non-inflammable, non-ozone depleting fluorocarbon propellant. Dymel 236fa can be used in applications such as topical anaesthetics and skin refrigerants. Dymel 236fa or 1,1,1,3,3,3-hexafluoropropane is a low pressure, non-inflammable, non-ozone depleting fluorocarbon propellant.

Contact: DuPont Global Headquarters, DuPont Building, 1007, Market Street, Wilmington DE 19898, the United States. 



Low-pressure mixing of polyurethane foam

In the United States, Mr. Ian A. Wheeler and Mr. Dean Wickwire have developed a new process for mixing polyurethane (PU) foam. This invention relates to the processing of water-blown PU foams using a gaseous blowing agent, such as 1,1,1,2-tetrafluoroethane (134a), as a co-blowing agent, especially to improvements resulting from mixing of the A-side (containing isocyanate) and B-side (containing polyol) at low pressure. Either impingement or mechanical mixing may be employed.

To obtain results for the gaseous blowing agents that are comparable to those obtained with 245fa, it would be necessary to increase the standard mixing pressure using impingement mixing wherein streams of the A-side and B-side impinge under high pressure. Instead, it was found that reduction of the mixing pressure (to a maximum of about 1,300 psi) leads to significantly improved (lowered) thermal conductivity and free rise density, while simultaneously reducing the amount of frothing and improving the appearance of the foam in terms of fewer worm holes (or blow holes) and less discoloration. Worm holes are long thin voids or overblown cells that enable high thermal conductivity.

The new process can also be used to improve the quality of water-blown PU foam using a blend of chlorodifluoromethane (22) and 1-chloro-1, 1-difluoroethane (142b) as the co-blowing agent. 

Contact: Mr. William D. Mitchell, Atofina Chemicals Inc., Patent Dept., 26th Floor, 2000, Market Street, Philadelphia 19103 3222, the United States.


Foam for loosefill applications

National Starch and Chemical Co., the United States, offers Eco-Foam loosefill produced with an extrusion method. The production method involves feeding dry starch into an extruder that vigorously heats and mixes it with water. The starch melts inside the extruder and is forced under pressure through small holes. When the melt exits at high temperature, the moisture instantly flashes into steam and forms the foam. The loosefill is cut to length as it exits the extruder. A vacuum blower conveys the loosefill into large bags.

The naturally low-static Eco-Foam loosefill is excellent for shipping microchips and electronics that could be damaged by even small discharges of static electricity. It can also be used in the safe transportation of vitamins, glass clocks, software and mannequins. Countries around the world, especially in Europe, are enforcing increasingly stringent regulations restricting the import of non-biodegradable and/or non-compostable materials. Eco-Foam starch-based loosefill provides an ideal solution. 

Contact: National Starch and Chemical Co., 10, Finderne Avenue, Bridgewater, NJ 08807 3300, the United States. Tel: +1 (800) 7974 992; Fax: +1 (609) 4095 699


New injection system

Linden Industries Inc., the United States, offers Froth-EX CO2 injection unit that reduces environmentally hazardous blowing agents without sacrificing metering accuracy and performance. The Froth-EX metering system is pre-packaged as a stand-alone unit. This system accurately meters liquid CO2 for mixing and dispensing through a uniquely engineered, L-type mix head. Backed by a PLC-based microprocessor, an operator-friendly, user-interface panel provides programming and monitoring ease. Adjustable output ranges are available between 8 to 30 g/s. The Froth-EX unit offers integration on new equipment or operates as a free-standing, self-contained system for adaptation to existing machinery. Some of the notable specifications include flow metering, maximum metering pressure of 2,500 psi and self-contained hydraulic power unit for all Froth-EX valving.

The company also offers Penta-Meter, a high-pressure pentane metering system for pentane injection at the mixhead that is typically used for continuous production lines. The pentane blending system Penta-Fusion is normally employed in discontinuous applications requiring poured shots. Blended material from the unit could be piped directly to properly equipped day tanks or to batch holding tanks for storage and distribution to day tanks. Both units are engineered and manufactured to customer specifications. These units replace to customer specification. These units replace HFC and HCFC blowing agents with environmentally friendly pentane, a hydrocarbon blowing agent that has zero ODP and GWP. 

Contact: Linden Industries Inc., 137, Ascot Parkway, Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio 44223, the United States. Tel: +1 (330) 9284 064; Fax: +1 (330) 9281 854.


Dry moulded EPS

Tempo Plastic Co., the United States, is offering machinery to manufacture dry moulded expanded polystyrene (EPS) through a unique, patented, heat-conducted process. This process features accurate mould alignment for single or multiple cavity moulds, calibrated raw material filling (of densities ranging from 0.8 to 10 kg/ft3), and precise temperature control during a completely automatic cycle. The finished parts have:

* Clean, dry, smooth surfaces on which the logo stands out sharply;
* High compressive strength for superior EPS cushioning properties; and
* Precise dimensions for snug-fitting protection and appearance.

The raw material has a hydrocarbon blowing agent dissolved in each bead. When heated, the blowing agent softens the bead and on attaining boiling temperature, it begins to gasify, which causes the softened bead to begin to expand. Tempo has developed a unique method of capturing VOC blowing agent from the moulding process. Tempo captures the air within the building and pulls it into a turbine co-generation system which generates electricity, steam and compressed air. Third party testing has proved that Tempo captures 90 per cent of all pentane emitted during the process and destroys 97 per cent. This concept has wide application in other industries that have VOC emissions and need electricity and heat, e.g. bakeries.

Designed for reliable, 24 h productivity and easy maintenance, Tempos 23 presses handle a wide variety of jobs simultaneously. Tempo can provide for high or low volume production run. All presses have separate heating and cooling systems. 

Contact: Tempo Plastic Co., 1227, No. Miller Park Court, Visalia, CA 93291, the United States. Tel/Fax: +1 (559) 6517 711/6510 123



Decommissioning and destruction of halon gas

Dascem Europe offers a turnkey solution for decommissioning, decanting and destroying halon gas through the use of a unique plasma conversion or Plascon technique developed in Australia. The new plant will offer halon owners with an environmentally safe and fully certified means to dispose the gas in order to comply with EU regulation 2037/2000. This regulation bans the recharge of halon systems from 31 December 2002 and requires complete decommissioning of most halon systems by the end of 2003, including those commonly used for protecting computer facilities, communication centres and switch rooms.

The gas destruction process is based on Plascon technology that has already been used to eliminate over 3,000 t of halons and CFCs. This eco-friendly process has been proven to be better than 99.999 per cent effective. It breaks down halon molecules, reducing them to their constituent atoms and ions that are rapidly quenched and neutralized, and discharged into conventional sewage systems as salt water. The process will be operated using state-of-the-art computer controlled technology and conform to local and national environmental standards. 


Reclaiming CFCs

The United Kingdom-based Lynch Environmental Services has discovered a cool solution to help tackle the increasing problem of disposing waste refrigerators. Lynchs patented machine cleanly and safely strips all the CFC-bearing material from inside a fridge, ensuring almost 100 per cent removal of the ozone depleting gases.

The totally sealed unit uses waste material to deal with harmful CFC-laden foam. Glass from the fridge shelves is fired under high pressure to break up the foam from the fridge lining. Once the foam has been blasted from the insides of the fridge, it is subjected to a milling process that yields a fine powder. This powder is passed through a cyclone generator, which then releases CFCs from the powder. Next, the gases are condensed into a liquid and extracted safely. The rest of the fridge can now be recycled, allowing more environmentfriendly materials to be used and reducing the amount of waste metal ending up in landfills. 

Contact: Mr. Gavin Cameron, the BIG partnership, the United Kingdom. Tel: +44 (1563) 545 049/(141) 3339 585. 


Recovering propellants

Air Products South Africa (Pty.) Ltd. is offering CryoCondap system for effective recovery of propellants during refrigeration recycling R-11, R-12 and cyclopentane. The reliability and efficiency of this system coupled with world-class cryogenic and engineering teams make Air Products the natural business partner.

Cryo-Condap unit employs liquid nitrogen in a patented low-temperature heat exchanger to cool down and capture the ODSs that are released when the fridges/freezers are crushed. The last milligram of R-11, R-12 and cyclopentane are then caught using molsieve adsorption. The exhaust gas now conforms to EC regulations and can be discharged into the atmosphere. Benefits provided by CryoCondap include:

* Exceeds emissions targets: With virtually 100 per cent ODS recovery, emissions comply with the toughest environmental legislations today (2037/2000);
* Expert support: Air Products world-class 
cryogenics and engineering teams provide expert support and consultation; and
* No added waste: Cryo-Condap is a zero added waste system; so it creates no additional problems.

Contact: Air Products South Africa (Pty.) Ltd., 4, Spencer Road, Spartan Ext. 1 1620, South Africa. Tel: +27 (11) 5705 000; Fax: +27 (11) 5705 281. 


Plasma cracking

HUG-engineering, Germany, is offering a cracking process based on plasma technique for disposing halogenated fluorocarbons using thermal steam plasma as a heat source and a source of chemical active radicals in a high-temperature zone. This method completely converts the molecules into substances that can be recovered or neutralized. Plasma cracking is like reactor cracking a non-incineration thermal process using temperatures over 2,000C by cracking highly stable materials like fluorinated compounds into smaller molecules. Temperatures exceeding 2,500C must be avoided in order to limit the production of new harmful compounds by recombination of cracked molecules, especially with oxygen.

In this process, waste materials are injected into the water-steam plasma torch by cracking CFCs. For complete reaction, a high-temperature reactor is mounted beneath the plasma burner. To prevent recombination of dioxins and furans, the reactor gas is quenched to low temperatures. The plasma process can be influenced in a wide range by selecting the plasma gas and the reaction temperature by the electrical input energy. For cracking CFCs, a water plasma is best suited. Utilizing a water-steam plasma, the halogens react in the plasma reactor with hydrogen and are converted to hydrogen chloride and hydrogen fluoride. These materials can be separated and recovered while carbon is converted to carbon monoxide or carbon dioxide, depending on the addition of oxygen and the residence time. Contact: HUG-engineering, Pfingstbornstrasse 64, Wiesbaden 65207, Germany. Fax: +49 (6122) 919 896


CFC destruction

In Canada, Eli Eco Logic Inc. has successfully completed a demonstration destruction of CFCs in its recently completed fourth-generation gas-phase chemical reduction (GPCR) facility. The purpose of the test was to demonstrate that R-12 could be eliminated using GPCR without the creation of problematic residuals. Results have shown that no detectable levels of R-12 is present in the liquid or gaseous outputs and no residual compounds are created. Potential CFC markets for the GPCR include refrigerants reclaimed as part of Refrigerant Management Canadas collection programme and waste refrigerants from the automotive industry. Contact: Mr. Brian Howlett, CFO, Eli Eco Logic Inc.,

Canada. Tel: +1 (519) 8569 591, ext. 205



High-pressure CO2 systems

Sotec, the United States, is offering FyrGuard 2000 marine high-pressure carbon dioxide (CO2) units. The USCG-approved systems are typically installed to protect engine rooms, pump rooms, incinerator rooms, generator rooms, paint lockers, cargo holds and other small storage areas. The systems can be custom-designed to meet specific needs of all regulations and requirements set forth by the various regulatory bodies. There are three basic design types. The first includes small systems (less than 136 kg of CO2) normally used for paint lockers or other small unmanned areas. The second type comprises a single bank of cylinders protecting a single area while the third is a single bank of cylinders protecting multiple areas.

The banked systems employ a remote actuation station, a local station, a stop valve and a timer to delay the stop valve opening. These systems operate on a two-stage principle: the first activates all the cylinders in the bank and fills the manifold up to the stop valve and in the second stage CO2 is allowed to flow into the timer, then the main stop valve is opened to allow CO2 to flow into the protected area. The multi-zone systems employ a stop valve specific to each zone protected and may also employ controlled release of cylinders, through non-return in the actuator line, to discharge an appropriate quantity of gas into the proper area. 

Contact: Sotec, 5800, Jefferson Hwy., Suite E, New Orleans, LA 70123, the United States. Tel: +1 (504) 7333 337; Fax: +1 (504) 7339 090. 


Replacements for halons

Safety Hi-Tech srl., Italy, offers NAF S III, NAF S 125 and NAF S 227 as halon replacements in total flooding applications. These products represent cost-effective solutions for both halon replacement and new systems. A NAF extinguishing system would be advantageous in one or more of the following circumstances:

* When a 10 s discharge time is essential;
* When clean-up of another media would present a problem;
* If an inert, electrically non-conducting media is essential or desirable;
* The weight and/or space versus extinguishing potential is a factor; and
* There is difficulty in ensuring personnel safety.

NAF P IV is suitable for streaming applications and portable fire extinguishers. It can replace halon-1211 and -2402 in areas that contain irreplaceable or sensitive equipment that could be damaged or destroyed by water, dry chemical, foam or carbon dioxide. NAF S 125 pre-engineered total flooding extinguishing systems are available in one-container and two-container assemblies and come with one, two and four balanced nozzle piping configurations. The pre-engineered type of systems minimize the engineering effort required to design an effective system. As long as the nozzle selection, pipe size and pipe length limitations are not exceeded, flow calculations are not required. 

Contact: Safety Hi-Tech srl, Via degli Olmetti, 58, Formello 00060, Italy. Tel: +39 (6) 907 751; Fax: +39 (6) 9077 555. 


Fine water spray unit

Securiplex, Canada, has developed and certified a unique pre-engineered water mist system specifically for protecting machinery spaces. Fire-Scope 2000 fine water spray system is based on a major development in spray nozzle design. A proprietary twin-fluid atomizing nozzle is used to suppress most types of fires, including those involving highly volatile hydrocarbons, while using minimal quantities of water. The sophisticated Fire-Scope 2000 is ideally suited as a halon or CO2 alternative. This low-pressure, water mist system provides highly effective, ultra-fast fire suppression without the environmental problems normally associated with gas and chemical extinguishing systems.

Fire-Scope 2000 delivers a fine spray of mist water that is completely harmless to hot metal surfaces, such as the casing of a marine engine. The twin-fluid nozzle is an ingenious device that combines water and air to produce controlled size water droplets. These droplets are transported into the base of the fire, allowing for rapid extinguishing of large, intense fires with very limited quantities of water. 

Contact: Securiplex, 549, Meloche, Dorval (Quebec) H9P 2W2, Canada. Tel/Fax: +1 (514) 6331 000/ 6338 338



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