Application Advice

Water Quality Testing in RO Systems – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 10 May, 2013

Tweet Water quality testing is vital to the design of an efficient, cost-effective RO system, and is one of the best ways to preserve system life and performance. Using an accurate Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) measurement to assess the system load prevents costly mistakes up front. The TDS measurement gives users the information they need […]

DH-UMIII-9PTK-2T

Water quality testing is vital to the design of an efficient, cost-effective RO system, and is one of the best ways to preserve system life and performance.

Using an accurate Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) measurement to assess the system load prevents costly mistakes up front. The TDS measurement gives users the information they need to determine whether or not pretreatment is required and the type of membrane/s to select. Ultrameter™ and ULTRAPEN PT1™ Series TDS instruments feature the unique ability to select from 3 industry standard solution models: 442 Natural Water™ NaCl; and KCl. Choosing the model that most closely matches the characteristics of source water yields measurements accurate enough to check and calibrate TDS monitor/controllers that can help alert to system failures, reducing downtime and increasing productivity. The same instruments provide a fast and accurate test for permeate TDS quality control. Measuring concentrate values and analyzing quality trends lets users accurately determine membrane usage according to the manufacturer’s specifications so they can budget consumption correctly. These daily measurements are invaluable in detecting problems with system performance where changes in the ionic concentration of post-filtration streams can indicate scaling or fouling. System maintenance is generally indicated if there is either a 10-15% drop in performance or permeate quality as measured by TDS.

Thin-film composite membranes degrade when exposed to chlorine. In systems where chlorine is used for microbiological control, the chlorine is usually removed by carbon adsorption or sodium bisulfite addition before membrane filtration. The presence of any chlorine in such systems will at best reduce the life of the membrane, thus, a target of 0 ppm free chlorine in the feedwater is desirable.

ORP gives the operator the total picture of all chemicals in solution that have oxidizing or reducing potential including chlorine, bromine, chloramines, chlorine dioxide, peracetic acid, iodine, ozone, etc. However, ORP can be used to monitor and control free chlorine in systems where chlorine is the only sanitizer used. ORP over +300 mV is generally considered undesirable for membranes. Check manufacturer’s specifications for tolerable ORP levels.

An inline ORP monitor/controller placed ahead of the RO unit to automatically monitor for trends and breakthroughs coupled with spot checks by a portable instrument will prevent equipment damage and failure. Myron L 720 Series II™ ORP monitor/controllers can be configured with bleed and feed switches as well as visible and audible alarms.

Ultrameter and ULTRAPEN portable handhelds are designed for fast field testing and are accurate enough to calibrate monitor/controllers. Our measurement methods are objective and have superior accuracy and convenience when compared to colorimetric methods where determination of equivalence points is subjective and can be skewed by colored or turbid solutions.

Monitoring pH of the source water will allow users to make adjustments that optimize the performance of antiscalants, corrosion inhibitors and anti-foulants. Using a 720 II Series Monitor/controller to maintain pH along with an Ultrameter Series or ULTRAPEN PT2™ handheld to spot check pH values will reduce consumption of costly chemicals and ensure their efficacy.

Most antiscalants used in chemical system maintenance specify a Langelier Saturation Index maximum value. Some chemical manufacturers and control systems develop their own proprietary methods for determining a saturation index based on solubility constants in a defined system. However, LSI is still used as the predominant scaling indicator because calcium carbonate is present in most water. Using a portable Ultrameter III 9PTKA™ provides a simple method for determining LSI to ensure the chemical matches the application.

The Ultrameter III 9PTKA computes LSI from independent titrations of alkalinity and hardness along with electrometric measurements of pH and temperature. Using the 9PTKA LSI calculator, alterations to the water chemistry can be determined to achieve the desired LSI. Usually, pH is the most practical adjustment. If above 7, acid additions are made to achieve the pH value in the target LSI. Injections are made well ahead of the RO unit to ensure proper mixing and avoid pH hotspots. A Myron L 720 Series II pH Monitor/controller will automatically detect and divert solution with pH outside the range of tolerance for the RO unit. ULTRAPEN PT2, TechPro II and Ultrameter Series instruments can be used to spot check and calibrate the monitor/controller as part of routine maintenance and to ensure uniform mixing.

Water hardness values indicate whether or not ion exchange beds are required in pretreatment. Checking hardness values directly after the softening process with the Ultrameter III 9PTKA ensures proper functioning and anticipates the regeneration schedule.

Alkalinity is not only important in its effect on the scaling tendency of solution, but on pH maintenance. Additions of lime are used to buffer pH during acid injection. Use a 9PTKA to measure alkalinity values for fast field analysis where other instrumentation is too cumbersome to be practical.

Though testing and monitoring pressure is a good way to evaluate system requirements and performance over time, measuring other water quality parameters can help pinpoint problems when troubleshooting. For example, if the pressure differential increases over the second stage, the most likely cause is scaling by insoluble salts. This means that any degradation in performance is likely due to the dissolved solids in the feed. Using a 9PTKA to evaluate LSI and calculate parameter adjustments is a simple way to troubleshoot a costly problem.

Myron L Meters saves you 10% on all Ultrameters and Ultrapens when you order online at MyronLMeters.com, where you can find the complete selection of Myron L meters, including the Ultrameter III 9PTKA.

Original story from International Filtration News V 32, no. 2

 

Categories : Application Advice, Case Studies & Application Stories, Technical Tips

Testing Hydroponics System’s Nutrient Solution – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 3 Apr, 2013

TweetTDS meter Whether or not you’re a newcomer to hydroponic growing, keeping your hydroponic system’s nutrient solution properly balanced with a satisfactory nutrient concentration can be tough. Regular testing of one’s t solution is required if you want to keep the hydroponic system balanced and your plants healthy and growing. The simplest way to keep […]

TDS meter

Whether or not you’re a newcomer to hydroponic growing, keeping your hydroponic system’s nutrient solution properly balanced with a satisfactory nutrient concentration can be tough. Regular testing of one’s t solution is required if you want to keep the hydroponic system balanced and your plants healthy and growing. The simplest way to keep your nutrient solution balanced is via testing. You must check your solution’s pH level and nutrient concentration no less than every couple of days. To be able to try out your solution you need a few basic devices. You need to get a trusted pH tester and either an overall total Dissolved Solids (TDS) meter or perhaps a Conductivity (EC) meter.

pH tester

It is generally agreed that the pH of one’s nutrient solution should be kept slightly acidic using a pH range of 5.5-6.0. You will find exceptions for this generalization. If you are unsure what are the best pH range is for the plants you might be growing, there are many resources open to guide you. You can find three basic means of testing pH. The least expensive technique is paper testing strips. They’re simple to use but could be difficult to learn. Typically the most popular testing way is liquid test kits. This method is extremely accurate and easier to see than paper testing strips but it is also more expensive. An electronic digital pH meter may be the last available option. Digital pH meters are available in various shapes, sizes, and price ranges. The benefit of an electronic pH meter is that it can be really user friendly, fast, and accurate. However, they are the most costly of the testing options, they can break easily, plus they has to be calibrated frequently if you’d like them to remain accurate.

TDS tester

Both conductivity meters and TDS meters are used to look at the strength, or concentration, of your hydroponic nutrient solution. Even though it is crucial that you know the concentration of your solution, this is because measurements ought to be used being a guideline only. EC meters will almost always be measured much the same way. Two sensors they fit within the solution being tested along with a little bit of electricity is emitted by one sensor and received by the other sensor. How well the electricity travels is then based on the EC meter. The harder electricity conducted, the greater the power of solids in the solution. A TDS meter uses the EC after which calculates the amount of solids inside the solution according to among three conversion factors. Considering that the TDS is dependant on a calculation, it really is only a quote of solids in the nutrient solution.

With this particular basic comprehension of the main difference between TDS and conductivity meters you can determine which measurement process is best for you. When you use a packaged nutrient solution, browse the product label to learn which kind of meter the maker recommends. In the event the manufacturer recommends a TDS, they’ll also inform you which conversion step to use as well as the recommended concentration range for his or her product. If you use a homemade nutrient solution plus a TDS meter, a great general guideline is to keep your TDS between 800 and 1200 ppm (ppm). If you work with an EC meter to test your homemade nutrient solution, a good range is 1.0 to 3.0 mS/cm (milisiemens per centimeter).

This information will help keep your hydroponics nutrient solution balanced and your plants healthy.

Myron L Meters has the perfect solution for hydroponics testing – the Ultrapen Combo.

ULTRACOMBO – ULTRAPEN PT1  Conductivity – TDS – Salinity pen & PT2  - pH – Temp Pen

Accuracy of +/-1% of READING (+/-.2% at Calibration Point)
Accuracy of +/- 0.01 pH
Reliable Repeatable Results
Solution modes: KCl, NaCl and 442
Automatic Temperature Compensation
Autoranging
Durable, Fully Potted Circuitry
Comes with 2oz bottle of pH Storage Solution
Waterproof

Ultrapen Combo

List Price: $318.00 

Exclusive Online Price: $280.50

http://www.myronlmeters.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Material Shared via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Croatia, original found here: http://blog.dnevnik.hr/nathanielwhite566668/2012/02/1629933596/tds-meter.html

 

 

 

 

Categories : Application Advice, Case Studies & Application Stories, Technical Tips

Testing Fountain Solution Conductivity – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 1 Apr, 2013

Tweet WHY TEST FOUNTAIN SOLUTIONS? Accurate fountain (dampening) solution concentration control is essential for consistent, high-quality results in lithography. Low concentration can cause drying on the non-image area of the plate resulting in tinting, scumming, blanket piling, etc. High concentrations, on the other hand, bring about over-emulsification of the ink. This results in weakening of […]

WHY TEST FOUNTAIN SOLUTIONS?

Accurate fountain (dampening) solution concentration control is essential for consistent, high-quality results in lithography. Low concentration can cause drying on the non-image area of the plate resulting in tinting, scumming, blanket piling, etc. High concentrations, on the other hand, bring about over-emulsification of the ink. This results in weakening of color strength and changes in ink rheology (body and flow properties). Correct concentration will allow the non-image areas of the plate to be appropriately wetted.

 WAYS TO TEST

Traditionally, pH was the test relied on to determine fountain solution concentration. Today, however, conductivity testing is recognized as a much more accurate method. Many modern dampening solutions are pH stabilized (or buffered), so only small changes in pH are seen even when dramatic changes occur in solution strength. Conductivity measurement is a fast and easy test which is more indicative of fountain solution concentration than pH. This is true for all neutral, alkaline, and many acid type solutions.

pH is still important, however, with unbuffered acid fountain solutions. Checking both conductivity and pH can provide valuable information. Acid fountain solution is a mixture of gum arabic, wetting agents, salts, acids, buffers, etc. Conductivity will tell you if the proper amount of most ingredients are present, but pH is necessary to check acid concentrations. pH will also determine how effective one ingredient, gum arabic, will be.

 CONDUCTIVITY TESTING

What is conductivity? Conductivity is the measurement of a solution’s ability to conduct an electrical current. It is usually expressed in microsiemens (micromhos). Absolutely pure water is actually a poor electrical conductor. It is the substances dissolved in water which determine how conductive the solution will be. Therefore, conductivity is an excellent indicator of solution strength.

To properly measure the conductivity of fountain solutions:

1.   Test and write down the conductivity of the water used to prepare the solution.

  1. Mix the fountain solution concentrate with the water, using the manufacturer’s recommendations or as experience dictates.
  2. Measure the conductivity of the mixed solution.
  3. Subtract the water conductivity value obtained in step 1. This is necessary because tap water quality can change from day to day.

The resulting number is an accurate indicator of fountain solution strength. Caution: because alcohol will lower a solution’s conductivity, always test solution conductivity before and after the addition of alcohol.

Determining the best concentration of fountain solution is mostly “trial and error.” It can be very useful to make a graph, recording readings for every one-half or one ounce of concentrate added to a gallon of water. Record readings on a graph with the vertical axis representing conductivity values and the horizontal axis representing ounces/gallon. Such a graph will help “fine tune” your system during future press runs.

For “on the spot” fountain solution tests, Myron L handheld instruments are fast, accurate, and reliable. Measurements are made in seconds simply by pouring a small sample of solution into the instrument cell cup and pressing a button. Automatic temperature compensated accuracy and famous Myron L reliability have made our instruments popular in pressrooms worldwide.

 pH TESTING

Even though pH usually is not the best method to check the concentration of fountain solution, it is still very important and must be checked regularly. The pH of acid dampening solution affects sensitivity, plate-life, ink-drying, etc. Also, pH can change during a run if the paper has a high acid or alkaline content. pH, therefore, must be maintained at the proper level for good printing.

A convenient and accurate way to test pH (as well as temperature) is Myron L’s waterproof Ultrameter II™ Model 6PFCE or TechPro II™ TH1. The 6PFCE has a 100 reading memory and the TH1 has a 20 reading memory to store test results on site. The 6P also measures conductivity. All electrodes are contained in the cell cup for protection. Model M6/PH also measures pH and conductivity.

 CONTINUOUS CONTROL

 For continuous monitoring and/or control of fountain solution concentration, Myron L offers a complete series of in-line conductivity instruments. These economical, accurate, and reliable models use a remotely installed sensor and a panel/wall mount meter enclosure. Most contain an adjustable set point and heavy duty relay circuit which can be used to activate alarms, valves, feedpumps, etc. All models contain a 0-10 VDC output for a chart recorder or PLC (SCADA) input, if required, (4-20 mA output is also available).

The 750 Series II with dual set point option has become quite popular in pressrooms. The two set points allow a “safe zone” for controlling fountain solution concentration.

LITHO-KIT™

Ultrameter II 6PFCE, 512M5 and M6/PH are available with the useful LITHO-KIT™. This accessory includes a foam-lined, rugged all-plastic carry case with calibrating solutions and buffers. In addition, a syringe to simplify drawing samples and a thermometer for testing fountain solution temperature are also included.

 

PROBLEM

REMEDY

RECOMMENDED MODELS
Improperly mixed fountain solution Carefully follow manufacturer’s directions, checking both water and mixed solution with a conductivity instrument Ultrameter 4PII, 6PIIFCE and 9PTK; ULTRAPEN PT1; and TechPro II TPH1 or TP1 all test 0-9999 ppm TDS or microsiemens conductivity, and temperature. 512M5 por- table DS Meter™ with a 0-5000 microsiemens conductivity range.
Halftones sharpen and highlight dots lost during run Check pH of fountain solution to determine if it’s too acidic Ultrameter 4PII, 6PIIFCE and 9PTK; ULTRAPEN PT2; and TechPro II TH1.M6/PH portable pDS Meter. Ranges: 0-5000 microsiemens and 2-12 pH.
Reverse osmosis water treatment system monitor indicates membrane failure Test RO water quality and verify in-line instrument accuracy Ultrameter 4PII, 6PIIFCE  and 9PTK; ULTRAPEN PT1; and TechPro II TPH1 or TP1 all test 0-9999 ppm TDS or microsiemens conductivity, and temperature.
Scum streaks across plate after 10,000 – 20,000impressions Check acid/gum levels infountain solution Ultrameter 6PIIFCE and 9PTK; ULTRAPEN PT2; and TechPro II TH1.M6/PH portable pDS Meter. Ranges: 0-5000 microsiemens and 2-12 pH.
Personnel unable to test fountain solution concentration Continuously control fountain solution with conductivity Monitor/controller 758II-123 (0-5000 µS) in-lineMonitor/controller.

You can save 10% on any recommended meter at MyronLMeters.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories : Application Advice, Case Studies & Application Stories, Technical Tips

Frequently Asked Questions – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 28 Jan, 2013

TweetHow long will my Standard Solutions and Buffers last? The warranty on all standards and buffers is one year from the date it is manufactured (see the label on the bottle). If the standards and buffers become contaminated by the user pouring test samples back into the bottle or inserting the probe into the bottle […]

How long will my Standard Solutions and Buffers last?

The warranty on all standards and buffers is one year from the date it is manufactured (see the label on the bottle). If the standards and buffers become contaminated by the user pouring test samples back into the bottle or inserting the probe into the bottle the solution will not be accurate and should be discarded. The life of standards and buffers can exceed 1 year if the bottle is stored tightly capped and is not exposed to direct sunlight or freezing temperatures. If the solution becomes frozen, do not remove the cap – allow the standard or buffer solution to thaw completely and shake the bottle vigorously before opening.

How do I clean the conductivity cell cup on the handheld units?

With everyday sampling, the cell cup may build up a residue or film on the cell walls that may cause the readings to become erratic. Use a 50/50 mixture of a common household cleaner (i.e. Lime-A-Way, CLR, Tilex, etc) and DI water. Pour into conductivity cell cup and scrub with a q-tip. Be sure to get around all the electrodes and the thermistor probe. On the DS handheld unit, use an acid brush to scrub the cell cup. Let it set for about 10 minutes. Rinse the cell cup thoroughly with tap water, then a final rinse with DI water.

The display on my Ultrameter II 6P reads “Error 1″. What does that mean?

This is possibly caused by contamination to the circuit board. One or more of the traces on the PCB have been jumped/bridged and there is a contamination. Possible moisture, condensation, dirt, dried salts or other condensation inside is a potential cause for this display.

Where can I get an operations manual for my meter?

Go to MyronLMeters.com. Click on Manuals and Literature at the top of the page. Once on the Manuals and Literature page, you’ll find application bulletins, operations manuals, material safety data sheets, and product datasheets.  All are free, downloadable pdf files.

How do I pick the correct range module for my Monitor or Monitor/Controller?

Pick a range module that covers 2/3 of your operating range. If you pick a range module that is too broad, then your accuracy will suffer or it will not show a number on the display. For example, if your operating range is 100-150 microsiemens, a range module of 0-200 microsiemens (-115) would be a good choice. A range module of 0- 5,000 microsiemens (-123) would not be a good choice for this application

Got questions? Visit us at MyronLMeters.com and Ask An Expert.

 

 

 

 

Categories : Application Advice, Care and Maintenance, Product Updates, Technical Tips

Reusing Greywater – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 15 Dec, 2012

TweetGreywater is water from your bathroom sinks, showers, tubs, and washing machines. It is not water that has come into contact with feces, either from the toilet or from washing diapers. Greywater may contain traces of dirt, food, grease, hair, and certain household cleaning products. While greywater may look “dirty,” it is a safe and […]

Greywater is water from your bathroom sinks, showers, tubs, and washing machines. It is not water that has come into contact with feces, either from the toilet or from washing diapers.

Greywater may contain traces of dirt, food, grease, hair, and certain household cleaning products. While greywater may look “dirty,” it is a safe and even beneficial source of irrigation water in a yard. If released into rivers, lakes, or estuaries, the nutrients in greywater become pollutants, but to plants, they are valuable fertilizer. Aside from the obvious benefits of saving water (and money on your water bill), reusing your greywater keeps it out of the sewer or septic system, thereby reducing the chance that it will pollute local water bodies. Reusing greywater for irrigation reconnects urban residents and our backyard gardens to the natural water cycle.

The easiest way to use greywater is to pipe it directly outside and use it to water ornamental plants or fruit trees. Greywater can be used directly on vegetables as long as it doesn’t touch edible parts of the plants. In any greywater system, it is essential to put nothing toxic down the drain–no bleach, no dye, no bath salts, no cleanser, no shampoo with unpronounceable ingredients, and no products containing boron, which is toxic to plants. It is crucial to use all-natural, biodegradable soaps whose ingredients do not harm plants. Most powdered detergent, and some liquid detergent, is sodium based, but sodium can keep seeds from sprouting and destroy the structure of clay soils. Choose salt-free liquid soaps. While you’re at it, watch out for your own health: “natural” body products often contain substances toxic to humans, including parabens, stearalkonium chloride, phenoxyethanol, polyethelene glycol (PEG), and synthetic fragrances.

For residential greywater systems simple designs are best. With simple systems you are not able to send greywater into an existing drip irrigation system, but must shape your landscape to allow water to infiltrate the soil. We recommend simple, low-tech systems that use gravity instead of pumps. We prefer irrigation systems that are designed to avoid clogging, rather than relying on filters and drip irrigation.

Greywater reuse can increase the productivity of sustainable backyard ecosystems that produce food, clean water, and shelter wildlife. Such systems recover valuable “waste” products–greywater, household compost, and humanure–and reconnect their human inhabitants to ecological cycles. Appropriate technologies for food production, water, and sanitation in the industrialized world can replace the cultural misconception of “wastewater” with the possibility of a life-generating water culture.

More complex systems are best suited for multi-family, commercial, and industrial scale systems. These systems can treat and reuse large volumes of water, and play a role in water conservation in dense urban housing developments, food processing and manufacturing facilities, schools, universities, and public buildings. Because complex systems rely on pumps and filtration systems, they are often designed by an engineer, are expensive to install and may require regular maintenance.

Basic Greywater Guidelines

Greywater is different from fresh water and requires different guidelines for it to be reused.
1. Don’t store greywater (more than 24 hours). If you store greywater the nutrients in it will start to break down, creating bad odors.
2. Minimize contact with greywater. Greywater could potentially contain a pathogen if an infected person’s feces got into the water, so your system should be designed for the water to soak into the ground and not be available for people or animals to drink.
3. Infiltrate greywater into the ground, don’t allow it to pool up or run off (knowing how well water drains into your soil (or the soil percolation rate of your soil) will help with proper design. Pooling greywater can provide mosquito breeding grounds, as well as a place for human contact with greywater.
4. Keep your system as simple as possible, avoid pumps, avoid filters that need upkeep. Simple systems last longer, require less maintenance, require less energy and cost less money.
5. Install a 3-way valve for easy switching between the greywater system and the sewer/septic.
6. Match the amount of greywater your plants will receive with their irrigation needs.

Types of simple systems

From the Washing Machine

Washing machines are typically the easiest source of greywater to reuse because greywater can be diverted without cutting into existing plumbing. Each machine has an internal pump that automatically pumps out the water- you can use that to your advantage to pump the greywater directly to your plants.

Laundry Drum

Drum should be strapped to wall for safety.

 

 

 

 

 

 

An example of a laundry drum system.

If you don’t want  to invest much money in the system (maybe you are a renter), or have a lot of hardscape (concrete/patio) between your house and the area to irrigate, try a laundry drum system.

Wash water is pumped into a “drum,” a large barrel or temporary storage called a surge tank. At the bottom of the drum the water drains out into a hose that is moved around the yard to irrigate. This is the cheapest and easiest system to install, but requires constant moving of the hose for it to be effective at irrigating.

Laundry to Landscape (aka drumless laundry)

The laundry to landscape system gives you flexibility in what plants you’re able irrigate and takes very little maintenance.

In this system, the hose leaving the washing machine is attached to a valve that allows for easy switching between the greywater system and the sewer. The greywater goes to 1″ irrigation line with outlets sending water to specific plants. This system is low cost, easy to install, and gives huge flexibility for irrigation. In most situations this is the number one place to start when choosing a greywater system.

From the Shower

Showers are a great source of greywater- they usually produce a lot of relatively clean water. To have a simple, effective shower system you will want a gravity-based system (no pump). If your yard is located uphill from the house, then you’ll need to have a pumped system.

Branched Drain:

Greywater in this system flows through standard (1 1/2″ size) drainage pipe, by gravity, always sloping downward at 2% slope, or 1/4 inch drop for every foot traveled horizontally, and the water is divided up into smaller and smaller quantities using a plumbing fitting that splits the flow. The final outlet of each branch flows into a mulched basin, usually to irrigate the root zone of trees or other large perennials. Branched drain systems are time consuming to install, but once finished require very little maintenance and work well for the long term.

 

 

 

 

 

An example of a branched drain system .

From the Sinks

Kitchen sinks are the source of a fair amount of water, usually very high in organic matter (food, grease, etc.). Kitchen sinks are not allowed under many greywater codes, but are allowed in some states, like Montana. This water will clog many kinds of systems. To avoid clogging, we recommend branched drains to large mulch basins. Much less water passes through bathroom sinks. If combined with the shower water it will fall under the shower system, if used alone, it can be drained to a single large plant, or have the flow split to irrigate two or three plants.

Constructed Wetlands

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wetland planter ecologically disposes greywater from an office with no sewer hookup.

If you produce more greywater than you need for irrigation, a constructed wetland can be incorporated into your system to “ecologically dispose” of some of the greywater. Wetlands absorb nutrients and filter particles from greywater, enabling it to be stored or sent through a properly designed drip irrigation system (a sand filter and pump will also be needed- this costs more money). Greywater is also a good source of irrigation for beautiful, water loving wetland plants. If you live near a natural waterway, a wetland can protect the creek from nutrient pollution that untreated greywater would provide. If you live in an arid climate, or are trying to reduce your fresh water use, we don’t recommend incorporating wetlands into greywater systems as they use up a lot of the water which could otherwise be used for irrigation.

Pumped Systems

If you can’t use gravity to transport the greywater (your yard is sloped uphill, or it’s flat and the plants are far away) you will need a “drum with effluent pump” system. The water flows into a large (usually 50 gallon) plastic drum that is either buried or located at ground level. In the drum a pump pushes the water out through irrigation lines (no emitters) to the landscape. Pumps add cost, use electricity, and will break, so avoid this if you can.

Indoor Greywater use

In most residential situations it is much simpler and more economical to utilize greywater outside, and not create a system that treats the water for indoor use. The exceptions are in houses that have high water use and minimal outdoor irrigation, and for larger buildings like apartments.

There are also very simple ways to reuse greywater inside that are not a “greywater system”. Buckets can catch greywater and clear water, the water wasted while warming up a shower. These buckets can be used to “bucket flush” a toilet, or carried outside. There are also simple designs like Sink Positive, and more complicated systems like the Brac system. Earthships have an interesting system that reuse greywater inside with greenhouse wetlands.

Plants and Greywater

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kiwi fruit irrigated with greywater

Low tech, simple greywater systems are best suited to specific, large plants. Use them to water trees, bushes, berry patches, shrubs, and large annuals. It’s much more difficult to water lots of small plants that are spread out over a large area (like a lawn or flower bed).

Greywater Policy

Greywater policies differ state to state. The best policy is from the state of Arizona. They have greywater guidelines to educate residents on how to build simple, safe, efficient, greywater irrigation systems. If people follow the guidelines their systems falls under a general permit and is automatically “legal”, that is, the residents don’t have to apply or pay for any permits or inspections.

California had the first greywater code in the nation, but it had been very restrictive and usually made it unfeasible for people to afford installing a permitted system. Because of this the vast majority of systems in California are unpermitted. Using data from a study done by the soap industry, Art Ludwig estimates that for every permit given in the past 20 years, there were 8,000 unpermitted systems built. In 2009 California changed its code, making it much easier for people to build simple, low cost systems legally.

Some states have no greywater policy and don’t give permits at all, while other states give experimental permits for systems on a case-by-case basis.

Images and information by Greywater Action used above are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License., original found here: http://greywateraction.org/content/about-greywater-reuse

Categories : Application Advice, Case Studies & Application Stories, Technical Tips

Measuring Free Chlorine – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 25 Nov, 2012

TweetChlorine Residuals The presence of free chlorine in drinking water indicates that: 1) a sufficient amount of chlorine was added to the water to inactivate most of the bacteria and viruses that cause diarrheal disease; and, 2) the water is protected from recontamination during transport to the home, and during storage of water in the […]

Chlorine Residuals
The presence of free chlorine in drinking water indicates that: 1) a sufficient amount of chlorine was added to the water to inactivate most of the bacteria and viruses that cause diarrheal disease; and, 2) the water is protected from recontamination during transport to the home, and during storage of water in the household. Because the presence of free residual chlorine in drinking water indicates the likely absence of disease-causing organisms, it is used as one measure of the potability of drinking water.

Adding Chlorine
When chlorine is added to water as a disinfectant, a series of reactions occurs. These reactions are graphically depicted later in this article. The first of these reactions occurs when organic materials and metals present in the water react with the chlorine and transform it into compounds that are unavailable for disinfection. The amount of chlorine used in these reactions is termed the chlorine demand of the water. Any remaining chlorine concentration after the chlorine demand is met is termed total chlorine. Total chlorine is further subdivided into: 1) the amount of chlorine that then reacts with nitrates present in the water and is transformed into compounds that are much less effective disinfectants than free chlorine (termed combined chlorine); and, 2) the free chlorine, which is the chlorine available to inactivate disease-causing organisms, and is thus a measure used to determine the potability of water.

For example, when chlorine is added to completely pure water the chlorine demand will be zero, and there will be no nitrates present, so no combined chlorine will be formed. Thus, the free chlorine concentration will be equal to the concentration of chlorine added. When chlorine is added to natural waters, especially water from surface sources such as rivers, organic material will exert a chlorine demand, and combined chlorine will be formed by reaction with nitrates. Thus, the free chlorine concentration will be less than the concentration of chlorine initially
added.

Chlorine Addition Flow Chart

Testing Free Chlorine in Drinking Water

Testing free chlorine is recommended in the following circumstances:
• To conduct dosage testing in project areas
• To monitor and evaluate projects by testing stored drinking water in households

The goal of dosage testing is to determine how much sodium hypochlorite solution to add to water that will be used for drinking to maintain free chlorine residual in the water for the average time of storage of water in the household (typically 24 hours). This goal differs from the goal of infrastructure-based (piped) water treatment systems, whose aim is effective disinfection at the endpoints (i.e., water taps) of the system. The WHO recommends “a residual concentration of free chlorine of greater than or equal to 0.5 mg/litre after at least 30 minutes contact time at pH less than 8.0.” This definition is only appropriate for users who obtain water directly from a flowing tap. A free chlorine level of 0.5 mg/L can maintain the quality of water through a distribution network, but is not optimal to maintain the quality of the water when it is stored in the home in a bucket or jerry can for 24 hours.

Recommendations:
1. At 1 hour after the addition of sodium hypochlorite solution to water there should be no more than 2.0 mg/L of free chlorine residual present (this ensures the water does not have an unpleasant taste or odor).
2. At 24 hours after the addition of sodium hypochlorite to water in containers that are used by families for water storage there should be a minimum of 0.2 mg/L of free chlorine residual present (this ensures microbiologically clean water).
This methodology is approved by the World Health Organization (WHO), and is graphically depicted below. The maximum allowable WHO value for free chlorine residual in drinking water is 5 mg/L. The minimum recommended WHO value for free chlorine residual in treated drinking water is 0.2 mg/L. CDC recommends not exceeding 2.0 mg/L due to taste concerns, and chlorine residual decays over time in stored water.

sample chlorine decay curve

1. Free Chlorine as an Indicator of Sanitizing Strength

Chlorine, which kills bacteria by way of its power as an oxidizing agent, is the most popular germicide used in water treatment. Chlorine is not only used as a primary disinfectant, but also to establish a sufficient residual level of Free Available Chlorine (FAC) for ongoing disinfection.

FAC is the chlorine that remains after a certain amount is consumed by killing bacteria or reacting with other organic (ammonia, fecal matter) or inorganic (metals, dissolved CO2, Carbonates, etc) chemicals in solution. Measuring the amount of residual free chlorine in treated water is a well accepted method for determining its effectiveness in microbial control.

The Myron L Company FCE method for measuring residual disinfecting power is based on ORP, the specific chemical attribute of chlorine (and other oxidizing germicides) that kills bacteria and microbes.

2. FCE Free Chlorine Unit

The 6PIIFCE is the first handheld device to detect free chlorine directly, by measuring ORP. The ORP value is converted to a concentration reading (ppm) using a conversion table developed by Myron L Company through a series of experiments that precisely controlled chlorine levels and excluded interferants.

Other test methods typically rely on the user visually or digitally interpreting a color change resulting from an added reagent-dye. The reagent used radically alters the sample’s pH and converts the various chlorine species present into a single, easily measured species. This ignores the effect of changing pH on free chlorine effectiveness and disregards the fact that some chlorine species are better or worse sanitizers than others.

The Myron L Company 6PIIFCE avoids these pitfalls. The chemistry of the test sample is left unchanged from the source water. It accounts for the effect of pH on chlorine effectiveness by including pH in its calculation. For these reasons, the Ultrameter II’s FCE feature provides the best reading-to-reading picture of the rise and fall in sanitizing effectivity of free available chlorine.

The 6PIIFCE also avoids a common undesirable characteristic of other ORP-based methods by including a unique Predictive ORP value in its FCE calculation. This feature, based on a proprietary model for ORP sensor behavior, calculates a final stabilized ORP value in 1 to 2 minutes rather than the 10 to 15 minutes or more that is typically required for an ORP measurement.

Categories : Application Advice, Science and Industry Updates

Buying and Using a pH Meter for Food Processing – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 2 Oct, 2012

TweetWhat is pH and why do I need to measure it? pH measures the amount of acidity or alkalinity in a food or solution using a numerical scale between  1 and 14. A pH value of 1 is most acidic, a pH value of 7 is neutral, and values above 7 are referred to as […]

What is pH and why do I need to measure it?

pH measures the amount of acidity or alkalinity in a food or solution using a numerical scale between  1 and 14. A pH value of 1 is most acidic, a pH value of 7 is neutral, and values above 7 are referred to as basic or alkaline. Acidified foods have a pH value less than or equal to 4.6. The proper pH of a canned food product can be critical to ensuring the safety of the product. It is very important that pH testing be done correctly and accurately.

How is pH measured?

If you process acidified foods, you will be required to monitor the pH of the product that you produce. Depending on the pH of the product, you may be able to use paper pH strips (often referred to as litmus paper), or required to use a pH meter. Paper strips that measure pH rely on a color change in the paper to indicate product pH. Paper strips can be used to measure pH if the product pH is less than 4.0. Paper strips are an inexpensive way to test pH, but can be inaccurate or difficult to read. A pH meter measures the amount of hydrogen-ion (acid) in solution using a glass electrode immersed in the solution. A pH meter must be used when product pH is greater than, or equal to, 4.0. If you are canning acidified foods, accurately monitoring and recording the product pH is key to knowing that you are selling a safe product.

What is equilibrium pH?

Equilibrium pH is the pH of a food product after the added acid has reached throughout the food; the pH of the acid brine and the food that have equilibrated.  When you monitor pH as part of process monitoring, it is the equilibrium pH that you are measuring. For a proper pH reading, you should test the pH of the product roughly 24 hours after processing, once the jars have cooled to room temperature and stabilized. Do not take the pH of a product just before or right after canning because it will not be an accurate measure of the equilibrium pH.

What should I look for if I need to purchase a pH meter?

If you are required to check your product pH with a meter, there are several things to consider.

Accuracy. Accuracy is listed as a range of +0.XX pH units. This means that the meter may read so many pH units above or below the actual pH of the product. Purchase a pH meter with an accuracy of +0.02 units or better. For instance, a pH meter with an accuracy of

+0.01 is a good choice. A pH meter with an accuracy of +0.10 is not a good choice, it is not accurate enough for all products.

Calibration.

All pH meters must be calibrated (checked against a known standard) to assure accuracy. Standards are colored liquids of known pH. Buy a meter that uses at least a 2-point calibration; for acidified foods you will calibrate your meter with pH 4.0 and 7.0 buffers.

Electrode. The electrode is the part of the instrument that is immersed in solution. When considering which pH meter to purchase, consider the cost of replacement electrodes. Some  electrodes  have  special  non-clog  tips  and  these  may  be  useful  is  you  will  be measuring the pH of foods that are not easily blended.

Temperature. pH readings are affected by temperature. In order to get an accurate reading, the pH meter must be calibrated at the same temperature as the samples being tested. More expensive meters will compensate for variations in sample temperature (too warm or too cold). Myron L meters have automatic temperature compensation. If you can afford a meter with this feature, it’s nice to have.

What should I buy?

The cost of a pH meter ranges from under $100 to well over $500.  As a starting point, there are several styles that small food and beverage processors currently use.

Testing the Equilibrium pH of an Acidified Food Product

1.   Open one jar and take a representative sample of your food product once it has cooled, usually 12 to 24 hours after processing. You should sample each batch. Heating will drive the acid into your food product; sampling after processing (and cooling) will give you an accurate reading of the equilibrium pH.

2.   Strain the solids, draining out the liquid (brine) from the jar. Place the strained solids into a blender.

3.   Blend the product, adding distilled water if necessary, to produce a slurry. Added distilled water will not change the pH of the product and will allow for effective blending. You can purchase distilled water at many grocery stores or drug stores.

4.   Use a calibrated pH meter to measure pH.

The pH meter must be calibrated using at least 2-point calibration with pH 4.0 and 7.0 buffers. Myron L Meters recommends a three point calibration.

The pH meter must be calibrated each day that you use it. A pH meter must be used to monitor the pH of foods with an equilibrium pH greater than 4.0.

5.   Record the results in your batch log.

*Myron L meters are used by Tyson, Sara Lee, Gordon Food Service, Better Baked Foods, Schreiber Foods, Homestead Slow Foods, and others in the food

processing industry.

These are our two most popular handheld pH meters:

Ultrapen PT2

 

 

 

 

 

 

https://www.myronlmeters.com/Ultrapen-PT2-Multiparameter-Meter-p/dh-up-pt2-ss.htm

ULTRAPEN PT2 pH and Temperature Pen

Accuracy of +/- 0.01 pH

Reliable Repeatable Results

Easy Calibration

Automatic Temperature Compensation

Measures Temperature

Durable, Fully Potted Circuitry

Waterproof

Comes with 2oz bottle of pH Storage Solution

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ultrameter II – 6PII

http://www.myronlmeters.com/Ultrameter-II-6P-Multiparameter-Meter-p/dh-umii-6pii.htm

Multi-Parameter: Conductivity, TDS, Resistivity, pH, ORP, Temperature, Free Chlorine (FCE)

+/-1% Accuracy of Reading

Memory Storage: Save up to 100 samples w/ Date & Time stamp

Wireless Download Module Optional

Waterproof

 

Categories : Application Advice, Case Studies & Application Stories, Technical Tips

Circuit Board Cleanliness Testing – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 19 Sep, 2012

TweetContamination of circuit boards can bring about severe degradation of insulation resistance and dielectric strength. Cleanliness of completed circuit boards is, therefore, of vital interest. For those companies who have established circuit board cleaning procedures, the MIL Spec P-28809 has been used as a guideline for control. Now a simple “on line” test for the […]

Contamination of circuit boards can bring about severe degradation of insulation resistance and dielectric strength. Cleanliness of completed circuit boards is, therefore, of vital interest.

For those companies who have established circuit board cleaning procedures, the MIL Spec P-28809 has been used as a guideline for control. Now a simple “on line” test for the relative measurement of ionic contamination has been developed.

This fast and economical method for testing circuit board cleanliness uses an Ultrameter II™ 4P or 6P, a suitable container, and a mixture of Dl (deionized) water and alcohol. The procedure is as follows:

1. Mix a stock quantity of solution using 25 parts by volume of Dl water and 75 parts by volume of 99% isopropyl alcohol. The conductivity, measured with the Ultrameter II 4P or 6P should be a maximum of 0.166 micromhos/microseimens/cm.

2. Measure out an amount of the water/alcohol mixture equal to 100 ml per 10 square inches of circuit board surface to be tested (considering both sides of the board but not components), and add 60 ml additional. In other words: 2(L X W) (10 ml) + 60 ml = total solution needed.

3. Fill a poly “zip-lock” bag or other suitable plastic or glass container with the measured water/alcohol solution.

4. Using the measured water/alcohol solution in the poly bag, rinse out the Ultrameter II’s cell cup three (3) times, discarding the rinse solution each time. Fill the instrument cell cup a fourth time and take a meter reading. This value should be 0.166 micromhos/microseimens/cm or less and is the very clean control (or “comparison”) reading for the test.

5. Being very careful not to contaminate the PCB, totally immerse the circuit board in the solution. Seal bag. Allow it to soak for three (3) minutes with mild agitation.

6. At the conclusion of the soaking, pour the solution directly into the instruments cell cup four (4) times; take the fourth reading.

7. Compare the control reading in Step 4 with the reading taken in Step 6 (The higher the difference between the two readings, the greater the ionic contamination). Record this final extract reading for comparison with other boards tested in the same manner.

The level of cleanliness needed can be determined by each individual company.

Mil Spec P-28809 can be used as a guideline, or standards can be established based upon available data. In either event, the comparative method using the Myron L Ultrameter II will assist in the determination of that level of cleanliness.

 

 

Categories : Application Advice, Technical Tips

Saving With Automatic Rinse Tank Controls – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 18 Sep, 2012

TweetProper rinsing is one of the most important steps in quality manufacturing or metal finishing. Plenty of low cost, good quality water for rinsing has been available in the past, so rinse water conservation has been largely ignored. Today, this is no longer true. Tap water costs have increased dramatically. Various new regulations are now […]

Proper rinsing is one of the most important steps in quality manufacturing or metal finishing. Plenty of low cost, good quality water for rinsing has been available in the past, so rinse water conservation has been largely ignored.

Today, this is no longer true. Tap water costs have increased dramatically. Various new regulations are now in effect which limit the allowable volume of wastewater. Others require wastewater treatment. Still other laws tax the amount of water going down the sewer.

These factors have all encouraged many manufacturers and platers to invest in automatic rinse tank control systems. Many platers using automatic control systems for the first time are pleased to discover a reduction in water usage of up to 80%.

This water use reduction provides two major benefits:

1. LOWER WATER BILLS

The savings possible with Myron L automatic Rinse Tank CONTROLSTIK II™ Systems are illustrated in the following table. Figures are based on a 50% water reduction rate; the minimum that can usually be expected. Exact savings depend on several variables, including the type and frequency of workloads, rinse tank size, and type of contaminant.

NOTE: 100 cubic feet of water is equivalent to 2831.5 liters/748 gallons.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. WASTE TREATMENT SYSTEM INVESTMENT IS REDUCED.

The second major cost advantage of the CONTROLSTIK II™ System: Reducing the investment required for waste treatment equipment. Because less water is handled, smaller capacity treatment/recovery systems can be used to meet government water pollution regulations.

Generally, chemicals being “dragged in” and salts that are dissolved from work being rinsed cause rinse water contamination. These solutions ionize and can be measured and controlled by Electrical Conductivity (EC). EC measures both the total dissolved solids and the non-solid (eg: acid) contaminants, thereby giving the most correct method of control. As water contamination increases, so does the conductivity; the automatic rinse tank controls operate on this principle. When conductivity reaches the value selected as a control point, the water valve turns on to dilute the contamination. When the contaminants are reduced by the dilution, the conductivity falls and the water valve turns off.

The unit of measurement for conductivity is the micromhos (microseimens); Myron L systems are calibrated to this unit. All Myron L Rinse Tank CONTROLSTIK II Systems can be used in either normal tap water or in Deionized (DI) water tanks. The dual range sensor can be set on either the 5-500 or the 500-5000 micromhos range. The AUTOMATIC RINSE TANK CONTROL is briefly described below. All Myron L CONTROLSTIK II Systems consist of three components: Transformer Box, CONTROLSTIK Sensor, and Solenoid Valve.

AUTOMATIC RINSE TANK MODEL

Model: 597

Features

Reliable solid-state electronics in a heavy-duty, IP65/NEMA 4X Corrosion and water resistant transformer box enclosure, suitable for any plating environment.

OTHER PRODUCTS USEFUL FOR FINISHING APPLICATIONS

Also available are hand-held Conductivity & pH Instruments for “on-the-spot” water quality testing. The Conductivity and pH sensors are built in for maximum protection. The pH sensor is user replaceable. 750 Series II Monitor/controllers for continuous in-line water quality monitoring. For additional information, please refer to Myron L data sheets, or Ask An Expert at MyronLMeters.com.

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http://www.myronlmeters.com

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Categories : Application Advice, Technical Tips

Boiler and Cooling Tower Water – MyronLMeters.com

Posted by 15 Sep, 2012

TweetBoilers and cooling towers share two major water related problems: deposits and corrosion. As a boiler or water evaporating from a cooling tower generates steam, dissolved minerals are left behind, increasing the concentration of these minerals. Additional minerals are introduced via the water added to makeup the water lost to steam/evaporation. Eventually, the minerals reach […]

Boilers and cooling towers share two major water related problems: deposits and corrosion. As a boiler or water evaporating from a cooling tower generates steam, dissolved minerals are left behind, increasing the concentration of these minerals. Additional minerals are introduced via the water added to makeup the water lost to steam/evaporation. Eventually, the minerals reach a level (or cycle) of concentration that will cause either loss of efficiency due to scale or damage from corrosion. This level can be determined by the Ryznar or Langlier indices and correlated to a conductivity or TDS range. Most people recognize problems associated with corrosion. Effects from scale deposits, however, are equally important. For example, as little as 1/8″ of scale can reduce the efficiency of a boiler by 18% or a cooling tower heat exchanger by 40%!

A variety of water treatment methods are employed in an effort to control these problems. Even with water treatment, it is still necessary to regularly blow down or bleed off part of the concentrated water and make up with lower salinity water to reduce the overall mineral concentration.

To conserve water and treatment chemicals, it is desirable to allow the dissolved minerals to reach a maximum cycle of concentration while still avoiding problems. Because feed water/make-up waters vary in the types and amounts of minerals present, the allowable cycles of concentration will vary. As a result, regular testing of boiler and cooling waters is essential to optimize water treatment programs and blow down schedules. Tests commonly performed include conductivity or TDS, pH and ORP. Myron L meters provide you with a simple, fast, and accurate means of testing these parameters.

Many cooling towers and boilers have inline controllers used to release water from the tower or boiler and feed chemical(s) into the system. The controllers must be calibrated regularly to ensure fouling or drift of the sensor has not occurred. Our portable instruments in conjunction with NIST traceable standard solutions provide rapid verification of the accuracy of inline controllers. This method reduces manpower and the likelihood of disturbing or damaging sensors.

Conductivity

Conductivity is the measurement of a solution’s ability to transmit an electrical current. It is usually expressed in microsiemens/cm (micromhos/cm). Pure water is actually a poor electrical conductor (18,200,000 ohms/cm of resistance). It is the amount of ionized substances (or salts) dissolved in water, which determines the conductivity. Because the vast majority of the dissolved minerals in water are these conductive inorganic impurities, conductivity measurement is an excellent indicator of mineral concentration.

Myron L meters were developed for just this purpose. Models are available which display conductivity and/or ppm of TDS. For detailed information regarding the relationship between conductivity and TDS, please see the our Application Bulletin: Standard Solutions and Buffers.

pH

pH, the measurement of acid or base, is one of the most important factors affecting scale formation or corrosion in a boiler or cooling system. The types of impurities comprising the mineral concentration behave differently at various pHs. Low pH waters have a tendency to cause corrosion, while high pH waters may cause scale formation.

Boiler water

Boiler water requirements can range from very pure to more than 6500 microsiemens, depending on size, pressure, application, and feed water. Once the maximum cycles of concentration has been established, a conductivity instrument can conveniently help you to determine if the blow down schedule is adequate. Samples should be cooled to at least 160°F/71°C to ensure accurate temperature compensated readings.

Boiler condensate

Boiler condensate samples are often tested to determine if there is any carryover of boiler water solids or contaminants entering from outside the system. Condensate is relatively pure water, and values of 2-100 microsiemens are common. Because of these low values, a multiple-range instrument is recommended to increase the resolution and accuracy of the reading. Monitoring the pH of condensate is also important since condensate is very corrosive at low pHs. Treatment additives are often added to elevate the pH to minimize corrosion in condensate lines.

Cooling tower water

Cooling tower water has become more challenging since the reduced use of acid and the elimination of chromate. Monitoring conductivity and pH has become imperative to maintain a proper treatment program. Although many systems have controls on these parameters, the possibility of a system upset is always present. Even slight upsets can cause rapid scaling of heat exchangers.

Biological Growth

Biological growth is another extremely important facet to proper cooling water management. Microbes can cause corrosion, fouling, and disease. Oxidizing biocides (chlorine, chlorine dioxide, ozone and bromine) have been employed to keep bacteria under control. Monitoring of the ORP (Oxidation Reduction Potential)/redox is very useful in its ability to correlate millivolt readings to sanitization strength of the water. The ULTRAMETER II™ 6P includes this parameter for quick on-site determinations.

Ultrameter II 4P  Ultrameter II 6P  TechPro II TH1  TechPro II TP1  TechPro II TPH1  M6/pH

EP11/pH   512M5   EP10  EP  inline monitors/controllers

Categories : Application Advice, Technical Tips