The Benefits of Calculating Destruction Efficiency On-Site
May 11, 2021
By: Kurt Wepprecht
How a gas chromatograph approach can provide flexibility and sustainability
Put simply, destruction efficiency (DE) is a measurement of how effective an oxidizer works to eliminate harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs). When measured, the DE is a percentage representing the number of molecules of a compound removed relative to the number of molecules that went into the system.
In the United States, it’s typically required to have a DE between 95% and 99% when a control device is present.
When most companies test for DE, they test an oxidizer for an emission rate of mass entering the unit, then how much was destroyed, and finally the outlet is measured. Those measurements are compared, and DE is calculated. To do this, companies will bring total hydrocarbon analyzers onsite, collect sample bags of the inlet and outlet gas, and send to a lab for methane testing in approximately two weeks.
The Gas Chromatograph Method
While that approach is common for most other companies, Montrose takes it a step further to help organizations stay compliant, but also save money and achieve sustainability.
Montrose uses a gas chromatograph to get more accurate readings on-site – not two weeks later. Once we determine the concentration of methane, we can take that and subtract that out of both the inlet and outlet results, so we have a better actual or realistic destruction efficiency.
With this approach Montrose can provide a more complete set of results of the efficiency curve so clients can decide if they want to take off 100 degrees, for example, to save thousands of dollars a year while still staying compliant. All of this helps reduce carbon footprint and can be done on-site.
The Long Run
As you continue looking to the future, the Montrose approach can help add to the sustainability of your operation. You’ll understand how the unit works over the entire temperature efficiency curve, and you’ll have all your data on-site. This grants you the flexibility to make the right decisions to maximize the outcome for your company.
This kind of data gives organizations the insights necessary to make the right decisions at the right time to extend the life of their system while staying compliant and saving money.
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Vice President – Technical
With 30 years of air quality experience and leadership, Kurt Wepprecht currently serves as a Vice President Technical for team Montrose. Mr. Wepprecht supports and navigates national clients with an emphasis on capture and destruction efficiency test programs. He holds an B.S. in Chemistry.