TerraGraphics plays a key role in a project demonstrating the feasibility of using a Mobile Atmospheric Monitoring Laboratory to quantify volatile air contaminants in real time with part per trillion to part per billion detection levels. These results are used in worker Health and Safety investigations. The Mobile Laboratory (ML) contains a Proton Transfer Reaction – Mass Spectrometer (PTR-MS) instrument using Time of Flight (TOF) technology. This work is being done in support of ongoing quantitative measurements of vapor emissions. The project goal is to implement selected vapor monitoring technologies that can be deployed to support plant operations related to real-time short duration vapor release events. TerraGraphics provides Project Management, subject matter expertise utilizing multiple Ph.D. Chemists, project Quality Assurance (QA), and data processing, reduction, and reporting.
TerraGraphics ML and associated instrumentation was developed for the purpose of measurement and quantification of various chemical compounds. The ML was designed and built implementing an elevated level of procedural compliance, QA rigor, and instrument automation.
Data from the ML are used to quantify the concentrations of chemical constituents present in the air. The primary piece of equipment used in this effort is the PTR-MS. The PTR-MS is capable of detecting compounds by molecular mass in real time. The primary objectives of the PTR-MS measurements and the use of the ML thus far have been the identification and quantification of volatile chemical constituents. The PTR-MS is supported by additional equipment, such as an ammonia analyzer, carbon dioxide analyzer, GPS, and weather station.
The ML is housed in a Chevrolet 4500 14’ Box Truck equipped with a 5.2L diesel engine. The box has been fully insulated to allow for the ML to maintain comfortable operating temperatures for the operators and the instrumentation. The system is capable of switching between shore power using a standard shore power connection or the onboard generator which is capable of 12-kilowatt output while the ML is in the field.
The roles and responsibilities specific to work involving ML operation include a subject matter expert (SME), data analyst, document control representative, quality assurance representative, field technicians, and technical editor. The technical roles for ML operation, on-the-job training and qualification are performed under the supervision of the project Senior Scientist and SME.
As part of the Mobile Laboratory project, TerraGraphics has assembled a world class team of experts to process, manipulate, deconvolute, and report PTR-MS data. This allows for the rapid reporting of hundreds of chemical compounds with exceptional time resolution at part per trillion levels. Further mathematical workup of this data gives Health and Safety professionals statistical analysis of vapor concentrations, including max/min, means, concentration distributions, and comparison to Occupational Exposure Limits. Advanced data visualization tools are used to plot results in an easily usable form for clients. Using advanced analytical and computing algorithms, data are expressed with spatial and temporal resolution for a variety of chemical constituents at trace levels.