Lost In The Din? Not With An Ultrasonic Leak Detector!

Have you ever found yourself in a noisy environment, trying to hear what someone is saying to you? They could speak up, but sometimes that’s not enough. You might find yourself cupping your hand to your ear…this does two things:

*It blocks a lot of the noise from the environment.  This could also be called “filtering” – more on that in a minute.
*It focuses the sound of the speaker’s voice towards your ear.

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“What? They’re ALL still RIGHT behind me?”

Now, this isn’t a perfect solution, but you’ll likely have much better luck with this in a busy restaurant than, say, at a rock concert. Especially if it’s The Who…those guys are LOUD (vintage loud). If you’re at one of their concerts, whatever your friend has to say can probably wait.

You know what else can be loud?  Industrial workplaces.  Heavy machinery, compressed air leaks, cranes, forklifts, power tools, cranky supervisors/personnel…there are lots of unpleasant but necessary (mostly) sources of sound and noise, right here, where we work.

In the middle of all this, your supervisor might just task you with finding – and eliminating – compressed air leaks…like the person I talked to on the phone this morning.  This is where our Ultrasonic Leak Detector comes in: in places with high noise levels, it could be difficult (if not downright impossible) to hear air leaks.

Most of that noise from the machinery, cranes, etc., is in the “audible” range, which simply means that it’s of a frequency that our ears can pick up.  In a quiet room, you could likely hear an air leak…all but the very smallest ones will make a certain amount of noise…but when a compressed fluid makes its way out of a tortuous path to atmospheric pressure, gets turbulent, and creates an ultrasonic sound it is a frequency that our ears CAN’T pick up on.

Not only does the Ultrasonic Leak Detector pick up on this ultrasonic sound, it can also block (or “filter”) the audible sound out.  It comes with a parabola and a tubular extension so you can hone right in on the area, and then the exact location, of the leak.

If you’d like to find out more about compressed air leak detection, how much you might be able to save by fixing leaks, or how this could make your supervisor a bit less cranky (no guarantees on that last one,) give us a call.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
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IMG_1339 courtesy of Rich Hanley  Creative Commons License

Being Prepared

My sons went skiing with their Boy Scout troop this past weekend. It was the first time my youngest, who turns 12 next month, had been skiing, and he had a blast on the beginner’s slope and the tubing lanes. His 14 year old brother, however, is a grizzled veteran, having hit the slopes three whole times over the past three years. He’s quite athletic, though – this stuff just comes natural to him – so he and his friends spent most of their time on the “difficult” (marked by a blue square on the map) and “advanced intermediate” (blue square with a black diamond) courses. I don’t know much about skiing, but I do know that any slope represented with a black diamond is one that I do NOT belong on.

I mentioned his athleticism – right now, he’s in the middle of basketball season, his baseball team’s prospective pitchers and catchers are working out, and right after winter break, his football team began off-season weight training after school, three days a week. In the midst of all this, he still managed to find some muscles to get sore while skiing. Not as many as some of the other Scouts, though, considering the comments I heard at last night’s Troop meeting. They are all, however, looking forward to next year’s trip.

I tell you this, dear reader, because:
1. It reminded me of a conversation I once had with a customer, and,
2. It’s been a while since I wrote anything about Boy Scouts.

Now that #2 is out of my system, the customer wanted to discuss our Ultrasonic Leak Detector. He had recently purchased a Super Air Knife, and its performance made him think of where else he might be able to make improvements in his compressed air system. Since he had flow meters in place already (see The Six Steps To Optimizing Your Compressed Air System,) he turned to leak detection & repair. In other words, he wanted to find out where his system, much like my son’s hip & lateral abdominal muscles, was vulnerable.  Now that he’s finding out if he has any leaks to fix, he can move on to the next step of upgrading their operations with engineered compressed air products.

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And now that my son knows, very specifically and unforgettably, which muscle groups he needs to work on before the next ski trip, I hope he’ll consider some advance preparation next time. Even more than that, I hope that I’ll actually be able to join them then.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
russbowman@exair.com
Twitter: @EXAIR_RB

Holey Leaky Air System Batman! I mean Prof. Penurious!

Well weekly blog readers, it is now time for poll two of six in our effort to see how many of our readers can benefit from our 6 Steps to Optimizing Your Compressed Air System.   If you noticed the results from last week’s blog, quite a few of our readers could benefit from our Digital Flowmeter and Summing Remote Display to get them on the path to an optimized compressed air system.  Now it’s time to see how many of our blog readers can say they run a tight air system.    So now for the poll.

Step 2 in our process is to find and fix the leaks in your compressed air system.   If you do a quick search on the all mighty Interwebs for “compressed air leaks”, you will find numerous articles on the matter.  This link will take you to an article from the Department of Energy that will help you get an idea of the average cost savings that you would see if you were to fix the leaks in your system.  From simply fixing 10 leaks in one compressed air system a company could save $57,069.  That is a lot of dough, not to mention this was from only 10 leaks in a system.  Every time you have a joint or connection in a system there is a possibility for a leak.   The size of the leak will determine how much money you are losing to it.  The best way to handle the leaks is to find them and permanently eliminate them.
The leak detection can be done in many ways; the method we offer is with the use of our Ultrasonic Leak Detector.  The ULD can detect leaks up to 20’ away and is also accurate even in a noisy industrial environment.   If you fix just one 1/16” diameter or equivalent leak, you will pay for the ULD in a year.  Not to mention the number of other leaks it will allow you to find and repair.  The amount of air you save by fixing the leaks will also be measured easily if, you are using our Digital Flowmeter from the previous blog

Once again, it is time for the blog to end.  Don’t forget to chime in on the poll and check back next week for step three in our blog series.
If you would like to discuss any of the information in today’s blog please do not hesitate to contact us.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
Twitter: EXAIR_BF