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Ash-like and char-like soot in compressed air

Air testing

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#1 Altermanm

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 04:32 PM

Hello forum members,

We perform our compressed air tetsing twice a year, and in the last testing we found significant amount of ash-like and char-like soot.

The lab the we used indicates the established normal range as 0-60/cubic meter of air .Our result is approx. 200/cubic meter per each.

We use compressed air for blowing packaging containers before filling with the product, to remove possible foreign objects.

 

The question is what amount is harmful to ingest? 

We replaced all the filters and cleaned all the compressed air system. I would like to know if it is safe to keep using the compressed air meanwhile we are waiting for the retesting?

 

Thank you!



#2 Scampi

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 04:55 PM

If you have zero idea what the substance is...........do not use it

 

no one will be able to tell you a 'safe' limit unless you know exactly what the material is


Because we always have is never an appropriate response!


#3 Altermanm

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 05:04 PM

If you have zero idea what the substance is...........do not use it

 

no one will be able to tell you a 'safe' limit unless you know exactly what the material is

Hi Scampi,

Thank you for your response but I didn't understand what do you mean.

The external  lab performed quality testing analysis for the compressed air and the ash-like and char-like soot were without the limits.

SQF requires air quality testing, we have done e-coli and coliforms and the results  are good. Can I stop testing for particles in the air and use only the micro analysis? 

 

Would it be enough for SQF?

 

Thank you!



#4 Scampi

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 05:11 PM

I think i'm missing something

 

Did the lab test for # of particles/sample unit? And that was acceptable?

 

If that's the case then you still do not know what the soot/ash actually is.............and therefore shouldn't be using it

 

Just because it was clear for ecoli and TC doesn't automatically equate it being safe for use (regardless of what the lab says)

 

You really cannot make an informed decision until you find out EXACTLY what the soot/ash is..............it should have never entered a compressed gas cylinder?!?!?!?  Right?  Micro isn't the only thing that can make people sick

 

If you were the auditor, would you be happy to grant certification when the operator knew they had material in the compressed air, but didn't find out what it actually was?

 

Or I am still missing something, in which case my apologies


Because we always have is never an appropriate response!


#5 Altermanm

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 05:50 PM

Our neighbour building was on fire in February this year,

We performed air testing right after the fire and all the results were ok.

We think that the soot settled down and this is why we see it in the compressed air

How can I  find out what exactly is the source of ash-like soot? Are you aware of any lab that perform this testing in Canada?

 

Thank you!

 

 



#6 Scampi

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 06:21 PM

Any large lab should be able to help you

 

Now that you've said fire next door, you really should not be using it, it could be full of carcinogenic materials that are generated during a fire.

 

http://maxxam.ca/ind...-manufacturers/

 

https://www.aircheklab.ca/

 

Just google it and you will get all the good labs that are in your area

I'm in Ontario so lots to chose from


Edited by Scampi, 22 October 2018 - 06:22 PM.

Because we always have is never an appropriate response!


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#7 Altermanm

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 06:23 PM

Thank you!



#8 SQFconsultant

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 11:15 PM

Call your local fire Marshall and ask what labs they use for arson forensics.


Warm regards,

 

Glenn Oster

 

SQF System Development & Implementation Consultant

Remotely & On-Site / Internal Auditor Training / eConsultant

Facility Breach / Humpty Dumpty (Crisis Consulting)

Voicemail: 800-546-1452 // Florida Office Direct: 772-646-4115

 

www.GlennOsterConsulting.com


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#9 012117

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Posted 22 October 2018 - 11:20 PM

Hi, Altermann.

 

Depending on the product or the use of compressed air, you may refer to ISO 8357-1 for compressed air specification. It includes there what could be the particulate limits but again, the criticality will be depending on the type of food and where in the process you apply it.

 

The problem with compressed air is that if the intake is with heavy contaminant is that, it tends to "concentrate" what ever the contaminant in the air. In the case for what you have, like Scampi said would be somehow with risk to PAHs.

 

I suggest while you are waiting for the results, check for the filters of intake air, check for the particulate filters and you may want to purge your compressed air line (and if you have filter in the point of use or filter from where you take your sample) as the differential filter may be too high already to prevent further prevention.



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