Follow Up On Fluorescent Dye and Proper Chemical Monitoring

Posted by David Burroughs on Sep 30, 2015, 9:19:24 AM

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In a previous blog post, we discussed the advantages of using fluorescent dyes and focused a lot of detail on explaining what the dyes are and how they work. In this post, we are going to cover in a bit more detail some of the reasons to consider using these products and what value QualiChem provides in manufacturing the products. 

REASONS TO CONSIDER USING PTSA

Most conversations about dyed products start off with a discussion about TRASAR technology by Nalco, which has been around for a long time. Typically companies consider using the dyed products only to mimic what Nalco is doing with their products. While I am sure Nalco appreciates the flattery, I often explain that is the one of the worst reasons to use these types of products. We then have a discussion about how using these products can help you or your customer and not about copying what your competitor is doing.

How can these products help you with your business? There are several ways it can improve your results or costs of your programs. Here are 2 common scenarios:

  1. If you plan on using automation and controlling the product with a Little Dipper probe or other style probe for online control:
  • “Bleed and feed” control is fine but it certainly does not control within +/- 1% accuracy of your desired target residual.
  • Automated controllers with an online probe have the capability to “flat-line” your residual control at your desired target. If that allows you to not overfeed your product by 10-20%, the savings that can be captured are huge. 
  • By improving control, we should also add improved results by eliminating underfeed as well. This technology has the ability to feed the proper amount of product 24/7 to your cooling systems.
  1. If you do not plan on using automation but just want to use PTSA improve testing:
  • There are several handheld testers on the market and prices have dropped. This has become a viable option for speeding up your field testing and greatly improving the accuracy of your testing, all while eliminating some of the consumable reagents too.
  • Compare a handheld PTSA test with +/- 1% accuracy and repeatability against some of the polymer, phosphonate or molybdate tests. Pretty obvious gains in your testing performance, your time spent testing, and costs of analysis!!

QUALICHEM'S HISTORY WITH PTSA DYES

QualiChem was one of the first blenders to start manufacturing products with PTSA dyes several years ago. While we found that the dye readily goes into solution in most any cooling product, we also found many challenges in doing so accurately so that our customers get the results they expect and demand in the field. If the field tests have excellent accuracy as we discussed above, shouldn’t the products be manufactured with the same accuracy? Of course they should.

Addressing Common Concerns When Using PTSA Dyes

With the dye being added to the products at very low levels and measured in the field at ppb levels, a very minor variance during manufacturing can result in a +/- 10%, 20% or even 50% or worse variability in your feedrates in the field. If you were overfeeding your product by 50%, how would your customer feel? How would your profits suffer with a contract account? If you were underfeeding by 50%, how bad would performance suffer? How quickly would you lose that account?

Another concern is that many common raw materials can, and do, interfere with measured levels of the dyes. If this is not accounted for during the formulation and manufacturing process, then measured levels of dye in the field again will not match up with actual levels of product in the cooling system. The same problems as noted above will be encountered. This is not acceptable for you or your customer.

With QualiChem's proper formulation practices, stringent quality control during manufacturing, and verification of the proper amount of dye, a quality product can be delivered that provides both accuracy and repeatable performance for your testing in the field. We have invested in the equipment and know how to deliver these to our customers and in fact, many companies that formulate their own products have turned to us for blending support for dyed products. 

The use of PTSA in cooling products has really gained acceptance over the past several years as the equipment has improved and costs have come down. The reasons for using this technology has also changed from companies initially wanting to copy Nalco, to now seeing and understanding the value that can be brought to them and to their customers. This growth is expected to continue as more companies embrace this exciting technology to improve control and results.

Contact QualiChem to learn how we can help you with PTSA dyed products.

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Topics: Monitoring Dyes

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QualiChem's Water Treatment Solutions Blog offers helpful information about:
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