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Particulate Testing

Particulate
Stack TestingWhat is Particulate Testing?

Particulate Matter (PM) is a mix of very small particles and liquid droplets. Most commonly when PM is referenced in a regulation or permit it refers to all filterable particulate. Particulate Matter can be a number of different components such as acids (such as hydrogen chloride or sulfuric acid), organic chemicals (such as methyl chloride, formaldehyde, or benzene), metals, and dust.

PM10

Particulate matter measuring less than or equal to 10 microns (PM10) is a concern because these particles are so small they pass through the throat and nose and enter the lungs. Once inhaled, these particles can cause serious breathing problems. PM10 is measured using EPA Method 201a.

PM2.5

Particulate matter measuring less than or equal to 2.5 microns (PM2.5) is worse than PM10 because these particles can be inhaled deeper into the lungs causing more serious health problems then PM10. PM2.5 is measured using EPA Method 201A.

CPM

Condensable particulate matter is not directly measured as a solid or liquid at the stack. Instead gaseous emissions such as sulfuric acid mist, ammonium sulfate, and certain metal vapors condense upon cooling and dilution in the ambient air to form solid or liquid particles following discharge from the stack. CPM is measured using EPA Method 202.

Particulate Testing – What to Expect

Particulate testing using USEPA Method 5, for which all isokinetic test methods are based, uses an isokinetic sampling train where stack gas is extracted from various points in the gas stream. The sample gas then travels through a heated probe and glass filter which collects the particulate. That filter is then weighed used to calculate emissions data. There are many different versions of this method directed to different types of particulate or specific emission sources such as asphalt roofing (Method 5A), nonsulfuric acid particulate emissions (Method 5B), baghouses (Method 5D), fiberglass plants (Method 5E), fluid catalytic cracking units (Method 5F), wood heaters (Method 5G & Method 5H), and low level particulate emissions (Method 5I).

Particulate testing using USEPA Method 17 is similar to Method 5 except for the filter is maintained at stack temperature and is located at the tip of the sampling probe. USEPA Method 17 should only be used when specified by the permit and cannot be used when water droplets are present in the exhaust stream.

Particulate testing using USEPA Method 201A separates particulate matter by size using a cyclone located at the tip of the probe. This method should only be used when specified by the permit and cannot be used when water droplets are present in the exhaust stream.

Particulate testing using USEPA Method 202 measures condensable particulate matter using an impinger matrix after the glass fiber filter. This method can be completed in conjunction with Method 5 or 201A.


Common Test Methods Used for Particulate Testing

Test Method

What it Measures

# Runs/ Sampling Times

EPA Method 5

Particulate Matter – Total Filterable

3 1-Hour Runs

EPA Method 17

Particulate Matter – Total Filterable

3 1-Hour Runs

EPA Method 201A

Particulate Matter – PM10 and PM2.5

3 90-Minute Runs

EPA Method 202

Condensable Particulate Matter

3 90-Minute Runs


Who Needs Particulate Testing?

Particulate Matter control devices are some of the most common pieces of equipment in almost every industry. Aeromet commonly tests baghouses, scrubbers, and cyclones to verify their effectiveness to reduce particulate emissions. These control devices can be used in many different processing including lead smelters, asphalt plants, food processing plants, battery manufacturers, and many more.

 Why Choose AeroMet for Particulate Testing?

AeroMet owns and maintains all the necessary equipment needed to perform most particulate tests.  This gives us familiarity with the equipment and allows for quick deployment.  Our in-house lab allows us to perform most particulate analysis without the need to contract an outside lab, saving you time and money.  The knowledge we have gained from 20 years of stack testing allows us to keep you informed throughout the testing process while minimizing your time and involvement.       

Request a Free Quote for your Particulate Testing Project.