unit II mini project (let me know if you need any thing else from me to complete this)


MEE 6501, Advanced Air Quality Control 1

Course Learning Outcomes for Unit II Upon completion of this unit, students should be able to:

4. Examine causes of indoor and outdoor air pollution. 4.1 Describe the environmental, health, and safety (EHS) implications of a spray booth work

system. 4.2 Develop a box and line process flow diagram (PFD) drawing of a selected scenario. 4.3 Discuss the natural and anthropogenic variables causally related to outdoor air pollution.

Course/Unit Learning Outcomes

Learning Activity

4.1 Unit Lesson Chapter 4, pp. 101-150 Unit II Mini Project

4.2 Unit Lesson Chapter 4, pp. 101-150 Unit II Mini Project

4.3 Unit Lesson Chapter 4, pp. 101-150 Unit II Mini Project

Reading Assignment Chapter 4: Atmospheric Effects, pp. 101–150

Unit Lesson Many times, the public has a propensity to focus on air pollution derived from anthropogenic activities such as manufacturing, construction, mining, transportation, industrial processes (e.g., oil and gas production and refining) or even agricultural practices. However, as environmental engineers, we must pause and closely consider both anthropogenic and natural variables that seem to be correlated to air quality. Phalen and Phalen (2013) list several major global natural resources that are also considered to be significant emitters of air pollutants (e.g., particles, sulfur, oxides of nitrogen as NOx, and carbon monoxide as CO), to include the following: dust and soil, fires and natural oxidation, lightning, volcanic eruptions, sea spray, and even biological actions. What Godish, Davis, and Fu (2014) aptly demonstrate throughout this unit is that most of what must be closely monitored and considered during air quality engineering activities are actually natural precursors of formed pollutants (such as SO2 being a natural precursor to H2SO4 as sulfuric acid) and aerosol particles (both natural or anthropogenic). As such, much of the information in this unit will be within the context of particle science. Aerosols The study of particle science, as it relates to total air quality (visibility, breathability, agronomic impacts, and global temperatures), is quite literally a combination of applied chemistry and physics (Phalen & Phalen, 2013). Consequently, our understanding of aerosols as airborne particles is imperative in order to adequately understand the independent variables causally related to outdoor air quality. This importance is only enhanced when we further consider anthropogenic processes (such as our course project related to an


Engineering for Outdoor Air Quality

MEE 6501, Advanced Air Quality Control 2



industrial painting operation) that necessarily have the potential to discharge additional aerosol particles into our air environment. An aerosol could be defined as a particulate material that is suspended in a gas, and thereby dispersed in air (Godish et al., 2014; Phalen & Phalen, 2013). This particulate material (liquids, solids, or a combination of these two matrices) is condensed and is consequently able to stay suspended in the gas matrix. This provides for a mobile particulate that is able to migrate into any areas that an unfiltered ambient gas may travel and inhabit. As such, we may readily recognize these aerosols by different names in the study of air quality engineering, to include aerocolloids, ash, fumes, fogs, hazes, lapilli, mists, smogs, smokes, ultrafines, and many other depictions of suspended particulate matter outcomes. They all refer to what we consider to be aerodisperse systems (Phalen & Phalen, 2013). From a simple physics perspective, we can speciate the differences in aerosol particles by size, shape, density, and even specific conductance. This ability to speciate is interestingly the name (SPECIATE) of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (U.S. EPA) repository of volatile organic gas and particulate matter (PM) speciation profiles of air pollution sources (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency [U.S. EPA], 2017). By understanding the physical characteristics among particle types within aerosols, we can then study the behavioral potential of aerosol types that include particle aerodynamic equivalent diameters, surface area, particle diffusion, electrical charge distributions, and particle motion in the air (Godish et al., 2014; Phalen & Phalen, 2013). These additional evaluations of aerosol particles afford us the opportunity to statistically predict (model) air pollution and pollution plume movement within our environment, even while informing our engineering strategies for coagulating, precipitating, and filtering particles from the air (Godish et al., 2014; Phalen & Phalen, 2013). Consequently, Godish et al. (2014) are careful to demonstrate this with their discussion of mercury (Hg) deposition as they discuss the element’s unique chemistry that affects its movement between the atmosphere and the Earth’s surface. Control Systems As such, a combination of physical and chemical strategies may be employed as we engineer control systems to mitigate outdoor air pollution, regardless of the source (anthropogenic or natural). For example, given that elemental Hg is environmentally mobile and readily floats or suspends in water, we might reasonably anticipate being able to simply filter out elemental Hg from a drinking water source (Godish et al., 2014; Hill & Feigl, 1987). However, given that methylmercury (CH3Hg) tends to remain dissolved in water (Godish et al., 2014), we could reasonably expect CH3Hg to be unable to successfully filter out CH3Hg, and consequently we would need to consider alternative chemical approaches. As a direct application of this idea, it has been demonstrated that one effective means of removing CH3Hg from water is to chemically coagulate the CH3Hg particle, then physically filter the total dissolved organic material (DOM) for effective pollutant removal (Henneberry et al., 2011). This approach of employing both physical and chemical processes in tandem as engineering controls for air quality is the strategic approach that is stressed throughout the textbook. As a reminder, the more we can engineer the hazard out of the work system, the higher our success rate will be for controlling the work system and subsequently lowering the risks to humans and the environment (Manuele, 2014). Let’s look at another practical application of this combined approach as we consider our course project work for this unit. In our course project, we are provided with a scenario where you are an air quality engineering consultant tasked with conducting a preliminary permitting (“Permit by Rule” or PBR) evaluation of a painting operation’s facility for a given state’s air permit limits. You may choose from one of three scenario options of an aircraft manufacturing exterior coating paint booth, a rail tank car interior lining process, or a vehicle exterior coating


Smogs, Smokes

Fumes, Fogs


Hazes, Mists



Figure 1. Common aerodisperse system terms

MEE 6501, Advanced Air Quality Control 3



paint booth. This becomes important when we consider states with high-concentration air quality cities. For example, we understand that air quality in Houston, Texas, has apparently become worse over time, even with stringent air quality control standards having been in place for over 30 years (Godish et al., 2014). As an air quality engineer, you would first obtain a copy of the affected state’s air emissions permitting guidance document in order to understand the permitting requirements and the steps necessary to calculate forecasted air emissions of gases, aerosols, and particulate matter. Within the affected state’s guidance document, we would quickly review the standards to find the typical emission limits of 25 tons per year of the following: (a) volatile organic compounds (VOC), (b) sulfur dioxide (SO2), (c) inhalable particulate matter (by size) or PM10, and (d) any other air contaminants. Further, we would typically find that there is a 250 ton per year limit for CO and NOx. Finally, we would find that the affected state will typically pose specific limits for VOC emissions per year, per (paint) facility, as well as solvents and exempt solvents used in the operation. Understandably, this may cause us some initial alarm at how to address and measure all of these quantitative emission limits. Consequently, we now must first gather information from our business records, paint vendor, and Material Safety Data Sheet (now the more current Globally Harmonized System/Safety Data Sheet or SDS) as a starting point. Considering the chemical compounds present in every single product to be used in the operations is precisely where we must begin. Further, we will need information related to the paint facility’s ventilation system, coating cure heaters, and even the facility’s operational schedule anticipated for the work system. For our scenario, the client has provided us with all of the SDS documents, heater technical data sheets, ventilation system technical data sheets, paint facility drawings, and a clear idea of the anticipated hours of operation for the facility. This information is tabulated for you in the scenario. However, here is how we would have researched, documented, and tabulated that same information from the documents provided by the client. Let’s go through these critical steps together. First, you would do what every safety and environmental engineer must do. In order to fully understand a given work system, develop a process flow diagram (PFD) of the work system. This affords us the opportunity to clearly identify all required materials, equipment, and direction of flow of those materials through the equipment. When we can effectively draw an accurate PFD of the work system, we can then more easily anticipate transitional points of materials exchanges (e.g., solids to liquids, or liquids to gases and aerosols), contact and emission points, and ultimate disposition outcomes of emissions (such as through filters and baghouses, liquid scrubbers, flares, straight to atmosphere through emission stacks, and so on). Second, you would look at the SDS information found in section 3.0 (Composition/Information on Ingredients) of every Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) compliant SDS document. You would notice that tabulated within this section are the ingredients, each ingredient’s Chemical Abstract Service (CAS) number, and each ingredient’s percent by weight within the product. You would need to note every ingredient that qualifies as a VOC and its percent by weight. Additionally, you would need to make a note of the pounds of VOC reported on the SDS for the entire product. This would include both the coating (paint) and any thinner or solvent. Third, you would notice the vapor pressure, vapor density, molecular weight, British thermal unit (Btu) values, and other physical characteristics relevant to the air permit calculations in section 9.0 (Physical and Chemical Properties). You would make a note of these values for every product. Understanding the physical characteristics is arguably as important as understanding the chemical characteristics when conducting air emissions permitting. Fourth, you would make note of any Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs) identified in section 15.0 (Regulatory Information) in the document. This information will be imperative in being able to properly calculate our total

Sample process flow diagram from oil and gas industry (Ragsac19, 2017)

MEE 6501, Advanced Air Quality Control 4



VOC emissions in our Unit III work. A clear quantification of VOC emissions is often the most fundamental step for most air emissions permitting processes. Finally, after you reviewed the SDS for every paint and thinner, you would then look to the technical data sheets for the heaters and ventilation system, as well as the paint operation facility drawings. You would note the relevant variables necessary to complete the VOC calculations, ventilation calculations, and forecasted emissions calculations. The subsequent calculated values (that we will learn to work through in Units III-VII) will ultimately be compared directly against the affected state’s emission limit values. This direct comparison will inform us as to whether or not the painting operation will be within the PBR emission limit requirements, or if a full-blown U.S. EPA Title V Air Permit will be required prior to the company even breaking ground on the construction of the new facility. Reflect on the information we have discussed related to aerosols, particle science, and atmospheric conditions within this unit lesson, and mentally tie together the concepts of engineering air quality through environmental controls for optimal outdoor air quality. Your clear understanding of these concepts, coupled with the Unit I concepts, will inform your learning throughout the rest of this course. Let’s get ready to identify our empirical data so that we can begin to quantify our risks. This is what environmental and safety engineering is all about!


Godish, T., Davis, W. T., & Fu, J. S. (2014). Air quality (5th ed.). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. Henneberry, Y., Kraus, T., Fleck, J. Krabbenhoft, D. Bachand, P., & Horwath, W. (2011). Removal of

inorganic mercury and methylmercury from surface waters following coagulation of dissolved organic matter with metal-based salts. The Science of the Total Environment, 409(3), 631–637.

Hill, J., & Feigl, D. (1987). Chemistry and life: An introduction to general, organic, and biological life (3rd ed.).

New York, NY: Macmillian. Manuele, F. A. (2014). Advanced safety management: Focusing on Z10 and serious injury prevention.

Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. Phalen, R. F., & Phalen, R. N. (2013). Introduction to air pollution science: A public health perspective.

Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning. Ragsac19. (2017). Process flow diagram, (ID 92756440) [Photograph]. Retrieved from

https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-process-flow-diagram-concept-many-uses-oil-gas-industry- image92756440

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. (2017). Air emissions modeling: SPECIATE Version 4.5 through 4.0.

Retrieved from https://www.epa.gov/air-emissions-modeling/speciate-version-45-through-40

Suggested Reading In order to access the following resource, click the link below. The following article provides an interesting consideration of the potential impact of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) on total atmospheric CO2 concentrations. This becomes an extremely important discussion point in greenhouse gas emission studies related to affected industries and municipalities, even as air quality engineers continue to gain a better understanding of anthropogenic versus natural greenhouse gas source implications for our planet Earth. MacDougall, A. H., Eby, M., & Weaver, A .J. (2013). If anthropogenic CO2 emissions cease, will atmospheric

CO2 concentration continue to increase? Journal of Climate, 26(23), 9563–9576. Retrieved from https://libraryresources.columbiasouthern.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direc t=true&db=a9h&AN=92016220&site=eds-live&scope=site