Metal Finishing Guide Book


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environmental controls CONVERSION OF PLATING LINE RINSES TO A CLOSED-LOOP DEIONIZATION SYSTEM BY DAVE FISTER, SENIOR STAFF ENGINEER, NEW YORK STATE POLLUTION PREVENTION INSTITUTE AT ROCHESTER INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY, ROCHESTER, N.Y. Background. An upstate New York manufacturing company (Company XYZ) has a captive plating shop with hard chrome, black oxide, and copper plating processes. The chrome, copper and black oxide plating lines all have rinse tanks to remove any heavy metal residue or other chemicals as parts move from tank to tank. Since regulatory requirements limit the amount of dissolved heavy metals and other effluents that can be released into the sewer system, Company XYZ also has in-house wastewater treatment capabilities to remove dissolved metal from their rinse water. Their method for accomplishing wastewater treatment was changed dramatically in early 2011, resulting in plating process improvements and electricity reductions. Overview. Company XYZ worked in collaboration with NYSP2I (New York State Pollution Prevention Institute) on a Lean, Energy & Environment assessment, which resulted in an opportunity to convert their rinse waste processing in their plating lines and chrome exhaust scrubber. This consisted of eliminating the existing electro-precipitation process and moving to a reverse osmosis, deionization system (RO-DI). The results were consistently cleaner rinse water, reduced electricity use, and reduced maintenance on the chrome exhaust scrubber. The annual electricity savings, scrubber maintenance savings, added cost of resin column generation resulted in a net annual savings of $21,627 with an expected simple payback of two and a half years (after the NYSERDA capital rebate of $25,000). Total capital cost, including new equipment purchase and old equipment removal, was approximately $80,000. Lean, Energy & Environment (LE2) Approach. A Lean, Energy and Environment (LE2) approach was used to identify environmental and energy savings for Company XYZ. LE2 combines two programs previously developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; the Lean and Energy program, and the Lean and Environment program. The Lean and Energy program offers practical strategies and techniques to Lean implementers about how to improve Lean results while reducing energy use, costs, and risk. Similarly, the Lean and Environment program offers practical strategies and techniques to Lean implementers about how to improve lean results while achieving environmental performance goals. LE2 combines both of these programs into a single assessment program. Energy waste and material waste are non-value added aspects of manufacturing, just as much as labor waste. The use of all three aspects of manufacturing allows a company to find significant waste across their entire manu672

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