Recent Blog Posts
Ultraviolet (UV) light is all around us, all the time. Although it is invisible to the human eye, it is found outdoors in the sunlight, and indoors too. Even the fluorescent lamps at your office or school emit some ultraviolet light! In very small doses, UV radiation is safe. However, in large doses, eye and skin damage can occur.
Utilizing a higher intensity UV light is extremely useful to spot fluorescence in many different substances. Fluorescence is luminescence (light shining without a heat source) in which light of a visible color is emitted from a given material under stimulation by light or another form of electromagnetic radiation – such as a Spectroline® UV lamp.
FUN FACT! Fluorescence is named after a rock! The British scientist Sir George G. Stokes, named the phenomenon after fluorite, a strongly fluorescent mineral. Stokes is credited with discovering that fluorescence can be induced in certain substances by stimulation with ultraviolet light.
UV light is used in countless applications every day, from laboratories and doctor’s offices, to forensic crime scene investigations, to nondestructive evaluations of critical infrastructure.
Here is a short list of some of the MANY specialty applications that UV light is used in:
Fire inspectors can actually see residual accelerant that has not been consumed by fire. Under UV light, carbon residues from chemical fuels on walls, floors, furniture and carpeting becomes instantly visible.
Ultraviolet light reacts differently with various types of materials. With UV light, collectors can protect themselves against art fraud. UV light can be used to detect repairs in art, furniture, and other collectables, such as marble, ivory, porcelain and textiles. UV light can also detect the age of stone (marble will fluoresce as a vivid purple if it was recently carved, as opposed to a muddled white if is aged).
BEAUTY AND SKINCARE
Ultraviolet light therapy can treat a variety of skin problems, such as Psoriasis, Eczema, Vitiligo (a loss of skin pigment that often appears as white blotches on the skin), persistent itching, and other problems. UV light therapy is usually offered at a medical clinic, but can also be found at beauty spas, administered by licensed professionals.
CRIME SCENE INSPECTION
Forensics relies heavily on UV light to look for fingerprints, as well as blood and other bodily fluids. Using an ultraviolet light enables crime scene investigators and forensic labs to see fingerprints developed with fluorescent materials. When exposed to UV sources, bodily fluids and fluorescent-treated blood samples glow brightly and become easy to see.
COUNTERFEIT CURRENCY DETECTION
Ultraviolet light source scanners make different U.S. currency denominations glow with a specific color and will show whether bills are genuine or counterfeit.
Driver’s licenses, passports, credit cards and many other official documents that have invisible fluorescent markings become visible and can be quickly and easily verified under UV light by a security professional.
Illegal dumping of chemical waste is a dangerous problem. UV light can assist in environmental investigations by indicating the presence of hydrocarbons (chief components of petroleum and natural gas), whether on the land or even in water. For other substances, trace dyes can be used along with UV light; some radioactive substances fluoresce as well.
GEM AND MINERAL INSPECTION
The fluorescence of gems and gemstones is a result of UV radiation absorbed by the impurities or structural flaws of the stones. Ultraviolet fluorescence is used by gemologists, jewelers and collectors to authenticate gemstones, or to determine if the gemstone has been heat-treated.
Spectroline offers an array of powerful, versatile fluorescent inspection lights, including convenient flashlight style, hand held versions, and wide-beam flood lamps. These lamps are shone on surfaces that have been previously treated with a liquid penetrant or magnetic particle, which will fluoresce under ultraviolet light, exposing any flaws in the material being examined. Nondestructive testing and examination is used in aviation, the oil and gas industry, mining, welding, fabrication shops, and the military to inspect all critical infrastructure.
PEST CONTROL / FOOD and AGRICULTURE
To determine rodent presence, inspectors illuminate the area in question with a UV longwave lamp. Rodent urine and hair glows blue-white and is easily identified on sacks of food or intermixed with food grains. Additionally, mold on certain grains also fluoresces.
Security professionals need to track visitors and guests at public place, including parties, theme parks, racetracks, concerts, stadiums, clubs, fairs, theatres and similar venues, as well as voting booths, swimming pools and private clubs.
So, the next time you visit an art museum, examine an antique item, buy a bag of flour, or window shop at the jewelry store – you can remember that these items were more than likely inspected with a UV light source! You can thank UV light for keeping you safe and sound, solving crimes and inspecting critical structures.
"There is greater potential in overseas markets like China, India and Latin America,” said Jon Cooper, president of Spectronics Corp. in Westbury, which makes ultraviolet lighting equipment and fluorescent dyes used to detect fluid leaks in engines, machinery and cooling systems. “In some places, they have never seen this technology. It’s absolutely virgin territory,” he said.
The company, which has 175 employees, began exporting in 1960, five years after opening. It now sells to 180 countries, with the top markets being Germany, China and Japan.
Cooper said exports represented 45 percent of Spectronics’ sales of $25 million to $30 million last year. He wants to purchase a company in Europe and form joint ventures with factories in China and India.
Read the full article here
Spectronics Corporation revealed a new addition to its array of Spectroline® fluorescent inspection solutions at the 2016 ASNT Conference this past October: The VIVID™ LED-based replacement bulb for HID (mercury-vapor based) bulbs. Attendees at this year's conference were impressed with the VIVID™ design.
With built-in aluminum heatsinks, a lower operating temperature, and a high-grade outer casing, the VIVID™ is a step above traditional HID bulbs. For instance, HID bulbs run at higher temperatures and have shorter lifespans compared to LED-based bulbs. The VIVID™ bulb has a rated life of 50,000 hours on average -- that's ten times greater than the rated life of mercury-vapor based bulbs. Additionally, the VIVID™ bulb contains no mercury whatsoever -- eliminating any environmental concerns or dangers. The VIVID™ is energy efficient and lightweight, weighing 1 lb. versus the 6 lb. weight of HID bulbs.
Georgia Reid, Marketing Strategist at Spectronics Corporation, describes the benefits of the VIVID™ replacement bulb and its public reception at the ASNT Conference: "Attendees at the conference were able to see the VIVID™ up close. The crowd was especially interested in the long-lasting life of the LED-based bulb -- fewer bulb changes means less down-time for workers, and less environmental waste. The VIVID™ is safer since it is much cooler than an HID bulb and will save inspectors from burns or other operational hazards. Attendees appreciated the Instant-On operation of LED-based VIVID™. There is no warm-up to reach full intensity or cool-down period -- effectively streamlining the inspection process and reducing downtime. Additionally, the VIVID™ can be installed into custom lamp fixtures that include enclosures."
Upgrading to the new LED-based bulb is simple. In upgrading, the user is assured of the quality and the resiliency of Spectronics Corporation's brand. Spectronics has both ISO 9001:2008 quality management certification and AS9100C aerospace certification. The VIVID™ is one of the many first-to-market products Spectronics' offers -- a legacy and history associated with the company's half-century of continuous operation and innovation in the United States and around the globe.
The VIVID™ offers many lasting benefits. Upgrading ensures the end-user is staying ahead of the curve. Many in the Ultraviolet Inspection industry are moving toward high-investment technology and
greater functionality. For example, the VIVID's™ LED-based technology creates an intensity profile more concentrated and uniform than what traditional HID bulbs can produce -- covering a greater effective detection area reliably throughout the product's lifespan. In keeping with this objective of excellence, Spectronics Corporation recognizes the importance of defining an industry curve, and not simply following expectations. Learn more about the VIVID™ bulb
Spectronics is thrilled to be featured on a recent edition of Fox5 NY News . As the world’s largest manufacturer of ultraviolet lighting equipment Spectronics has always aimed to hire remarkable people and give them the tools and empowerment to help them succeed in finding solutions to new challenges. That’s why our motto is “Innovating for Today, Imagining for Tomorrow”.
Our company manufactures industry trusted ultraviolet lamps and OEM leak detection technology out of a 100,000 square foot facility, employs more than 175 people and distributes in over 135 countries to dozens of markets including Nondestructive Testing, Aviation, Forensics, Laboratory, HVAC/R and Industrial Leak Detection. Focusing on innovation and customer satisfaction has proven to be the biggest factor in delivering value to customers around the world.
Please view the clip below, to see Spectronics Corp. featured on NY Fox 5 News, Made on Long Island by Jodi Goldberg.
As part of an initiative to encourage the next generation of engineers, Spectronics Corporation actively engages the college community on Long Island. Competitive companies like Spectronics recognize the potential of millennials to reinvigorate businesses in our region with tech savvy skills, ambition and education.
On November 16th, 27 engineering students from Hofstra University, led by Dr. Mauro Caputi, an Associate Professor of Engineering and the Director of Freshman Engineering at Hofstra, toured Spectronics’ corporate headquarters and manufacturing facility in Westbury, New York.
The students came from the Mechanical, Civil, Industrial, Electrical, Computer and Biomedical Engineering disciplines. They met with various members of Spectronics’ engineering team. The company’s President Jon Cooper led the tour, introducing the college students to the various departments, equipment and manufacturing processes throughout the facility.
Jon Cooper believes one of the ways to excite and nourish the next generation of engineering talent is to immerse students in a hands-on experience – to display the real-life application of what is being studied in the classroom. Seeing engineers at work on Long Island shows students the culmination of all those years of study and what is capable of being achieved.
One point that Jon Cooper emphasized was the level of operational excellence that is required to remain competitive in today’s manufacturing industry. “Our competitors overseas often have the advantage of low-cost labor. In order for Spectronics to be competitive, we need to emphasize the quality of our products,” Cooper said. “Our company invests a lot of time and energy in meeting – and many times exceeding – international standards and certifications. We invest in both our workforce and our facility so we can continue to lead in the development of new and ground-breaking technologies. Exciting innovation is happening here on Long Island, and our young engineering students can be a part of that.”
The visiting students observed the manufacturing processes at every level of the organization and were introduced to everything from product cycle design and prototype development to the various production stages on the manufacturing floor. Spectronics’ Vice President of Engineering and Manufacturing, Limin Chen, discussed what it takes to develop a product from start to finish.
Spectronics has both ISO 9001:2008 quality management certification and AS9100C aerospace certification. This means Spectronics takes great care in the creation and delivery of products as a whole, ensuring that consistency is maintained through rigorous quality control checks, data gathering, and continuous improvement of their manufacturing processes.
In all, the students were provided a glimpse into the inner workings of one of Long Island’s premier manufacturing firms. The experience instilled a sense of what they can expect after graduation, within the job market, and what is happening in the greater engineering world. Dr. Caputi thanked Jon Cooper and
the Spectronics team for introducing the visiting students to the many facets of a trailblazing, global company located in Hofstra’s own backyard.
About Spectronics Corporation
Spectronics Corporation is the world's leading manufacturer of ultraviolet equipment and fluorescent materials. Their state-of-the-art products are built to exacting engineering standards and are utilized for literally hundreds of markets and applications that demand uncompromising quality and reliability. Spectroline® UV lamps and radiometers are widely used to verify the structural integrity of military and commercial aircraft. Spectroline® fluorescent dyes are used to check for fluid leaks in power plants, nuclear reactors, oil pipelines and industrial facilities worldwide, and were even used on the U.S. Space Shuttle. For more information, please visit us at Spectroline.com.
For editorial information:
Jack Kelly (firstname.lastname@example.org)
956 Brush Hollow Road
Westbury, NY 11590
ASTM International is an important organization that serves as an open forum for the development of international standards in nondestructive testing. The organization was originally formed by a coalition of scientists and engineers in 1898 to address the frequent rail breaks affecting the fast-growing railroad industry. The group developed a standard for the steel used to fabricate rails and called the "American Society for Testing Materials.” It later became the "American Society for Testing and Materials" before it changed its name to “ASTM International” in 2001, as it remains today.
The advent of the industrial revolution -- from steam boats to railroad transportation and large factories -- created a greater need for nondestructive testing of machine parts. Now, non-destructive testing is used in nearly every manufacturing and engineering process to inspect parts, welds, and structures. Standards are constantly getting upgraded to make NDT safe for inspectors and the public.
ASTM standards have been put in place to ensure the safety and efficiency of UV-A lamps used in fluorescent inspection and nondestructive testing. The most recent standard, as of September, 2015, is ASTM E3022. Spectroline® NDT inspection lamps are available in several versions that meet this important standard.
SCOPE OF ASTM E3022
This practice covers the procedures for testing the performance of ultraviolet A (UV-A), light emitting diode (LED) lamps used in fluorescent penetrant and fluorescent magnetic particle testing. This specification also includes reporting and performance requirements for UV-A LED lamps.
These tests are intended to be performed only by the manufacturer to certify performance of specific lamp models (housing, filter, diodes, electronic circuit design, optical elements, cooling system, and power supply combination) and also includes limited acceptance tests for individual lamps delivered to the user. This test procedure is not intended to be utilized by the end user.
Spectroline® meets ASTM E3022 compliances in several of our lamp models.
We certify performance of specific lamp models with rigorous in-house testing.
We record the performance of these lamp models on fully serialized Certificates of Conformance which show that the lamp has met all of the following requirements before it is shipped:
1) Lamp Acceptance Test Requirements
2) Emission Spectrum Measurements
3) Filter Transmittance
Spectroline is a world leader in UV-A lights and accessories. We do in-house quality assurance checks on all of our premium products and stand behind everything we manufacture.
IS YOUR LAMP ASTM E3022 COMPLIANT?
Retrofit/Upgrade to ASTM E3033 on previously purchased lamps purchased after 1/1/2013:
If your lamp was purchased without a Certificate of Conformance, it may be eligible to be upgraded to ASTM E3022. Previously purchased lamps in the field may be required for a return and retrofit/upgrade in order to meet ASTM E3022 compliances.
CLICK HERE TO START A CASE WITH OUR CUSOMTER SERVICE DEPARMENT
A leader is not defined by a single moment but by a lifetime of work and perseverance. On November 10, 2016, eight individuals who embody this definition will be recognized and inducted into the Long Island Business Hall of Fame. Pioneers in business, politics, education, medicine and philanthropy will be attending the event. Jon Cooper will be one the inductees honored.
Jon serves a critical role in furthering the profitability and expansion of Spectronics Corporation. During his tenure as President, Jon oversaw Spectronics’ foray onto the international stage and reinforced the company as an industry leader in the manufacturing of ultraviolet equipment and fluorescent dyes.
Spectronics, founded in 1955, is best known for developing fluorescent leak detection technology now widely used in the automotive, industrial and HVAC industries. Over the ensuing decades, the company invented the first black light counterfeit currency detector, the first UV cell phone sanitizer, and dozens of other innovative, first-to-market devices. Spectronics’ UV lamps were used aboard the U.S. Space Shuttle, and their UV transilluminators and crosslinkers were utilized for groundbreaking DNA research as part of the Human Genome Project. Another important achievement was when Spectronics received the Stratospheric Ozone Protection Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for technology that the company developed to protect the ozone layer and fight global warming.
Jon was recently involved with the successful effort to achieve AS9100 aerospace industry certification for Spectronics’ H&I Manufacturing division, a difficult process that required leadership on many fronts. Team members from manufacturing and quality control had to put forth a clear agenda to hit specific benchmarks that allowed the company to attain certification. Achieving and maintaining AS9100 certification demonstrates to Spectronics’ global customers the quality and care put into not just a single product but the production process as a whole.
Today, Jon continues to advance the company by identifying organic corporate acquisitions that complement Spectronics’ strong standing at home and abroad. Jon always emphasizes the importance of investing in the company’s research and development efforts in order to keep Spectronics on the cutting edge of the latest technologies. As President, Jon leads the more than 175 employees who work at the company’s Westbury headquarters to propel the brand to the next level, and to continue Spectronics’ growth throughout the decades to come.
Jon’s 32 years at the helm of Spectronics has benefited not only the company but also the greater Long Island region. Through his initiatives, Jon was able to build upon Spectronics’ strong foundation and has demonstrated how manufacturing remains possible and profitable in New York State.
The Long Island Business Hall of Fame induction ceremony will be held at the Crest Hollow Country Club. The inductees to be honored are as follows: Jon Cooper, Spectronics Corporation; John Durso, Long Island Federation of Labor; Congressman Peter King, U.S. House of Representatives; Gail Prudenti, Center for Children, Families and the Law at the Maurice A. Deane
School of Law at Hofstra University; Randi Shubin Dresner, Island Harvest; Dr. Bruce Stillman, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory; Sal Ferro, Alure Home Improvements; and Richard Monti, Crest Hollow Country Club. For more information, visit: http://libn.com/2016/10/31/long-island-business-hall-of-fame/
Nondestructive Testing (NDT) is one of the most important yet often overlooked public safety functions, and many tools and instruments are used in this field.
EYE-OPENING FACTS ABOUT THE EYE
VISUAL ACUITY AND NONDESTRUCTIVE TESTING
Did you know?
Nobody is recommending such drastic measures as eye modification surgery for NDT technicians, but to prepare your eyes for NDT inspections, follow these tips:
Now that’s you’ve prepared your eyes for their NDT test work, here’s how to prep your examination sample:
With proper maintenance, your NDT tools—both those in your head and in your workspace— will detect flaws when the fluorescent materials glow brightly under the UV-A beam. See what we just did there?
Spectronics Corporation and ChemPoint.com EMEA BV are announcing the beginning of a strategic partnership for distribution of their SPECTROLINE WATER-GLO®, the company’s premier fluorescent leak detection dye for water/water-glycol based systems. The terms of the agreement grant ChemPoint the exclusive right to distribute and market WATER-GLO in Europe, the Middle-East and Africa.
“The expansion of our MRO portfolio with Spectronics on SPECTROLINE WATER-GLO leak detection dyes is another strong testament to ChemPoint’s capabilities and reach,” said Dennis Schmeits, EMEA Regional Business Director. “We are excited to now also offer these innovative products, coupled with ChemPoint’s tailored services and technical support, to all of our glycol-based heat transfer fluids customers.”
Preventive Maintenance is a proactive equipment and system facilities management strategy.
It operates on cost/benefit premise of creating a calendar of regularly scheduled testing and upkeep.
- Testing and maintenance are performed while equipment and systems are still in good working condition.
This calendar can be based on actual chronological time or seasonality. But it may also be scheduled on equipment usage lifetime hours or unit production integers. The latter two usually being supplied by the manufacturer of equipment and systems.
In some, but not all circumstances, preventive maintenance can be conducted without having to shut down the system. Doing testing and repairs while the equipment is still actively doing its job.
The overriding cost/benefits being:
- Ward off the equipment from breaking down unexpectedly
- Subsequently cost less than making major repairs or even replacements to equipment
- Decrease the likelihood of equipment and systems experiencing profound or even catastrophic failure, which can have a domino effect and cause other production line or system breakdowns
That’s because these force ancillary costs of:
- Production stoppages
- Paying outside repair experts
- Purchasing major equipment/part replacements
- In some instances, paying fines or penalties or lawsuit settlements
- Loss of clients, brand reputation, market share
Any or all of these can alone (or combined) create—in some cases—profound revenue losses.
September 12th - 17th
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m
Wednesday, September 21 - 12:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m
Thursday, September 22 - 12:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m
Tracer Products, the automotive division of Spectronics Corporation, is featured in a Newsday story about millennial employees and how they are changing financial compensation in the workforce. Spectronics president Jon Cooper (center) highlights the company’s new employee compensation program. Cooper says the change is aimed-in part-at attracting and keeping millenial workers.
“The decision to move away from our old (annual compensation) model came with the change in our workforce coinciding with the hiring of more millennials,” says Cooper. “We’re hoping that if we provide more benefits such as merit-based salary increases and performance-based bonuses, we’ll lead the market, attract the right talent, and give our employees the opportunity to grow within our company.”
Millennial Workforce Statistics
- The Average tenure for Millennials is 2 years (compared to 5 years for Gen X and 7 years for Baby Boomers.) [Pay Scale / Millennial Branding]
- It costs an average of $24,000 to replace each Millennial employee. [Microsoft / Experience Inc]
- By 2025, 3 out of every 4 workers globally will be Millennials. [Time]
Aerochemicals is a global alliance of independent specialists in industrial chemicals for the aerospace industry and is committed to providing products and technical support to multinational customers with global needs. The five founding members are Contec, MagChem, PSA, Sherwin BabbCo, and Socomore.
Spectronics joins the dynamism of the alliance as the sole manufacturer of compliant LED UV-A inspection lamps. The Spectroline® brand is a world leader in NDT equipment, radiometers, photometers, UV-A lamps, and accessories. Spectroline® UV lamps and radiometers are widely used in Magnetic Particle Testing (MPT) and Liquid Penetrant Inspections (LPI), to verify the structural integrity of military and commercial aircraft. (Learn more here: http://www.aerochemicals.com/spectronics-corporation/)
The objective of joining the alliance is to work with other partners to improve the safety of aerospace, and to better serve the market. With this alliance, our OEM customers will obtain a guarantee that the partners with whom they develop products and technologies will have the capacity to ensure worldwide distribution to airlines and MRO. For more information, email email@example.com.
Spectroline’s new QUADRAN™ 365 NDT lamp (QDR-365SC) feature four ultra-hi-flux UV-A LEDs plus a convenient white light LED to quickly switch between fluorescent inspection and flaw location. For increased flexibility, it features a unique dual, high/low white light output control. The lamp is fully compliant with the ASTM E3022 Standard for LED UV-A lamps.
The QUADRAN’s broad-beam configuration produces an extremely wide coverage area, making it ideal for both hand-held and in-line applications. Long-lasting UV-A lenses reduce the rate of solarization. The lamp features a nominal steady-state UV-A intensity of 3,700 μW/cm2 at 15 inches (38 cm). It also has a large 6 inch (15.2 cm) diameter coverage area at 15 inches (38 cm), with a minimum UV-A intensity of 1,000 μW/cm2. It’s low visible light emission is less than 0.5 foot-candle (5 lux).
QUADRAN’s faceplate with integral blacklight filters reduces output of wavelengths longer than 400 nm. While the white light LED allow for scanning of surface flaws or illuminating dark work spaces. Built-in fans keep the LEDs cool to maintain optimum light output during extended use. The QUADRAN features multi-LED, broad-beam UV-A (365 nm) inspection lamps. It is specifically designed to meet ASTM UV-A intensity and wavelength specifications for LPT and MPT.
There’s no trigger finger fatigue with the QUADRAN. It stays on, working, until you’re done working. That’s because switching operation modes is as simple as toggling the rear-mounted, easy-use, three-way rocker switch (white light/off/UV). A built in lamp handle pin receptacle allows for easy attachment of various Spectroline® mounting accessories for in-line inspection applications (accessories sold separately).
A Certificate of Conformance for ASTM E3022 standard for emission characteristics and requirements for LED UV-A lamps is supplied with each lamp.
Choose between the standard 8 foot cord (2.4 m) or the extra-long 20 foot (6.1 m) heavy-duty power cord that comes with an AC plug and rubber boot. You can also choose between the optional industrial power supply or in-line power supply with cord sets (sold separately). All power supply and cord sets are available in 120V, 230V, 240V and 100V models. Each lamp comes with UV-absorbing spectacles and is packed in a convenient, lightweight, soft carrying case.
Like other technologies that have become indispensable—mobile electronic devices and X-ray imaging among them—the practical application of UV technology is not totally void of exposure risks. But in an increasingly dangerous world, the need for and efficacy of these tools far outweighs their potential hazards. And with common sense precautions, the exposure to latent threats can effectively be mitigated.
UV technology allows us to see a huge array of phenomena not perceptible to the naked eye. It unlocks access to and management of potentially dangerous issues that were previously hidden and only known when they reached worsened conditions, or after time consuming, inefficient and often unreliable traditional inspection techniques.
In the case of infrastructure, ultraviolet light technology has massive implications with nondestructive testing applications.
The D+ to B in NDT:
Every four years, the American Society of Civil Engineers’ (ASE) Report Card for America’s Infrastructure assigns letter grades based on the physical condition of and needed investments to improve the nation’s infrastructure systems. In 2013, America’s GPA rose to a still disconcerting D+ with a recommendation that $3.6 TRILLION be invested by 2020 in order to, “maintain a state of good repair. [sic] That is, approximately what amount of investment is needed to get to a grade of B.” (Engineers, n.d.)
The need for proper maintenance of and investment in infrastructure is not just an issue of national pride. Catastrophic failures within any of these systems can—and is too many instances actually have—caused numerous casualties, massive property damage and resulted in crippling liabilities for the municipalities and the private companies who construct and maintain them.
A U.S. Department of Justice Report found that plaintiffs won nearly a third of all product liability lawsuits. Of successful civil suits, a third of those plaintiffs were awarded punitive damages on top of compensatory damages. Specifically, punitive damages were reserved in part for, “civil claims in which the defendant’s conduct was considered grossly negligent”.
13% of cases with punitive awards had damages of $1 million or more.
Just last July (2015), British Petroleum finally ended litigation stemming from the Deep Water Horizon oil spill by agreeing to pay about $18.7 billion in damages for water pollution caused by the spill, settling claims with the U.S. government and Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Texas and Florida.
Regular inspection schedules utilizing Nondestructive (NDT) testing kits offer far reaching, huge cost savings because of their ability to detect defects onsite and in real time for pennies on the dollar.
Risks: Macro vs. Micro
Understanding the risks that nondestructive testing can mitigate on the macro level provides a framework for getting a better handle on safely working with the technology.
When most people think of ultraviolet light they also of think of radiation. The term “radiation” is defined as the “emission or transmission of energy in the form of waves or particles.” Light, radio waves, wireless signals and countless other natural and man-made energy sources fall along the electromagnetic spectrum (pictured) and constitute some form of radiation, each with its own uses and potential hazards.
Lower-energy waves are generally the most harmless and are used for radio and television transmissions, while higher energy x-rays and gamma rays pose the greatest safety risks–such high-energy radiation is associated with the fears many people associate with all radiation. Infrared radiation, commonly known as heat, is the most prevalent component in sunlight, followed by visible light, and then ultraviolet light.
The UV-A (365 nm) wavelength used in NDT applications falls just above the upper limit of what the human eye can detect, and when shone on a suitably reflective material can reflect back visible light, making UV-A quite useful in seeing what the eye alone cannot.
This questionnaire is actually a trick question.
Because the safety protocols associated with using UV technology are very similar to those issued for a being outside in the sun for prolonged periods.
Simply stepping outdoors leads to some exposure to UV-A radiation, and just as sunscreen is advised for a trip to the beach or other strong exposure to sunlight, occupational exposure to ultraviolet light sources warrants simple and common sense safety precautions.
Excessive exposure to UV-A radiation can potentially lead to skin cancer, so when performing NDT inspections on a regular basis, measures to shield the skin from reflected UV light are also prudent, most notably wearing long sleeves and covering as much of the skin as possible when working with the UV lamp. Sunscreen can also be used for the face and other parts of the body difficult to shield with clothing, though it’s important to select one designed to block UV-A rays to optimize occupational safety.
In NDT applications, the most significant risk factor associated with exposure to UV-A radiation is to the eyes, as prolonged, unprotected exposure is associated with cataracts. Not looking directly into a UV light source is one important precaution, though of greater concern for occupational exposure is reflected UV light.Even if you never look directly into the bulb, without eye protection, reflected UV light will pass through the eye where it can possibly cause harm.
There is no formal occupational exposure limit for UV-A radiation, though guidelines set by the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) are generally used as informal exposure limits. The guidelines are for UNPROTECTED exposure and quite scientific, and with proper eye and skin protection shouldn’t come into play. The use of UV-absorbing glasses, often provided with NDT inspection lamps, prevents these reflected rays from reaching the sensitive tissue of the eyes, and is the most important safety precaution to take into consideration when working with UV lamps.
As the risk of damage to the eyes can begin with exposure as short as 16 minutes, possibly less in the case of a high-intensity source, this highlights the need for eye protection during occupational use of UV-A inspection lamps. The use of proper protective eyewear, combined with the right clothing and sunscreen (where applicable) renders UV-A fully safe for routine inspection, allowing the power of UV technology to be freely and safely used in a diverse range of NDT applications.
Even the safest of tools and technologies have protocols recommended for their operation. Risk assessment is something we do consciously and sometimes without even realizing it. Getting all the facts and taking prudent precautions based upon them is the best way to reduce your exposure to any of the potential hazards you encounter. When it comes to the use of UV nondestructive testing technology, the benefits to society and the bottom line far out-weigh the small risks that can successfully be ameliorated when you know what they are and take the proper precautions.
Spectronics Corporation President Jon Cooper (photo on right) was a panelist on a "Charting the Course" regional business seminar designed to examine the relationship between government and business. The round table was held at the Selden campus of Suffolk County Community College. Concurrent to his responsibilities helming Spectronics, Cooper was a Suffolk County legislator from 2000 to 2011.
More than 100 representatives from Long Island's diverse economic and community development fields, attended the conference which included other high-level stakeholders in the business, government and the non-profit sectors. Combined, Suffolk County and Nassau County have a population larger than Maine, West Virginia and 11 other states.
Conferees dialogued intensely with panelists on infrastructure, manufacturing, export and tourism issues. Breakout sessions dove even deeper into topics that included navigating the permit process and small business financing.
"As someone with experience in both the private sector and public service, I can't over emphasize how important it is that government and business respect the profound impact they have on one another...and as a result...the public at large," says Cooper. "Whether we serve them as citizens or customers, the long-term prosperity of not only Long Island—but America—requires that the public and private sectors work together in ways that are transparent and beneficial to people."
Spectronics Corporation has joined the board of the Overseas Automotive Council (OAC) of the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA). Spectronics is the parent company of Tracer Products which has been at the forefront of automotive leak detection technology for more than half a century. The AASA is a recognized industry change agent – promoting a collaborative environment, providing a forum to address issues and serving as a valued resource for members.
The OAC is one of the oldest and most unique organizations in the global automotive aftermarket. Since 1923 the OAC has strived to be the premier international community for all North American manufacturers and exporters, all international importers, distributors and agents who participate in the aftermarket. It provides a forum for members to share ideas, address common concerns and solve mutual problems. The OAC’s Mission is to promote the sale of aftermarket products and services exported from North America.
Serving on the council for Spectronics Corporation will be Daniel Tristan (left). Tristan was appointed Spectronics’ International Sales Manager for the Latin America and Asia-Pacific regions in 2015. He has twenty years’ experience in the automotive and automotive aftermarket business lines.
“As Spectronics continues to expand the strength of its global brands, membership in the OAC will help us reach millions of new consumers whom we want to educate about the benefit of preventive maintenance plans and tools,” says Tristan. “I’m thrilled to serve on this board and work with my new colleagues to promote the interests of the automotive aftermarket sector all over the world.”
June is National Safety Month.
Did you know that according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2014 (the lastest year data is avilable) there were nearly 3 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses reported by private industry employers. Of those, a whopping 95.1%...or 2.8 million of these instances...were workplace occuring injuries.
A 2012 article in constructionequipment.com, “People who work on mobile hydraulic systems are at risk on two fronts—first, when investigating leaks, especially when the leaks are not readily visible, and then when opening a system to make repairs.”
But just how serious can these injuries really be?
“We never say ‘always,’ but we typically consider injection injuries a surgical emergency,” offers Douglas Carlan, M.D. an orthopedic surgeon from St. Petersburg FL who was consulted in the constructionequipment.com story. “This is something we take immediately to the operating room to relieve the pressure…and to remove as much of the injectate as possible.”
When added to the reservoirs of hydraulic machinery, Spectroline's FluidSafe™ Additive aids in the detection and surgical removal of hydraulic fluid in the event of an accidental fluid injection that penetrates the skin.
When added to the reservoirs of hydraulic machinery, Spectroline's FluidSafe™ Additive aids in the detection and surgical removal of hydraulic fluid in the event of an accidental fluid injection that penetrates the skin.
That’s because when viewed under the SafetyBlu lamp’s high-intensity blue light, the additive’s bright green fluorescent glow pinpoints the injection track quickly and accurately.
This makes it easy for medical personnel to confirm whether a penetration actually occurred, and if so, to precisely determine the extent of the injury. This not only allows triage of cases not requiring surgery, but also helps pinpoint the exact location of hydraulic fluid under the skin, assisting in limiting soft tissue dissection required during surgery. The green fluorescent response will remain visible in the tissue for at least 24 hours, with no ill effects to the human body.
Another benefit of FluidSafe is that it helps detect leaks in fluid power system hoses, fittings, seals and other components. This decreases the consumption of hydraulic fluid, reduces the potential for equipment breakdowns, minimizes environmental damage, and helps prevent fluid release incidents. As a result, FluidSafe is ideal for preventive maintenance programs.
To find out more about FluidSafe can make every month of the year your worksite's safest month of the year, check out our Hazards of High Pressure Fluid Injections White Paper.
The Spectroline® TRITAN 365 (TRI-365SBLC) inspection lamp is now tested to comply with the ASTM E3022 Standard (as well as already being certified to meet Rolls-Royce RRES 90061 Requirements).
According to ASTM International, this standard measures emission characteristics of ultraviolet lamps, which are key tools for important safety and quality testing in a variety of industries.
Lamps covered by the practice (E3022, Practice for Measurement of Emission Characteristics of UV-A Lamps Used in Fluorescent Penetrant and Magnetic Particle Testing) are used for production and in-service inspections of bridges, buildings, aircraft, auto components, and more.
According to the ASTM's John Brausch, such inspections are common and critical processes that ensure the integrity of infrastructure, products and parts around the world.
“UV-A lamps play a key role in these inspections, enhancing the visibility of fluorescing contrast pigments and dyes that have been trapped by damage or material flaws,” says Brausch. The introduction of light-emitting diode (LED) technologies led to the development of the new standard.
The standard defines methods for measuring emission characteristics of UV-A lamps and defines the minimum performance requirements for UV-A lamps used in nondestructive testing applications. Lamp manufacturers will use it to ensure their products meet such requirements for ultraviolet irradiance, emission characteristics and projected beam profile.
The TRITAN 365 features three ultra-hi-flux UV-A LEDs for NDT inspection, plus a white light LED with an intensity of 400 foot-candles (4,306 lux) to illuminate dark work areas. The lamp produces a nominal steady-state UV-A intensity of less than 5,000 µW/cm2 at 15 inches (38 cm) and a large 4 inch (10 cm) diameter coverage area at 15 inches (38 cm), with a minimum UV-A intensity of 2,500 µW/cm2.