Aerospace Manufacturing Installs Oil Mist Collection System to Improve Workplace Safety
October 4, 2022
When the management team at Aerospace Manufacturing Corporation wanted to create a safer manufacturing facility for their employees, they turned to Clean Air Company. Aerospace, a leader in manufacturing precision aviation products for valued customers like Lockheed Martin, Sikorsky Aircraft, Bombardier and NASA, recognized the health threats petroleum-based coolants used during their manufacturing operations posed to metal workers in their facility.
Oil mist generated by petroleum-based lubricants and coolants is a hazardous byproduct of manufacturing throughout the metalworking industry. In order to reduce friction and heat generated when metal products are being cut or machined, a metalworker typically sprays coolant on the metal during the manufacturing process. In addition to reducing friction and keeping the metal part cool, the coolant facilitates a smoother, more precise cut. However, petroleum-based lubricants turn into vapor, or mist, when heated, and exposure to oil mist through skin exposure or inhalation is a serious health hazard. Breathing oil mist can lead to bronchitis, lung fibrosis, bronchial asthma, rhinitis, or even lung cancer. Due to the severe health hazards that oil mist poses, OSHA has established an exposure threshold limit of 5mg/m3. In order to comply with the oil mist exposure limit, it’s recommended that every metalworking facility establishes a metalworking fluid system management program.
The Solution: Exceeding Regulatory Standards
To address all of Aerospace Manufacturing’s concerns about oil mist in the workplace and provide the aviation product manufacturer with a host of benefits, Clean Air Company equipped their facility with a customized oil mist recovery system that provides source capture at each of the 16 lathes in operation. The engineered solution is compliant with regulatory standards and meets or exceeds all of the client’s requirements and expectations, including:
- Reducing the liability associated with human exposure
- Reducing equipment maintenance costs
- Extending the motor life of manufacturing equipment
- Improving the efficiency of Aerospace’s existing HVAC system by preventing oil mist from collecting inside of the HVAC equipment
- Reducing employee absenteeism caused by work-related illness
- Improving employee morale by providing a safe and comfortable work environment
- Improving employee safety through the elimination of slippery surfaces
This project’s scope included designing a system to generate 11,000 CFM airflow using 16 ceiling-mounted fume extraction arms, along with a watertight duct system to convey the vapor to the mist collector outside the building. Clean Air Company mounted Plymovent fume extraction arms within the working vicinity of all of the lathes and centerless grinders in Aerospace’s manufacturing facility. The arms provide 360-degree rotational ability and maximum flexibility for positioning the hood to collect contaminates where they are generated. The Filter-1 mist collector comprises a Chevron mist impinger and high-efficiency filters, which were installed in the facility for nearly 18 months before requiring service. The hinged and gasketed doors of the oil mist collector allow easy access to all filters for quick and easy filter replacement. A gasketed pipe duct system, manufactured by US Duct, is designed with mechanically sealed seams, making it completely leak-proof, and a heavy-gauge, all-welded cabinet and sloped drain pan permit the collection of oil mist as it drains out.
Most importantly, Aerospace Manufacturing is pleased with the oil mist recovery system and its installation. Aerospace employees work in a much cleaner, code-compliant environment and have better morale and an appreciation for the management team. For more than 35 years, Clean Air Company has been recognized by companies in various industries for providing competitively priced, energy-efficient mist collection systems.
If you need a properly engineered mist collection system that will improve workplace safety, reduce employee absenteeism, help your company comply with OSHA regulations, and increase workplace productivity, allow Clean Air Company to earn your business as we have from many Fortune 500 companies since 1976.