Fumehood maker shows rivals how to go green

By Huw Kidwell

- Last updated on GMT

A new user and environmentally-friendly fume hood claimed to cut
emissions as well as operating and energy costs has been launched
at Pittcon 2008.

The new technology is the brainchild of the Erlab Group, which has been at the forefront of fume hood technology for the past 40 years. The new offering has several advantages and allows easy installation, even retrofitting, without problems. Erlab claims that the new Greenfume hood can reduce operating costs by 70 per cent and energy costs by 96 per cent, in comparison with conventional fume hoods, while still maintaining the regulation flow velocity of 100 fpm. On average the unit uses only around 3,737 Kwh per year, according to the company. The fume hood uses an activated carbon filter, called Neutrodine, which can handle acids, solvents and bases and can remove 99.9 per cent of chemicals used in the laboratory. The hood can also be configured via a modular filter system to handle powders and particles and is suitable for use in cleanrooms, when used with double HEPA filters and Neutrodine. Duct-free​ But one of the greatest advantages is that it requires no duct work connection to the outside of the building and no HVAC system or make-up air. The hood is completely self contained and as such can be installed anywhere in the laboratory without restriction. The unit is available in the full range of standard sizes from 3ft to 8ft wide and is controlled by a fully integrated electronic system (onboard computer) supported by Microsoft communications technology for management. This system is called gGuard and can provide users (any user must have an access card to use a fume hood) and administrators with a range of information and status updates on condition of the filter (sensors detect filter saturation and suggest when it requires changing), filter type, face velocity, sash position, energy saving data, motor speed and the condition of the laboratory ambient air. Erlab can even monitor the fume hood via the internet and provide maintenance and monitoring services via a service called gGuardOnline. Stephane Guerpin, the sales manager for Europe, commented at the show: "This has got to be one of the highlights of Pittcon... The green part comes from the fact that there are absolutely no emissions from the laboratory via the fume hood and the running costs are significantly less than would be traditionally expected." "Even the Neutrodine filter disposal is carefully controlled so that there are no carbon emissions... the system has sophisticated monitoring and control systems which allow the ultimate in flexibility

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