Hach Homeland Security division wins EPA verification for monitoring system

Hach Homeland Security Technologies division announced Feb. 9 that its Event Monitor Trigger System (EMTS), Water Distribution Monitoring Panel (WDMP) and astroTOC Total Organic Carbon Analyzer have received Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) from the EPA for continuous multi-parameter water monitoring in distribution systems by a water distribution monitoring system...

Feb 9th, 2006

LOVELAND, CO, Feb. 9, 2006 -- Hach Homeland Security Technologies Division announced today their Event Monitor™ Trigger System(EMTS), Water Distribution Monitoring Panel (WDMP) andastroTOC™ Total Organic Carbon Analyzer have received Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) from the EPA for continuous multi-parameter water monitoring in distribution systems by a water distribution monitoring system.

The Event Monitor, WDMP, and astroTOC Analyzer are the three components of Hach's unique and innovative water distribution monitoring system with the dual-benefit ability to detect, alert and classify more than 80 deadly contaminants as well as detect, alert, classify and learn real-world events. The new technology is considered a break-through in water distribution monitoring, according to industry experts.

The Advanced Monitoring Systems (AMS) Center, operated by the EPA's National Exposure Research Laboratory and its verification organization partner Battelle, evaluated the EMTS's ability to consistently detect and alert when a contaminant was injected into a pipe of flowing drinking water and accurately classify what contaminant had been injected. The Event Monitor detected and alerted on 100% of all contaminants injected into the system and correctly classified 85%.

The AMS also evaluated the performance of the WDMP and astroTOC Analyzer to continuously measure total chlorine, turbidity, temperature, conductivity, pH and total organic carbon (TOC) in drinking water in terms of four categories: 1) Accuracy, 2) Response to injected contaminants, 3) Inter-unit reproducibility, 4) Ease of use and data acquisition.

In nine 4-hour tests, WDMP and astroTOC Analyzer measurements were compared with reference samples taken in water conditions with pH and temperature variations. The majority of the six water quality parameters had standard deviations below 10% of the average result. The WDMP and astroTOC Analyzer detected a change in water quality parameters when 6-10 parts per million of a contaminant was injected into the water. Measurements from two identical WDMP units were compared throughout the verification (approximately 138 times.) The majority of comparisons were within 6% of unity indicating the results were similar and repeatable. System maintenance and operation reports from a 52-day Extended Deployment assessment indicate the Event Monitor, WDMP and astroTOC Analyzer performed efficiently and had minimal maintenance requirements. Sensor data was facilitated through the Event Monitor to a SCADA system or downloaded to a USB memory device.

"We are excited to be at the forefront of water distribution monitoring technology," said Dr. Jeff Throckmorton, president of Hach's Homeland Security Technologies division. "Our system is the only technology the EPA has verified that can detect, alert, and classify deadly contaminants in a city's drinking water. We anticipate this innovative technology will revolutionize the way municipalities not only manage water quality in their distribution systems, but ensure their drinking water is safe from intentional contamination."

The Event Monitor integrates the multiple sensor outputs from the WDMP and astroTOC Analyzer. Every 60 seconds the system applies a patented algorithm to the sensor measurements, calculating a site's water quality baseline. The system alarms when the trigger signal exceeds a preset threshold, indicating an "event." The system is equipped with a plant event library that learns the signature of operational events after deployment. It can also be equipped with an agent library containing profiles of more than 80 deadly contaminants. If an event occurs and its signature cannot be found in the agent library, the plant event library is searched for a match. If no match is found, the signature is stored for future reference in case the event recurs. Over time, operators can label plant event profiles by name and severity level, allowing recognition of previous events, and decreasing the frequency of unknown alarms.

Unlike traditional monitoring systems, the Event Monitor will trigger on excursions that are not yet in either the agent library or plant library. This capability enables the system to alert an operator to unknown agents, contamination and operational events never previously encountered.

The Event Monitor Trigger System received the R&D100 Award for one of the 100 most technologically significant new products of 2005 by R&D Magazine.

For more information:
• Download: EPA ETV Letter of Verification (PDF:294KB)
• Download: Summary/Explanation of ETV Report (PDF:49KB)
• New window: Battelle.org website for complete ETV Verification Report.
Hach Water Distribution Monitoring Panel
WDM AstroTOC UV Total Organic Carbon Analyzer
WDM Event Monitor Trigger System

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency supports the Environmental Technology Verification Program (www.epa.gov/etv/) to facilitate the deployment of innovative environmental technologies through performance verification and dissemination of information. The goal of the ETV program is to further environmental protection by accelerating the acceptance and use of improved and cost-effective technologies.

Hach Homeland Security Technologies, a unit of the Hach Company (www.hach.com), focuses on the development of innovative and breakthrough technologies that can be used to detect contamination events and terrorist activity, and that improve general operational control in both water and air.

Also see: "EPA recommends interim approval of LDO method" -- Recommendation for interim approval of ASTM International Standard Test Method D888-05 (ATP Case No. N05-0046)...

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