Identifying sustainable alternative cleaning methods for chemical use
NYSP2I gives New York State manufacturers the insights and resources they need to become sustainable through cost-effective solutions. Our goal is to provide practical, step-by-step guidance to our clients as they transition to sustainable manufacturing.
“NYSP2I was instrumental in identifying more environmentally friendly solutions to our cleaning process. As an independent source, NYSP2I evaluates all options and seeks what is best for your company. The members of the team were a pleasure to work with and we highly recommend their services.”
Rochester Steel Treating Works offers a range of heat treating services to companies for their production parts or tooling. They maintain a number of industrial furnaces and ovens, each with different temperature and atmosphere capabilities to provide a diverse range of heat treating services to customers. Rochester Steel Treating Works relies on trichloroethylene (TCE) vapor degreasing to clean metal parts in preparation for heat-treating or post oil quenching. Rochester Steel Treating Works spends approximately $111,000 per year on purchasing, disposal, and management of this TCE chemical and sludge. Rochester Steel Treating Works came to NYSP2I for assistance in identifying sustainable alternative methods to vapor degreasing that eliminates the use of this chemical.
NYSP2I evaluated TCE chemical alternatives and aqueous cleaning methods vacuum cycle nucleation (VCN) and ultrasonics for potential uses.
The work performed by NYSP2I led to key findings that can support Rochester Steel Works with identifying an alternative technology to replace TCE.
- Investing in ultrasonic or VCN systems can potentially reduce cleaning operating costs by 85-87%.
- Kyzen Metalnox M6314, an oil-splitting aqueous cleaner with rust inhibitors, proved to be an effective cleaner when used in either VCN or ultrasonics.
- In some cases, parts may require a drying step after cleaning to prevent rust formation.
- After drying, visual inspection indicated no chemical residue issues after heating parts at 450° Fahrenheit for ten minutes.