A Commitment to Customers … and Community
In today’s world, the GEO commitment to safety and quality starts at home, in the towns where its employees live and extends globally to customers around the world. Solving problems and creating solutions that benefit our customers.
GEO invites you to take a look at these short stories on topics ranging from innovative customer solutions to examples of good community relations.
Serviced out of GEO’s Deer Park facility, GEO’s technical team has recently worked with a local municipality that has found GEO’s water purification methods to be beneficial in quality and cost. It starts with a surface water treatment plant, which historically ran using aluminum sulfate as the primary coagulant. This facility has faced challenges during certain times of the year such as rain events, temperature changes and high water flows. GEO recommended that the municipal water operation change to a polyaluminum chloride formula to improve plant performance and reduce overall water treatment costs. By formulating a product specific to the facilities raw water parameters, the use of polyaluminum chloride, produced at GEO’s Deer Park production facility, has shown a reduction in dosage, less residuals produced, a significantly lower caustic usage and reduced overall treatment costs.
GEO’s recommended use of polyaluminum chloride immediately showed positive results with a lower dosage that exceeded settling requirements. The polyaluminum chloride dose was reduced as time went on with data further proving there was an increase in plant performance. Overall permeability increased compared to the former aluminum sulfate program. Data showed that there was a 70% reduction in coagulant used at the plant.
• Coagulants produce a metal salt that adds to the sludge created from the coagulation process. Performance data indicates that the lower doses experienced will reduce metal salt generated (sludge) by 30% - 40%. The facility also noticed that the handling of the sludge was easier and lighter to pump and remove.
• Polyaluminum chloride consumes less alkalinity than alum. Therefore, the demand for post PH adjustment is less on a polyaluminum chloride treatment program. During certain raw water conditions the facility was able to completely shut off the post PH adjustment. Other times a minimal PH adjustment was required. The net result was that caustic usage was reduced by an astounding 80% - 100%.
• The facility was able to reduce overall treatment costs by 25%.
The lower dose and improved turbidities proved to demonstrate longer filter runs for the facility. The plant was able to run the filters longer before each backwash or cleaning.
70% reduction in coagulant pounds used per day.
30%-40% reduction in sludge disposal.
80%-100% caustic reduction dependent on raw water parameters.
25% reduction in treatment cost per year.
Longer filter runs and related cost savings.
Additional cost savings such as a reduction of electrical and water costs.
Consider this: the United States consumes 19.2 million barrels of oil each day and it produces about half, or 9.8 million barrels, of that oil while the rest is imported. Now, consider this: there could be 17 billion barrels of U.S. produced oil available sooner than we think – much of it located in a handful of shale oil fields like the Bakken Basin in North Dakota. These oil fields lie deep under the earth’s surface, some 10,000 feet underground. Drilling here is more art than science. One large problem is extending the life of the drill and the drill bit when deep underground. Making drilling more efficient to be able to more safely reach the immense amount of oil under surface can be done with GEO lubricants, i.e. GEOlube SCO. The lubricant provides lubricity, reducing drag and torque, and thus, extending the life of the drill bit and saving time having to replace it. Right now, GEOlube is used primarily to support more than 200 oil rigs in this north central region of the United States. However, the product – sold in drums and easily truckable pails for immediate use by oil field operators – has immense potential and cost savings to help the American oil boom as the industry improves its efficiencies and the United States reduces its dependency on foreign oil. Solutions. That is our specialty.
Manufacturers of precision metal components, such as those used in the automotive or aircraft industries, often rely on a casting process known as “investment” or “wax process” casting. This is particularly useful for precision casting of high melting point metals which cannot be cast in plastic or metal molds. The investment casting process involves the injection of a wax compound into a melt die to create a wax pattern. The wax pattern is then coated in a ceramic material, which is then cured. Finally, the wax is melted and removed to create a hollow ceramic mold.
The wax compounds used in this process must be carefully formulated to ensure that they maintain their dimensional stability and do not expand and contract during the various heating and cooling steps involved in the preparation of the mold. Bis-phenol A (BPA) is commonly used as an additive to help in this process, but there are significant health and safety concerns associated with its use as it is classified by the Environmental Protection Agency as an inventory item under the Toxic Substance Control Act (section 8).
GEO’s TRIMET® TME can be used as a safer alternative to BPA in investment casting applications. It has very similar thermal and physical properties to BPA, but is non toxic, and as such is not an EPA regulated material. Solutions. That is our specialty.
An affordable solution to improve the equipment cleaning processes compared to other above ground cleaning chemicals currently being used in the Oilpatch. As industry production continues, a need to economically minimize waste and residual generated by drilling/completion processes becomes ever more important. One of the challenges in E&P is the need for quick and effective, equipment cleaning agents.
Wearers of contact lenses may not realize it, but their lenses usually display a subtle blue-colored tint. This is not a feature intended to enhance the color of the wearer’s eyes.
The light blue tint is there to make the lenses easier to see and handle when being fitted, and is an essential component of lens design. Incorporating this “handling tint” into the lens creates challenges for the lens manufacturer, involving additional manufacturing steps that not only add cost, but also significantly increase the risk of mechanical damage to the lens during the tinting process. GEO’s patented “Bisomer IMT in monomer tinting system” has been specifically designed to overcome these problems. It comprises a very simple to use, high-purity monomer dye, which co-polymerizes with the other monomers in the formulation, forming a blue-tinted polymer. As such, it can be easily incorporated into typical lens manufacturing processes. The elimination of additional production steps and improvement in yields offer lens manufacturers significant cost savings. GEO’s Bisomer IMT in monomer tinting system is FDA registered, exempt from certification, carries no restrictions on its usage and is suitable for both conventional and silicone hydrogel contact lenses. It is available as a monomer dye, or in a tailor-made, ready to use monomer blend. Solutions. That is our specialty.
Paper mills use extremely large quantities of water. Today, there are 380 paper mills dotting the American landscape. In 2012, they supplied about 82 million tons of paper and pulp production (Source: Boston Globe, February 9, 2014). The handheld device generation has reduced the need for newsprint, but America’s paper mills continue to be highly relevant to the economy, making other trade and consumer products, from corrugate to office paper to paper napkins and plates. Higher efficiencies for greater profitability are required of every successful operation to combat competition from China and to exceed the environmental controls that are state and federally regulated.
Recently, GEO representatives from the company’s Water Treatment Chemicals Division visited a paper mill in the southeast and sought to optimize its influent water system, which operated using 30 million gallons of H2O every day. GEO conducted a mix energy and equipment optimization study of the water plant to model the current system for jar testing. The study revealed:
1) The improper operation of the streaming current detector (SCD) caused wide readings and therefore much higher coagulant doses than necessary.
2) The mix energy in the current plant test was incorrect leading to improper test results and conclusions.
3) The polymer feed was too low causing higher coagulant doses.
4) The system was not being run optimally.
GEO Specialty Chemicals sought to conduct a trial which would correct the above issues and demonstrate how the plant could vastly improve its operation. The mill granted the trial and the results proved that:
1) lower coagulant doses were possible with a product change;
2) an increased polymer dosage would supply higher quality water than currently being supplied to the mill resulting in longer filter runs;
3) minor equipment changes would allow for higher quality water to be produced at the mill.
The trial, conducted by GEO’s Water Treatment Chemicals team in collaboration with mill operators, optimized this paper mill’s water system in the following ways:
1) a 25 percent turbidity improvement and lengthening of filter runs;
2) a one-time $650,000 financial improvement to operations;
3) significant supply chain improvement;
Solutions. That is our specialty.
In a world that needs more and better construction materials, wallboard is the backbone of the industry. In general, construction materials that are more efficient to produce, lighter to load, cheaper and easier to ship, and stronger than their predecessors are in demand.
Solvent based polyurethanes have been the work horse technology for the coating industry for the past 50 years. As awareness of the potential health hazards and impact on the environment has grown, pressure from environmental regulatory agencies and consumer protection groups to reduce the use of solvents has increased. As a result, water-based polyurethane dispersions (PUDs) have seen significant growth over the last decade, but this technology is not yet completely free of hazardous solvents.
By reducing the weight of wallboard, production, shipping and handling costs drop dramatically for this essential material used in construction worldwide. With new technology not yet developed, the key challenges were to reduce the amount of water and the amount of gypsum in the wallboard.