Micro-Discharge Based Multi-Metal Emissions Monitoring System

EPA Contract Number: EPD05059
Title: Micro-Discharge Based Multi-Metal Emissions Monitoring System
Investigators: Herring, Cy
Small Business: Caviton Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Phase: II
Project Period: April 1, 2005 through June 30, 2006
Project Amount: $225,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase II (2005) Recipients Lists
Research Category: SBIR - Air Pollution , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , Air Quality and Air Toxics


Caviton, Inc., developed a novel technique for the continuous monitoring of trace metals emissions. This technique is based on a microdischarge light, which is collected by a spectrometer and analyzed. All metals tested to date can be detected, and the focus of this Phase II research project is to develop a sampling system, carry out laboratory tests, and perform field tests of sampling and analysis. Finally, an instrument design will be completed, which will detail the final form of the instrument. This system will consist of a collection tube, a filter, a sample collection surface that can be heated to release the sample, and a microdischarge device with related analysis equipment. The entire instrument will have no moving parts and will be made from corrosion-resistant materials. To date, detectors have been operated at temperatures higher than 1,000°C with no signs of degradation. Caviton, Inc., will consult with an experienced stack tester to provide side-by-side comparisons to current equipment. This consultant also will aid in the final instrument design to ensure ease of use and real-world functionality. Caviton, Inc., intends to produce a rugged, sensitive, and cost-effective solution to multiple metals monitoring that will be useful for surveys and for continuous emissions monitoring in harsh environments such as smoke stacks, burners, boilers, and incinerators. The company also will consult with a business development and marketing expert with whom it has had a long-standing relationship to identify the proper partners for licensing and producing the resulting instrument.

Supplemental Keywords:

small business, SBIR, monitoring, trace metals, emissions, microdischarge light, spectrometer, smoke stacks, boilers, incinerators, continuous emissions monitoring, RFA, Scientific Discipline, Air, Ecosystem Protection/Environmental Exposure & Risk, particulate matter, Air Quality, Environmental Chemistry, Monitoring/Modeling, Analytical Chemistry, Environmental Monitoring, Engineering, Chemistry, & Physics, particle size, monitoring, chemical characteristics, human health effects, aerosol particles, air quality models, HAPS, gas chromatography, air quality model, air sampling, ambient emissions, chemical detection techniques, emissions, metal speciation, particulate matter mass, particle sampler, human exposure, multimetal emissions, continuous emissions monitoring, arsenic speciation, spark induced breakdown spectroscopy, aerosol analyzers

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report

  • SBIR Phase I:

    Microdischarge-Based Multimetal Emission Monitoring System  | Final Report