Can I adjust the alarm setpoint without using TrakPro™ software?
No. TrakPro™ software version 3.1 or higher is required to control the alarm and analog output functions. The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is shipped from the factory with the alarm setpoint at 0.100 mg/m³ and with the alarm function turned "off".
Can I change the calibration constant to correspond to a different aerosol such as coal dust or oil mist?
Yes. Factory calibration to the standard ISO Test Dust is assigned a calibration constant of 1.00. You may change the calibration constant using the procedure outlined in the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor manual. Factory calibration can be restored by resetting the calibration to 1.00.
Can I leave the Environmental Enclosure out in the rain?
Yes. The case is weather resistant. It can tolerate all weather conditions. It should not be placed in direct contact with the ground.
Can I measure respirable aerosol mass concentration with the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
Yes. The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is supplied with a 10 millimeter Nylon Dorr-Oliver Cyclone which provides a particle size cut-off at 4 microns (internationally accepted as the 50% cut-off size for respirable aerosol mass).
Can I substitute different tubing to connect the Enclosure's aerosol inlet to the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor inlet?
Using alternate tubing is not recommended. The tubing provided with the Enclosure is special electrically conductive tubing designed to minimize particle transport losses. Use of tubing made from other materials may result in low readings. The Environmental Enclosure Accessory Kit (P/N 801566) includes a replacement tube along with other components.
Can I turn the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor On/Off without opening the Enclosure through the RS-232 port in the Enclosure?
Although the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor will respond to remote queries through the RS-232 port, it cannot be switched On/Off remotely. The instrument can, however, be set to record data a predetermined times through the Log 2 or Log 3 modes. Refer to the DustTrak monitor Operation and Service manual for information on how to do this.
Can I use a different cyclone filter on the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
Yes. The flow rate of the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor may need to be adjusted to the respirable size fraction specified by the different Cyclone.
Flow rate can be adjusted between 1.5 and 4.0 L/min, using a TSI Model 4146 Primary
Calibrator, or similar flow measuring device.
Can I use an AC power source to run the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor inside the Enclosure?
There are currently no options available from TSI for using an AC adapter along with the Environmental Enclosure. The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor AC adapter (P/N 2613033) is not rated for outdoor use.
Can I use another battery charger to charge my battery packs?
This is not recommended. The charger provided with the Environmental Enclosure (part no. 801564) has been designed to match the needs of this battery pack. Using another charger could result in severe damage to the battery. The charger charges at 7.5 volts, 850 mA and automatically stops when full charge is reached. The battery is a 6-volt sealed lead-acid type with a rating of 10 amp-hours.
Can I use the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor for remote monitoring applications?
Yes. The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor can be used to monitor aerosol mass concentrations in real-time by transmitting data from remote locations via the analog or serial output features. This real-time information can be used for a variety of remote monitoring applications such as environmental site perimeter monitoring, ambient work area monitoring, and process area monitoring.
Can I use the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor outdoors?
Yes. The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor has been used outdoors but it is not considered weatherproof, so it is not suitable for long-term, unattended operation. However, the optional Environmental Enclosure is designed to protect the DustTrak monitor from harsh weather conditions. It is also sometimes used indoors if the environment is particularly demanding. Click here for details on the Environmental Enclosure.
Can I use the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor to determine when air system filters need to be changed or cleaned?
Yes. If you have established the particle level at which the filters need service, you can use the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor to monitor current operating conditions. Since no alarm or set point capability is provided in the DustTrak monitor, it would be necessary to observe conditions manually.
Can the Environmental Enclosure perform PM10, PM2.5, or PM1.0 sampling?
Yes. The external inlet will effectively sample particles up to 10 microns. Your choice of DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor inlet (impactor) will determine which PM sample is taken.
Do statistics relate to the total time the instrument is turned on or only to the time sampling is taking place?
Statistics are collected only during the time sampling is taking place. This is true whether you are operating in the Survey mode or Logging mode.
Does direct sunlight cause a heat problem within the Enclosure?
No. The light gray color acts as a thermal insulator. This will prevent an increase of the temperature inside the Enclosure above the ambient temperature. The thermal mass of the Enclosure will also dampen temperature fluctuations normally experienced outdoors.
How can I convert the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor's 0-5 VDC analog output to a current output such as 4-20 mA?
By using a standard signal converter that converts 0-5 VDC to 4-20 mA. See TSI Application Note ITI-073 for additional information.
How do I tell if my DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor has the analog and alarm output features?
All DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitors have the analog output and alarm functions as of 10/18/00 beginning with serial number 22499. You can visually verify if your DustTrak monitor is equipped with these features. Look for the 4-pin, mini-DIN connector labeled "Analog/Alarm Output". It is located on the backside of the instrument. All DustTrak monitors with serial numbers from 21960 to 22498 can be upgraded to incorporate these functions for a nominal fee. Older DustTrak monitors with serial numbers lower than 21960 cannot be upgraded to incorporate this new feature. Click here for upgrade information.
How does sampling in high humidity affect the readings obtained from the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
Relative humidity higher than 80 percent can cause particle concentration readings to be biased high from the actual concentration of dry particles. The amount that an aerosol's mass concentration increases due to water absorption is a complex function of the particle's material and the atmosphere's absolute humidity (i.e. specific humidity). This humidity effect can bias the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor's readings up to 60 percent high in the most extreme conditions of high temperature and high relative humidity.
How high should I have my Enclosure off the ground when sampling?
The Enclosure should be kept a reasonable distance off the ground to prevent any major air flow disturbances caused by the ground from affecting the sample obtained. TSI recommends mounting the Environmental Enclosure 3 to 4 feet off the ground.
How long can I run the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor on the external battery pack without charging it?
A fully charged battery will run for up to 60 hours under ideal conditions. The battery pack has an automatic voltage cut-off which prevents the battery from becoming deeply discharged. To prolong the life of your battery, you should recharge it every 24 hours.
How long can the cable be for transmitting the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor's 0-5 VDC analog output?
We have successfully transmitted the 0-5 VDC signal 100 feet using 22 gauge wire without any degredation (voltage drop) in the signal. However, if signal transmission is required over distances greater than 100 feet (30 meters), then a 0-5 VDC to 4-20 mA signal converter should be considered. See TSI Application Note ITI-073 for additional information.
How long is the warranty on the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is warranted to be free from defects in workmanship and material for a period of twenty-four months from the date of shipment to the customer. See the Operation and Service Manual for detailed warranty terms and conditions.
How much data can be logged before the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor runs out of memory?
The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor can log over 31,000 data points, or 21 days of data stored at 1-minute intervals. Logging intervals may be longer or shorter as set by the user.
How often do I need to clean the aerosol inlet?
The inlet does not easily clog with debris and can be operated confidently for an extended period of time without cleaning under most conditions. If the Environmental Enclosure is being operated in high concentrations (more than 20 mg/m3 the inlet may need frequent cleaning. The inlet should be kept clean to prevent debris from constricting the flow. The best way to clean the inlet is to unscrew it from the Enclosure and blow it out from its threaded end (base). If readings are abnormally low make sure that the inlet is clean, and blow it out periodically as a precautionary measure.
How often is calibration required?
TSI recommends returning the instrument to the factory for cleaning and calibration on an annual basis. Turnaround time is typically 2 to 3 working days after receipt of the unit with proper documentation. Recommended user maintenance schedules for routine cleaning, filter replacement, and zero check is covered in the Operation and Service Manual.
If I need to have laboratory analysis performed to obtain independent data, how can the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor help me?
The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor can be used for real-time evaluation of aerosol concentration during sample collection for laboratory analysis. Gravimetric samples only provide an average of concentration over the total collection period. The DustTrak monitor also provides assurance and a record of conditions during the periods between laboratory analysis tests. The DustTrak monitor can be a valuable tool in troubleshooting suspected problem areas or monitoring changing conditions.
Is the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor intrinsically safe?
No. The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor has not been tested or certified for operation in a hazardous area where intrinsic safety is required.
What are the traceability specifications?
There is no National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) standard for optical mass measurements. Calibration of the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is performed by TSI using Emery oilmist aerosol and nominally adjusted to the respirable mass of standard ISO 12103-1, Al test dust (formerly called Arizona test dust).
What batteries are used in the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor, and how long do they last?
The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is shipped with four standard C-size alkaline batteries. Quality alkaline batteries will provide about 16 hours of operation. Nickel cadmium (NiCd) batteries may be used in the DustTrak monitor, but must be recharged in an external charger provided by the user. Operating time using fully charged NiCd batteries will be about 6 hours. For long-term measurement, the DustTrak monitor may be operated on AC power using the adaptor supplied with the instrument. If the DustTrak monitor is powered by the batteries included with the optional Environmental Enclosure, the battery life is at least 24 hours in very cold weather extremes. Click here for details on the life of the batteries included with the Environmental Enclosure.
What happens if my batteries die during a measurement?
Low battery charge is indicated by a battery symbol on the display. The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor will continue to operate for approximately 60 minutes before measurement and logging functions stop. Power will shut off automatically, but the logged data will be retained by an internal lithium backup battery.
What happens if the battery becomes fully discharged while sampling?
When the voltage of the external battery pack reaches 5.1 volts or less, the battery pack will automatically shut off. If the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor does not have an auxiliary power source (internal C-cell size batteries), it will turn off and the sample will be terminated. All data stored in the internal memory will be left intact due to the DustTrak monitor's internal lithium battery back-up feature.
What happens to the analog output signal if the measured aerosol concentration exceeds the programmed scaling limit?
If the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor measures aerosol mass concentrations that are greater than the selected scaling range, the analog output voltage will remain fixed at the maximum of 5.0 volts.
What is the aspiration efficiency of the Environmental Enclosure?
Please refer to TSI Application Note ITI-060 Inlet Aspiration Efficiency of the DustTrak Environmental Enclosure Model 8520-1.
What is the maximum particle concentration that the Environmental Enclosure can handle?
The Environmental Enclosure adds no constraints on the DustTrak and can be used in particle concentrations up to the DustTrak's maximum of 100 mg/m3.
What is the measurement range of the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
The mass concentration range is 0.001 to 100 mg/m³. The particle size range is 0.1 to 10 microns.
What is the warm-up time of the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
When the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is first turned on, it takes about a minute for the instrument to settle down to a stable reading. After warm-up, stable readings can be obtained in 10-15 seconds.
What kind of tripod do I need to mount the Enclosure?
Any style of sturdy industrial tripod will work as long as it utilizes a connector with a 5/8 inch x 11 thread (flat). This type of tripod is often used for surveying instruments. One possible vendor is:Sokkia Measuring SystemsLook on their web site at http://www.sokkia.com for the nearest distributor.Although tripod mounting the Environmental Enclosure is recommended for most applications, other mounting options are acceptable. Mounting on a pole/rail/table/etc. will work suitably.
What length of sample tube can be used with the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is supplied with a 4 foot sampling tube. Using a sampling tube longer than 4 feet is not recommended because particle transport losses in the tube may adversely affect the measurement.
What type of device is the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is a laser photometer. The sensing mechanism consists of a laser diode directed at the aerosol stream. Scattered light is collected with optics and a photodetector at 90° to the light beam. The intensity of the scattered light is a function of the particle mass concentration.
What U.S. standards or guidelines apply to ambient particulate levels in buildings?
ASHRAE 62-1989 states: "Indoor air quality shall be considered acceptable if the required rates of acceptable outdoor air are provided for the occupied space." ASHRAE 62-1989 references the national primary ambient-air quality standard for outdoor air as set by the U.S. EPA. Long term:50 µg/m³ concentration average over 1 year (0.05 mg/m³) Short term:150 µg/m³ concentration average over 24 hours (0.150 mg/m³) Although this standard was developed for outdoor air, current thinking by industry experts is that indoor air quality should be as good as that of the outdoor air. Exposure values for specific substances are published by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration), NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health), and ACGIH (American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists).
Where can I get a connector to mate with the 4-pin, mini-DIN output connector on the back of the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
Connectors are commercially available. Just specify a male, 4-pin, mini-DIN connector.
Where do I find technical information on interfacing and using the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor analog output and alarm functions?
This technical information can be found in TSI Application Note ITI-073 and Application Note ITI-074 for the analog and alarm output functions, respectively.
Where is the best place to set up the Environmental Enclosure?
The Environmental Enclosure can be set up and operated effectively in most outdoor locations. Rooftops, bench tops, fields, and ditches are all examples of places you could place the Environmental Enclosure. The inlet tube must be oriented substantially perpendicular to the ground and in a place where there are no obstructions that will disturb the air flow around it. Lood for a location with consistent, stable wind conditions, and without swirling turbulence. Trees, buildings, or other large objects will cause flow distrubance around the aerosol inlet and adversely affect readings. The best rule of thumb is to put it in the most open area available.
Which DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor size-conditioning inlets can I use in conjunction with the Environmental Enclosure?
The Environmental Enclosure is compatible with the 1.0, 2.5, and 10.0 micrometer size-conditioning inlets (impactors) supplied with the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor. The TSI-supplied cyclone (P/N 800665) is not compatible with the Environmental Enclosure.
Will running the flow through the additional aerosol inlet (impactor) change the flow rate to the DustTrak?
No. The pressure drop is minimal through the omnidirectional aerosol inlet on the Environmental Enclosure and causes no change in the volume of air that the DustTrak is sampling. Be sure to set the DustTrak flow rate to 1.7 L/min before installing it in the enclosure. The sampling inlet on the Enclosure is specifically designed for a flow rate of 1.7 L/min.
Will the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor measure liquid aerosols such as water and oil?
Yes. A major advantage of using the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is its ability to measure volatile aerosols such as water and oil. These cannot be measured accurately gravimetrically because of evaporation from the collection filter.