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 measure other particle size ranges with the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor?
Yes. The DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor is supplied with inlet conditioners (impactors) that limit the upper size to 2.5 or 1.0 microns. Additionally, the DustTrak monitor is supplied with a 10-millimeter Nylon Dorr-Oliver Cyclone for respirable sampling with a cut-off at 4 microns.
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 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 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 logged data be transferred to another database or spreadsheet for reporting or data analysis?
Yes. Data can be exported in standard comma-delimited ASCII format. Most spreadsheet and database programs can read this format. (TrakPro™ Data Analysis Software version 1.1 or higher required.)
Can the Log 1, Log 2, and Log 3 modes be operating at the same time?
No. Only one logging function can be activated at a time.
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.
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 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 long will the DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor operate before the internal filter overloads in an environment containing 3-5 mg/m³ dust?
At a 5 mg/m³ concentration, the internal nozzle requires cleaning at 70-hour operation intervals and the internal filter must be replaced after 140 hours of operation. This subject is covered in the Operation and Service Manual.
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 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.
I purchased my DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor before the analog and alarm features were available. Can I upgrade my DustTrak?
All DustTrak™ Aerosol 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.
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.
I'm not a computer expert. What is the easiest way to understand the TrakPro software?
TrakPro software includes example data files. These files contain test examples useful for learning how the software operates independent of the instrument.
Is logged data retained if I change the instrument batteries?
Yes. There is an internal backup battery that protects all stored data. The battery is designed to last for several years.
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 computer requirements for TrakPro Data Analysis Software?
Microsoft Windows® XP (32-bit only) or 7 (32-bit or 64-bit) operating systems.
What are the differences between Log 1, Log 2, and Log 3 modes?
Log 1 mode requires a manual start/stop action. Logging interval and time constant may be set from the keypad. Log 2 and Log 3 modes provide automatic start/stop logging for unattended operation. The two modes are identical in their basic operation, but may be programmed individually using a PC compatible computer and TrakPro™ software. The following items may be defined: Start date Start time Test length Logging interval Number of tests Time delay between tests After Log 2 and Log 3 protocols have been defined using TrakPro software, the Q-Trak™ Plus IAQ Monitor/DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor will retain the programmed information.
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 does the TrakPro™ Data Analysis Software allow me to do?
TrakPro™ Data Analysis Software has numerous functions: Download (receive) stored data from the Q-Trak™ Plus IAQ Monitor, DustTrak™ Aerosol Monitor, ProtectAir™ Multi-gas Monitor, and P-Trak® Ultrafine Particle Counter data logger. Store test data to disk. Display data in table or graphical form. Send table or graphical information to a monochrome or color printer. Combine multiple data sets into a single graph for comparison purposes. Up to six channels of data may be presented from tests run at the same time or at different times. Create graph titles, annotate graphs, change scales. Print graphs on monochrome or color printers. Export data to other database or spreadsheet software via comma-delimited ASCII data file. Set date and time functions in the Q-Trak Plus monitor, DustTrak monitor, ProtectAir monitor, and P-Trak counter. Alter the selection of logging intervals and time constants available for Log 1 in the Q-Trak Plus monitor/DustTrak monitor/P-Trak counter. Define & upload data logging protocols (log 2 & log 3) used by the Q-Trak Plus monitor/DustTrak monitor/P-Trak counter for unattended operation.
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 data logger memory becomes full?
If the data logger becomes full, the test in progress will stop. Information stored up to that point will be retained in the data logger.
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 analog output resolution in volts per milligram/m³?
The analog output resolution is a function of the scaling range selected. See TSI Application Note ITI-073 for more detailed information.
What is the cost of the TrakPro software?
TrakPro Data Analysis Software is provided at no additional charge.
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 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.
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.