TerraTherm Gains Certification of Heating System

As an Electrical Engineer at TerraTherm, one of the most interesting (and at times challenging) aspects of my work stems from the following deceptively simple article from the National Electric Code (NEC): Article 110.2 of the NEC NEC 110: Requirement for Electrical Installations The conductors and equipment required or permitted by this Code shall be acceptable only if approved. Since the NEC is adopted, and in many instances with amendments, by individual states, this one simple article may be expanded to include additional requirements.  For example, in the California Electric Code (CEC): CEC – Sec. 83-2  All Electrical materials, devices, … Continue reading

Posted in In Situ Thermal Remediation | Leave a comment

Speeding down the Data Highway

Interpreting analytical data collected from our process streams during operations is sort of like driving a car forward, but only being able to look at the rearview mirror. During operations at our thermal remediation sites, TerraTherm routinely collects a variety of process vapor (whole air canisters/bottle-vacs, and/or solid adsorbent tubes) and liquid samples.  The exact sampling and analytical methods used vary from site to site; each site is truly unique with different combinations of subsurface contaminants, site geology/groundwater chemistries, heating approach, as well as site specific cleanup goals and permitted discharge limits. These process analytical data are used to: Evaluate … Continue reading

Posted in Data Management, In Situ Thermal Remediation | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Process of Hot Soil Sampling and Why it’s Worth the Effort

Do you like to get your hands dirty? For TerraTherm, hot soil sampling is often the defining parameter for the timeline and completion of an In Situ Thermal Remediation project, and for myself, was a great learning experience and an opportunity for me to try something new and exciting. Cleanup of contaminant source zones is what TerraTherm is known for. And those source zones that keep us in business are analyzed through soil sampling. For most project sites, the soil is sampled at various locations before the project begins, sometimes a few times during operations, and one final confirmation round … Continue reading

Posted in In Situ Thermal Remediation, Other | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

World’s Largest In Situ Thermal Desorption Project: Challenges and Solutions

TerraTherm and its In Situ Thermal Desorption (ISTD) sublicense holders have cleaned close to 50 sites, but what happens when we are presented with one that is remarkably large with more than 100,000 cubic yards (76,500 m3) of PCE and TCE rich soils to a depth of over 40 feet (12 m)? The site in particular that was presented to TerraTherm was a former aerospace manufacturing facility and had to be remediated in less than a year. Successfully completed by TerraTherm, this site in Teterboro, New Jersey is now the largest ISTD project to date. The redevelopment of this former … Continue reading

Posted in In Situ Thermal Remediation, Sites/Projects, Technologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

TerraTherm Enjoys Rapid Growth as ISTR Gains Industry Acceptance

Recently, TerraTherm was featured in Environmental Business Journal’s 2015 Remediation issue. The article, “TerraTherm Enjoys Rapid Growth as ISTR Gains Industry Acceptance,” features an interview with TerraTherm co-founder, CEO and President, John Bierschenk. TerraTherm has grown its revenue nearly three-fold to greater than $30 million over the prior three years. By diversifying its project portfolios and building a strong backlog of upcoming projects, our strong growth rate will continue in 2015, reflecting an expanding demand for quick, predictable and cost effective remediation solutions. Mr. Bierschenk cites overall industry acceptance of ISTR technologies since they first emerged from the enhanced oil recovery … Continue reading

Posted in In Situ Thermal Remediation | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Why I Drive a Tesla

Over the past 2 ½ years, TerraTherm employees and visitors alike have commented on the car I park outside the office, a Tesla Model S all-electric sedan.  “How do you like the car?” “Cool car!” and “How’s it do in the winter?” are commonly heard, and I love talking about it, and giving folks rides, since it truly is a wonderful car: fast, agile, great looking, quiet, safe and reliable.  Its 200-mile range, combined with the ever-growing number of Tesla Superchargers nationwide, has enabled me to drive it as far as New York and New Jersey on occasion, and someday … Continue reading

Posted in In Situ Thermal Remediation, Other | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Webinar Recordings: Vapor Treatment Optimization Approaches and Thermal Treatment – Challenges and Solutions

In case you missed the last two installments of TerraTherm’s educational webinar series, you can now watch the recorded presentations. Vapor Treatment Optimization Approaches: Safe and Effective Compliance Strategies Description: Presented by TerraTherm’s Engineering Manager, Steve McInerney, P.E., on May 28th, 2015, this webinar covers optimization strategies for treating vapors recovered during thermal remediation operations. The discussion focuses on a range of vapor-phase operating conditions encountered during both low temperature and high temperature thermal operations, and methods to limit total capital and operating cost impacts to a project. Safe and efficient vapor conditioning and treatment approaches that are routinely employed to ensure cost … Continue reading

Posted in In Situ Thermal Remediation, Webinars | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Effective Safety Management of ISTR Sites

There are numerous health and safety challenges that can be found on an In Situ Thermal Remediation (ISTR) site.  From performing health risk assessments for hazardous chemicals to identifying and correcting on-site physical hazards or working with and managing a variety of subcontractors, there is an extensive list of safety and regulatory concerns that need to be addressed. Managing these concerns can often appear to be a daunting task, but with a practical, risk-based safety management approach, ISTR can be performed safely, as well as effectively. At TerraTherm, our strong safety management system begins with a commitment to safe work … Continue reading

Posted in In Situ Thermal Remediation, Other | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Bench Scale Thermal Treatment of 1,4-Dioxane

1,4-Dioxane (not to be confused with dioxin…although we also can certainly thermally treat that! See our updates from the Danang Vietnam project) is an industrial chemical widely used as a chemical stabilizer for chlorinated solvents. It is of environmental concern due to its classification as a probable human carcinogen coupled with its unique chemical properties such as high water solubility (and therefore high subsurface mobility in groundwater), low octanol-water partition coefficient (log Kow), and relative resistance to biodegradation [1]. Due to these properties, 1,4-dioxane is often present on the leading edge of a contaminant plume in groundwater and presents unique … Continue reading

Posted in Data Management, In Situ Thermal Remediation, Technologies | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Lower Explosive Limit (LEL) Monitoring for Estimating Mass Removed

Since 2000, TerraTherm has removed over three million pounds of organic contaminants from the sites we have treated. Many of these sites had yielded too much mass to economically use granular activated carbon as the vapor treatment method. Therefore, we often use thermal oxidizers, using gas and the fuel value of the contaminants to treat the vapors at temperatures of 1500°F (816°C) or higher. The National Fire Protection Agency has mandated continuous monitoring of vapors entering oxidizers when those vapors are expected to be over the 25% Lower Explosive Limit (LEL). Additionally, thermal oxidizers generally have a safe upper operable … Continue reading

Posted in Data Management, FAQs, In Situ Thermal Remediation, Sites/Projects | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment