03 Jul Benefits of Point of Use (POU) Gas Abatement
The earliest point of use abatement systems (POU) were designed to provide emergency abatement for difficult to scrub gases that provided unusual safety hazards. These gases could create catastrophic or health damage if they leaked from, or reacted within, the facility ducting. Hence, local (point of use) gas scrubbers were developed to abate these gases as close to the point of origin as possible in order to minimize risk. Examples of these gases include silane (SiH4), phosphine (PH3), and arsine (AsH3).
Evolution of Point of Use Abatement
Another driving factor in the development of point-of -use technology was the desire to off-load abatement from central facility scrubbing systems. Many facilities have found that their central facility scrubber (CFS) systems are nearly 100 percent utilized while the increasing complexity and larger flow rates in modern processes requires additional abatement capacity. Since adding additional CFS capacity is very expensive and requires extensive permitting, the desire to reduce the loading on CFS systems is a major reason for increasing point-of-use scrubbing. POU gas scrubbers can actually meet new abatement requirements and reduce the loading on CFS systems.
Finally, point-of-use abatement can be directed toward process specific gas abatement and thereby increase destruction and removal efficiency (DRE) on those gases. In addition, POU abatement enables the EHS engineer to more closely track waste discharge and capture in order to demonstrate compliance with environmental regulations.
Point of use abatement equipment offers a number of advantages for both new and existing manufacturing facilities. First, these devices offer economic benefits by reducing the total loading on CFS equipment. This reduces the capital and operating costs associated with CFS systems. In addition, employing POU equipment can yield large increases in DRE due to the fact that POU tools can be specialized for a given process, while CFS tools by their very nature, must be general in scope. Finally, POU tools can increase plant safety and reduce facility maintenance by intercepting corrosive, particulate laden, flammable, and toxic gas streams. These streams are immediately captured following the reactor, and therefore do not have to be transported large distances to CFS abatement equipment.
Critical Systems has been providing gas delivery & abatement systems, components, and support services for the past 12 years. See CSI’s Gas Scrubbers page for more information.