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Toxics Use Reduction Case Studies

Brooks Instrument, LLC. Lead-free Electronics Implementation. 2008.

  TURI Technical Report No. 59. During 2007 and 2008, the Institute worked with representatives from Benchmark Electronics, Brooks Instrument, and Emerson Process Management to conduct and document a lead-free electronics implementation for a high reliability electronics product that is exempt from the European RoHS Directive. The research information provided by the New England Lead-free Consortium, as well as the information contained in this case study, is of high value to companies that need to transition to lead-free electronics for their high reliability products. The Institute's university research program continues to fund research efforts to reduce the use of toxic chemicals in the electronics industry. Download PDF file (5.56 MB)

Export Case: Lead Free Electronics Industry. 2006

  Work over the last several years to develop lead-free solder alloys has identified numerous technical challenges. Because no "drop-in" lead-solder replacement has been found, lead-free requires a change in design of whole products. Industry has been actively working on developing alternatives, with many industry consortia sharing R and D resources. In 1997 one of the largest consortia conducted a study of 80 lead-free solder alternatives, recommending 3 alloys for further study. However the rapid time frame of EU legislation, combined with technical difficulties, concerns that new solders will become future regulatory targets, and difficulty agreeing on either a lead-free solder or a standard definition of "lead free", have made for a difficult transition with many companies scrambling to meet EU guidelines. Download PDF file (124.51 kB)

Import Case: Formaldehyde in Construction. 2006.

  Formaldehyde was discovered in 1867. It is a widely used basic building block chemical that is now in a plethora of products and processes including adhesives, hard surface building materials, insulation, floor finish, and composites. In 2003, 4 million metric tons (MMT) of 37% Formaldehyde was used in the US and 24 MMT was used worldwide. Formaldehyde-free products have slowly become more available. Initially imported from specialty manufacturers to meet niche consumer demand by chemical sensitive individuals and green-motivated builders, such products are increasingly developed by domestic and larger companies as demand increases. The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), founded in 1993, publicly launched the Leadership in Energy and Environment (LEED) certification in 2000. In 1997 the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Energy committee expanded to become the Committee on the Environment. Many other green building groups have emerged. LEED in particular has advanced green building, creating "bragging rights" for green firms and owners. Green-building cost premium estimates have reduced from +20% to +2-5% in up front cost (that pays for itself) . This change is attributed to greater availability of green technology and building materials. Download PDF file (337.70 kB)

Local Case: Perchloroethylene in Dry Cleaning. 2006.

  Perc was introduced as a drycleaning solvent in the late 1930s. It first replaced other synthetic solvents, and then gradually replaced petroleum derived solvents until it became the dominant solvent in the early 1960s. Perc was effective, reusable, noncorrosive, inexpensive, nonflammable and less toxic than existing alternatives. After regulation in 1993, a number of alternatives began to be developed (petroleum or hydrocarbon, carbon dioxide, silicone based, and "wet" cleaning). However, adoption of these alternatives is slow. Perc is still used by over 70 % of drycleaners nationally. With better practices and equipment, the amount of Perc the industry consumes has declined dramatically. Download PDF file (172.59 kB)

Learning From the Solutia EMS Experience: Implementing an EMS System at the Solutia, Inc. Indian Orchard Plant . 2005.

  TURI Methods and Policy Report No. 24 This report discusses a project that provided an opportunity for sector companies to share specific tools and lessons learned as each company worked independently and concurrently to develop its own Environmental Management System (EMS). The workgroup concept was designed to take advantage of the Institute‚Äôs research and training capabilities to assist a number of companies simultaneously. Download PDF file (87.70 kB)

Phase III - Reliability Testing Results of Surface Mounted Lead Free Soldering Materials and Processes, 2005

  Article published in SMT magazine related to TURI's Lead-Free work. The world-wide movement to phase out lead from electronic products presents many challenges for companies throughout the electronics supply chain. The University of Massachusetts at Lowell has brought together many Massachusetts/New England firms to collaborate on the manufacture and testing of lead-free printed wiring boards (PWBs). The results of the first set of experiments, published in 2001, showed that zero-defect soldering is achievable with lead-free materials. Following thermal cycling, the PWBs were visually inspected and the leads were pull-tested for reliability analysis. They compared favorably to a baseline of lead soldered PWBs A follow-on design of experiments was created in 2002 and a second set of test PWBs was made and tested in 2003. Three lead-free solder pastes based on Sn/Ag/Cu alloys were reflowed using either air or nitrogen with five PWB surface finishes, four component types with two types of component finish. Visual inspection and pull-testing were performed and published as completed in APEX, SMTI and IEEE conferences. This paper summarizes the testing results and introduces further research plans in volume manufacturing of lead free PWBs for the phase III testing sponsored by the EPA. Download PDF file (388.79 kB)

Alternatives Assessment for Toxics Use Reduction: A Survey of Methods and Tools. 2005.

  TURI Methods & Policy Report No. 23. One of the key challenges in toxics use reduction planning is alternatives assessment. This is the process whereby a chemical, material or product that has been identified as toxic is compared with alternatives to find a substitute that is safer for workers, communities and ecosystems. This report reviews nine alternatives assessment methods that have been developed by government and private organizations in the United States and Europe and is designed to assist Massachusetts companies in the process of alternatives assessment for chemical hazards. Download PDF file (662.65 kB)

Environmental, Health and Safety Issues in the Coated Wire and Cable Industry. 2002.

  TURI Technical Report No. 51. Environmental, health and safety concerns with the basic raw materials used in manufacturing coated wire and cable are driving innovation and change in the industry. These concerns include the life cycle impacts of heavy metals such as lead, brominated flame-retardants, and resin systems based on polyvinyl chloride. Seeking to help Massachusetts' wire and cable industry deal with the complex regulatory and technical issues, the Toxics Use Reduction Institute at UMASS Lowell contracted the preparation of this background report. The report examines the sector's main environmental, health and safety issues, European and United States (U.S.) regulatory drivers, and the state of new materials development. The report also outlines a set of research and technology diffusion recommendations for the Institute and is meant to serve as an introduction and reference point for those in industry, government and academia concerned with wire and cable industry environmental, health and safety issues. Download PDF file (389.71 kB)

TURA Data Review-Cable and Wire Industry Sector. 2002.

  TURI Methods & Policy Report No. 22. The Toxics Use Reduction Institute (TURI) commissioned this report to evaluate the Toxics Use Reduction Act (TURA) data provided by facilities within the Cable & Wire industry. The data are analyzed in four ways: industry-wide, by facility, by chemical, and by TUR technique. Download PDF file (256.49 kB)

Elimination of Acid and Lead on Wire Strand Annealing and Galvanizing, Riverdale Mills Corp. 2000.

  TURI Technical Report No. 48. Requiring the addition of a new multi-wire strand galvanizing line to meet growing market demand, Riverdale Mills made the goals of toxics use reduction a large part of the operational requirements of the new line. The company sought to reduce or eliminate the chemicals conventionally used in the process, the byproducts generated and the energy required. These goals required the innovative re-thinking of a mature industrial process. Riverdale Mills chose an induction heating chamber for the annealing process, eliminating the use of lead in the conventional liquid lead annealing process. Following annealing, commercial hot-dip wire galvanizing operations typically use hydrochloric acid in a pickling process, and zinc ammonium chloride as a flux prior to immersion into the zinc bath. Modifying the annealing process and annealing within an inert atmosphere replaced both the pickling and the flux processes; these were replaced by an alkaline soap pre-wash and hot water rinse. Re-engineering the process to eliminate the need to re-heat the wire during processing achieved significant energy savings. Download PDF file (55.55 kB)

Technology Application Analysis Template Utilizing SuparatorTM Thin Film Oil Recovery System. 1999.

  TURI Technical Report No. 47. The design of the Suparator incorporates an innovative adaptation of Bernoulli's Principle. (Fluid flow across an asymmetric foil causes a pressure differential to be applied along the surface of that foil. This pressure differential is the result of the differing fluid velocities required to maintain laminar flow across the asymmetric structure.) The Suparator is capable of recovering thin films of floating oil by utilizing the specific gravity differential between oil and water. The thin-film separation technology used by the Suparator was originally developed for the petroleum refining industry, which required a continuous high efficiency oil-water separation process. This proven technology was adapted to aqueous cleaning applications to address the need for a reliable and consistent oil-water separation method for modern, high-throughput aqueous cleaning processes. The flow rates and oil loadings associated with such modern, high-throughput aqueous cleaning processes often exceed the processing capability of traditional EOP techniques. Download PDF file (5.36 MB)
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