ThermOmegaTech and Grundfos Announce Partnership

This month, ThermOmegaTech and Grundfos announced a partnership, bringing together two industry leaders to simplify and enhance domestic plumbing systems and installations for contractors throughout the United States.

Beginning in late Q1, the partnership will offer a new packaged solution featuring ThermOmegaTech’s CircuitSolver® product line with the appropriate pump from the Grundfos MAGNA Series.

“We are excited about growing our relationship with a well-respected worldwide company like Grundfos,” said Tom Ruggierio, national business development manager at ThermOmegaTech. “Having two companies with innovative, synergistic products working together will bring optimized solutions for domestic hot water systems that will serve the plumbing community well.”

The partnership supports the companies’ shared goals of enhancing the accessibility and conservation of water, our most precious resource, by providing solutions that exceed energy and efficiency standards. “Working together allows us to save time for contractors who no longer need to source the appropriate pump style and size,” said Ruggierio. “The CircuitSolver® solution will now come with an expert-recommended pump, allowing contractors to focus their efforts on what they do best — the installation.”

“We continue to be impressed by the innovation of our ThermOmegaTech partner. Joining forces is a win-win opportunity for both companies as well as our manufacturer representatives, contractors, and the homeowners,” said Barry Nauss, Grundfos vice president of HVAC OEM. “When used together, our products greatly minimize water consumption and increase energy efficiency by optimizing the recirculating flow rate. This ensures the precise amount of water and power are utilized as water rotates through the system versus flowing down the drain. We’re proud to offer our new, sustainability-focused packaged solutions to the market.”

Grundfos and ThermOmegaTech will also offer expert training sessions together in 2022 with the goal of increasing awareness of the benefits their product portfolios bring to a domestic hot water system.

In the News: STVM Washdown Station Combines Steam, Water, and Safety in an Easy to Maintain Package

In food processing, dairy, beverage, chemical, petrochemical, and pharmaceutical facilities maintaining a clean environment is critical. High-temperature washdown equipment is used to quickly and efficiently clean and sanitize equipment in place to keep production running on time. These washdown stations mix steam and cold water to provide hot water for facility clean-up.

Maintaining competitor washdown units can be time-consuming due to complex disassembly, special tooling requirements, and non-reusable components. ThermOmegaTech, a leader in self-actuating thermostatic valve technology, supplies an innovative solution to the challenge of difficult to maintain washdown units.

ThermOmegaTech’s STVM Washdown Station delivers a high-temperature wash at a user-defined temperature using our proprietary Silent Venturi Mixing Valve (STVM) to combine steam and water. Our mixing valve’s design is self-scouring, which prevents mineral buildup in tight spaces and reduces maintenance frequency.

STVM Steam & Water Washdown Station

To minimize downtime during routine maintenance, the STVM Washdown Station has a simple cartridge design, which is removed with a wrench and cleaned in a descaling solution before reassembly. The station is in-line serviceable, so the operator simply switches out the STVM Cartridge with a spare and the unit is operating in minutes.

Worker safety is every facility’s priority, so we built it into our washdown’s operation.

“The STVM Washdown Station has two safety features to keep your employees safe. One, the mixing valve is designed to reduce flow if the output temperature exceeds the factory set-point and will completely stop flow 15°F above that,” Nick Tallos, ThermOmegaTech’s VP of Engineering said. “Two, the unit has interlocking steam and water shut-off ball valves, so both inlets shut-off at the same time to prevent accidental steam-only, ‘hose full of steam’ operation.”

Due to the unique design of the STVM Cartridge’s water and steam mixing spool, the unit operates at around 20 decibels less than competitor washdown units. This reduces overall operator stress and improves workplace conditions.

The unit functions completely mechanically and requires no outside source of electricity to operate. Compact and reliable, the STVM Washdown Station is a beneficial addition to any facility.

Originally published in The National Provisioner.

In the News: Chemical Production Factory Expansion to Install 26 Therm-O-Mix® Tepid Water Delivery Stations

Originally published in Industrial Safety & Hygiene News.

Safety showers and face/eyewash stations are critical pieces of equipment in any workplace where chemical spills are a potential threat. ThermOmegaTech®, a leader in self-actuating thermostatic technology, offers an innovative solution to the challenge of supplying safety fixtures with consistently tepid water on demand.

An industrial chemical manufacturer located in Ontario, Canada recently began a $2 billion expansion of their existing production facility. Due to the presence of potentially hazardous materials in chemical manufacturing, the installation of safety showers and face/eyewash stations was a plant necessity.

The company’s other sites have had success using ThermOmegaTech®’s Therm-O-Mix® Station for instantaneous tepid water delivery, therefore the Therm-O-Mix® Station was again selected for this expansion to promote overall conformity of safety equipment and procedures. ThermOmegaTech®’s TV/SC-A valve was also chosen to control the safety station enclosure’s ambient air temperature.

The Therm-O-Mix® Station utilizes only a facility’s existing steam and water supply to instantaneously deliver tepid water to emergency safety showers and face/eyewash stations. When an emergency fixture is activated, the resulting pressure drop on a diaphragm establishes flow and opens a steam control valve, which the station uses to heat cold water. The now hot water travels through an initial tempering valve that adds cold water and reduces the water temperature to about 100°F (37.7°C), then through a second mixing valve that adds more cold water and lowers the temperature to an OSHA-approved 80°F (26.6°C), before being delivered through the emergency fixtures.

The expansion project included a mix of classified and non-classified environments. Equipment in the classified section of the plant needed to be explosion-proof due to the sensitive nature of the chemicals produced on-site and by selecting the Therm-O-Mix®, the facility avoided the need for an expensive insulation process.

“Our Therm-O-Mix® Station operates completely mechanically,” Timothy Hartung, industrial product manager at ThermOmegaTech® commented. “It doesn’t require a source of electricity to operate, so it’s the ideal tepid water delivery product for refineries and factories with explosion proof environments.”

A necessary addition to any new or existing facility to comply with ANSI Z358.1, the Therm-O-Mix® Station has a small footprint, does not require insulated tanks or expensive recirculation systems, and is self-purging so there is no need for an elaborate drainage system.

The Therm-O-Mix® Station was mounted onto the outside of a polar cubicle and plumbed to deliver tepid water to the safety showers and face/eyewash station inside of the cubicle.

To maintain the temperature inside of the cubicle at a level where users would feel comfortable disrobing for proper safety shower operation, ThermOmegaTech®’s TV/SC-A valve was selected to control the flow of steam.

A thermostatic actuator on the end of the TV/SC-A valve located inside of the polar cubicle monitors and responds to the ambient temperature inside the cubicle. When the temperature falls to the valves set point, the TV/SC-A modulates open to allow steam to flow through a radiation element, which is traced inside of the cubicle to warm it up. Once the ambient temperature has risen, the valve modulates closed again to conserve steam.

“Installation of 26 integrated units is currently underway at the facility and will be completed by the end of 2019,” Hartung commented.

Compact and reliable, the Therm-O-Mix® tepid water delivery station is an essential fixture in any facility where chemicals are being handled to ensure both worker safety and guideline compliance.

Check out the full article at ISHN.com.

 

In the News: Preventing Legionnaires’ Disease with DHWS Design

Legionnaires’ disease is arguably the hottest topic in the plumbing industry today.

First identified after an outbreak in 1976, this potentially fatal form of pneumonia is contracted by aspirating Legionella bacteria and presents with coughing, shortness of breath, fever, and pain.

Since its initial discovery, the bacteria has been found to be pervasive in large-scale water systems, leading to offices, hospitals, hotels, and other sizeable buildings to double down on their sanitization, identification, and prevention efforts.

Legionella bacteria can be found in many domestic hot and cold water systems in trace amounts but does not present a health concern until it colonizes, and the bacteria are atomized and aspirated. In warm, stagnant water, the bacteria can grow and multiply to high concentrations, which is when it becomes dangerous.

Organizations differ on the specific temperature at which the bacteria will grow, but the most common range stated for Legionella bacteria survival is 68°-122°F (20°-50°C). The bacteria are dormant below 68° (20° C) and do not survive above 140° (60° C).

The key to preventing Legionnaires’ disease is to make sure that building owners and managers follow a water management program.

Unfortunately, there is no one guideline to follow on how to reduce the risk of Legionella growth and spread. Go to any ASPE meeting and ask the members what the best way is to prevent Legionella and you are likely to get as many different answers as there are attendees.

Organizations that mandate domestic hot water systems design guidelines and recommendations are similarly scattered and contradictory in their requirements, torn between the need for energy conservation and Legionella prevention.

ASHRAE, which touts energy conservation practices, suggests that temperature maintenance systems should be automatically switched off “during extended periods when hot water is not required,” whereas OSHA states that in the interest of Legionella prevention, DHWS should be excluded from energy conservation measures and run continuously…

To check out the full article visit pmengineer.com.

In the News: CircuitSolver Solves Bacteriological Problems

Being “first” often sets the bar high. As one of the first manufacturers of a thermostatic balancing valve for domestic hot water systems, ThermOmegaTech’s commitment has not just been to set the bar but also to raise the bar. Since the introduction of its CircuitSolver in 2012, the company has frequently added components, including ball valves, strainers, check valves, and ProPress ends to meet customer demand.

In April 2018, the innovation continued with the launch of the CircuitSolver Union Sanitary Flush thermostatic balancing valve for domestic hot water systems. The union is integral with the valve body, which also has an optional integral check valve. A key feature of the CircuitSolver Union Sanitary Flush is the new capability to automatically balance a domestic hot water system during a high-temperature sanitary flush procedure.

In the following Q&A with ThermOmegaTech, Plumbing Engineer explores the features of the new product, including its ability to mitigate Legionella and other bacteriological problems.

PE: What makes CircuitSolver Union Sanitary Flush different from other valves on the market?

TOT: It has all-stainless steel construction for maximum corrosion resistance and durability. It is NSF61 and NSF372 certified — even though it seems that all components in a domestic hot water system (DHWS) should be certified and most plumbing codes and specifications say they must be, not all balancing valves are certified. The valve is completely automatic, thermostatically balancing both the standard recirculation temperature as well as the high-temperature sanitary flush cycle. No power, signal, or powered actuators are required, as in some other such balancing valves.

ThermOmegaTech’s design is highly resistant to mineral buildup and the adverse effects of debris in the piping system. It is the only tamper-proof thermostatic balancing valve on the market. Other competitive devices are adjustable for several reasons: those manufacturers don’t manufacture their own thermal actuators as ThermOmegaTech does. They can not be as flexible and offer all the setpoint variations we can, so their valve is adjustable, making it prone to tampering and/or being set to a temperature other than what the designer specified.

With CircuitSolver Union Sanitary Flush, the plumbing system designer specifies the desired temperature and the valves are factory-set to that exact setting.

PE: What are the benefits or special features of the CircuitSolver Union Sanitary Flush that are specific to those designing and specifying thermostatic balancing valves for DHWS?

TOT: CircuitSolver Union Sanitary Flush brings the benefits of the standard CircuitSolver into high-temperature sanitary flush applications. There is no manual balancing required. It can simply be installed; once the system is turned on, within minutes the building’s DHWS is balanced…

To check out the full article visit PHCPPROS.com.

In the News: Controlling Hydraulic Oil Temperatures

With cooler weather on the way, you may not be too worried about rising oil temperatures, but the fact is, any industrial hydraulic system running higher than 140 degrees is too hot. Consider that for every 18-degree increase in temperature above 140 degrees, the life of the oil is cut in half. Systems that operate at high temperatures can produce sludge and varnish, which result in the sticking of valve spools.

Pumps and hydraulic motors bypass more oil at high temperatures, causing the machine to operate at a slower speed. In some cases, high oil temperatures can waste electrical energy by making the pump drive motor pull more current to operate the system. O-rings also harden at higher temperatures, leading to more leaks in the system. So what checks and tests should you perform if the oil temperature is higher than 140 degrees?

Causes of Heat Generation

Every hydraulic system generates a certain amount of heat. Approximately 25 percent of the input electrical horsepower will be used to overcome heat losses in the system. Whenever oil is ported back to the reservoir and no useful work is done, heat will be generated.

The tolerances inside pumps and valves are normally in the ten-thousandths of an inch. These tolerances permit a small amount of oil to continuously bypass the internal components, causing the fluid temperature to rise. When oil is flowing through the lines, a series of resistances will be encountered. For example, flow controls, proportional valves and servo valves control the oil’s flow rate by restricting flow. When oil flows through the valves, a “pressure drop” occurs. This means that a higher pressure will exist at the valve’s inlet port than the outlet port. Anytime oil flows from a higher pressure to a lower pressure, heat is generated and absorbed in the oil.

When a system is initially designed, the reservoir and heat exchangers are sized to remove the generated heat. The reservoir allows some of the heat to dissipate through the walls to the atmosphere. If properly sized, heat exchangers should remove the balance of the heat, enabling the system to operate at approximately 120 degrees F…

To check out the full article visit Machinery Lubrication.com.

In the News: Why Your Hydraulic Machine Probably Needs an Oil Cooler – and a Big One!

A lot of attention is paid to contamination of hydraulic fluid, usually viewed as dirt, water, and air. But heat is also quite detrimental to hydraulic fluid and may account as many component failures as “regular” contamination.

The inconvenient truth about hydraulic machines is they are heat-generating systems. They are not unique in this respect: Energy conversion and control with 100% efficiency remains elusive. But it’s my contention that unavoidable inefficiency, which manifests as energy contamination of the hydraulic fluid, does not command the attention it deserves.

With the exception of the reservoir, every component in a hydraulic system is a heat-generating device. The process of moving hydraulic fluid through a conductor from A to B results in pressure drop and, therefore, heat generation. Installing depth filters to control particle contamination also creates a pressure drop, which increases heat load. Pumps and motors leak internally, resulting still more heat-generating pressure drops. The charge pump on a hydrostatic transmission is 100% heat load. In open circuits, heat-generating orifices, throttles (in all their various forms), and hydrostats are installed to control direction, flow, and pressure—and loads are counterbalanced by installing hydraulic resistance.

The point is that energy wasting-pressure drops are a fact of life in hydraulic systems. They can (and should) be minimized, but they can’t be completely eliminated. So let’s stop ignoring the elephant in the room. Because if left unchecked, energy contamination is just as problematic as particle contamination, and arguably more so.

Energy Contamination Affects Lubrication

Adequate lubrication of hydraulic components and efficient power transmission both depend on appropriate oil viscosity. If hydraulic fluid temperature is allowed to exceed that required to maintain viscosity at around 20 centiStokes (cSt), the likelihood of boundary lubrication—resulting in friction and wear—increases dramatically.

The temperature at which this point is reached depends on the fluid’s viscosity grade and its viscosity index (VI). The VI is a measure of an oil’s resistance to change in viscosity with a change in temperature. An oil with a high VI is often called a multi-grade oil. Multi-grade oils are often specified for equipment that must operate in cold. The high VI helps prevent the oil’s viscosity from increasing (thickening) at low temperatures. However, a high VI also helps prevent its viscosity from decreasing (thinning) at high temperatures.

In other words, the critical temperature as far as viscosity is concerned can be relatively low or high, depending on the oil being used…

To check out the full article visit Hydraulics & Pneumatics.

In the News: Sweetening the Deal with EcoFlow Valves

major U.S. sugar producer has several hundred pumps throughout the plant. These pumps are either using packing, which requires constant maintenance or using mechanical seals, which require a water supply to cool and flush it. In the latter instance, the water is usually either returned to a seal water tank or dumped to drain. Any water that ends up on the floor or in a drain finds its way back to process and must be evaporated (large cost) or sent to wastewater (even larger cost). Because of this, any unnecessary water flow that can be cut from the process is beneficial.

CHALLENGES

  • This plant faced several challenges prior to its adoption of EcoFlow valves:
  • The plant could not use mechanical seals on their pumps due to the large water demand and up-front expense of a closed recirculation system.
  • Packing was used in all pumps instead of double mechanical seals, causing leaks and constant maintenance.
  • Expensive seals were damaged every year due to accidental dry running.

HOW OUR ECOFLOW VALVES HELPED

ThermOmegaTech® EcoFlow valves were placed on the seal water outlet of their pumps’ double mechanical seals to control the seal water temperature…

To check out the full article visit Modern Pumping Today.

In the News: Keeping Cool for the Sake of Safety

Modern Pumping Today interviewed our Vice President of Engineering, Nick Tallos, on the role thermal relief valves play in potable water systems.

MPT: What applications are the ThermOmegaTech range of thermal relief valves designed for?

Nick Tallos: The primary application we found for one of our valves, which is used as a thermal relief valve, is for domestic water supply booster pumps—so we’re not talking about chemical or processing pumping with this application; the focus is on potable water for buildings. And in this application, we discovered that the pumps need to be sized for the maximum demand, and they have to be run to maintain pressure throughout the building. In other words, you can’t shut it off…

MPT: How would you best describe the benefits of the ThermOmegaTech range of valves? What are your customers looking for?

Nick Tallos: We’ve had customers report that idling pumps can sometimes elevate water temperatures to what we’d consider standard for hot water taps or even scalding hot. So building managers are obviously concerned about someone in their building turning on what should be a cold water tap and unexpectedly getting hot water…

MPT: How important is customer feedback to your product offerings? What do you hear from your customers that you put into your products?

Nick Tallos: We hold customer feedback at a very high level, especially during product development. Over the years, we’ve learned that the customer wish list makes a pretty good place to start whenever we’re deciding which features should be included on a valve—whether it be pipe sizing, valve size, flow rate. There are so many applications where a self-operating valve link to temperature controls prove beneficial, even separate from pump relief, that we greatly value what our customers bring to the table…

To check out the full article visit Modern Pumping Today.

Winter is Here; Protect Your Exposed Pipes

Exposed pipes can be the biggest headache for plant managers and maintenance personnel in the harsh winter months. Any sort of pump, valve, or process pipe that is exposed to the harsh effects of the Winter is susceptible to freezing and bursting. As you can imagine, this can create havoc in critical systems.

Winter is Here. Protect Your Exposed Pipes HAT/FP Freeze Protection Valve There are many ways to heat these pipes, but in extreme climates, one of the most effective methods is to apply glycol tracing. Since glycol does not freeze and doesn’t require any special handling in environments that need to be explosion-proof, it makes it an ideal solution.

Glycol has a very low freezing point which allows it to remain in the liquid phase, even in very cold temperatures. The exceptional thermal transfer characteristics also make it the obvious choice for a cost-effective heating medium.

How We Can Help.

ThermOmegaTech manufactures many valves that control the flow of, and maximize the effect of glycol through these systems. Our most popular valves for use in glycol tracing include HAT and TV/HAT.

Our valves are not reliant on electricity to operate. To regulate the flow of glycol, each of these valves contains a thermostatic element inside that modulates open or closed to maintain a constant discharge temperature.

Each of them improves system efficiency by automatically varying the rate at which glycol is pumped through the system.

The Solution for Domestic Hot Water Efficiency

For years, manual balancing valves have been the industry standard in regulating the flow of recirculating domestic hot water systems.

Particularly in large, populous commercial buildings, such as offices, hotels, and multi-dwelling housing, maintaining perfect hot water distribution was very challenging until Pennsylvania-based manufacturer ThermOmegaTech®, Inc. launched its self-operating temperature actuated CircuitSolver thermal recirculation valve (Circuit Solver) and set a new standard.

“Even people who are very knowledgeable with years of experience in the industry are impressed with what CircuitSolver can achieve,” shares Nick Tallos, vice president of engineering for ThermOmegaTech and 40-year industry veteran. “They ask, ‘where was this 20 years ago,’ and call CircuitSolver a game-changing technology.

However, ThermOmegaTech is no stranger to game-changing products. Since the company was founded by the late Fred Pirkle in 1983, it has been solving temperature control problems all over the country and the world.

“I was working with Fred before he started ThermOmegaTech,” recounts Tallos, in Warminster. “He was working as a sales representative for another company when he was offered a position in product development in Pennsylvania. A few years later, in the early 1980s, he decided to start his own company.

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Domestic Hot Water: A Better Option?

The facts are frightening – especially since the problem can be avoided.

Consider this: As many as one in 10 patients hospitalized in the U.S. contracts an infection, according to the Wall Street Journal. That means nearly 2 million patients annually are infected by a bacterium or other agents.

The end result?

The cost is nearly 100,000 deaths and $6.5 billion in overall losses.
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Domestic Hot Water: Faster, Better & Cheaper

From Green Lodging News

By Nick Tallos

“I turned on the water in the shower and waited for 10 minutes. Warm water finally started flowing, however, it never lasted more than a minute and alternated mostly with cool to cold water.”

Hotel shower hot water system

Image via Pexels.

That’s the exact quote extracted from an online review of a guest who rated a hotel in Pennsylvania on Tripadvisor.com. The reviewer gave the hotel a rating of two out of a possible five. The site is full of similar comments from guests complaining about how long it took them to get hot water when they wanted to take a shower or wash their hands.

In the hospitality industry, when a guest turns on the hot water in their room, most wait patiently for the water to run a while to the proper temperature. Guests do not like to wait too long for their hot water according to the International Hospitality Association.

In fact, they specifically address “the availability of hot water” as a factor for consideration in their quality standards and star rating systems that they set as the bar for multi-star ratings.

The cost to deliver domestic hot water to ensure customer satisfaction means the domestic hot water system must be balanced in a way that keeps the delivery time low. Until recently, that meant larger recirculating pumps, more recirculating flow, more wear and tear on your hot water system, and more cost.

Read more on Green Lodging News about domestic hot water systems.

In the News: Success Through Diversity

Magnum GURU® Freeze Protection Railroad Valve - Success Through DiversityFrom the Bucks County Courier Times Success Through Diversity

“For 30 years, Warminster’s ThermOmegaTech® has been helping to protect locomotives with the smallest pieces of equipment — valves that keep water from freezing and damaging engines.

Today, under new ownership, the valve manufacturer is growing by diversifying its product line to include everything from commercial plumbing products to regulators for barbecue grills.

The company was founded in 1982 by Fred Pirkle — a “modern-day Edison” who held numerous patents, said current CEO Jim Logue.”

ThermOmegaTech® began by providing self-powered freeze-protection valves to railroad companies. Over the years, Pirkle and ThermOmegaTech® developed dozens of valve products. But railroads remain its biggest customer, and the company boasts of a 96 percent market penetration in the industry.

But it’s growing in other industries, as well, Logue said.

ThermOmegaTech®’s aptly named BBQ Guru division — which began as a side hobby for Pirkle — is now the company’s fastest growing business, Logue said. BBQ Guru makes temperature gauges for barbecue grills, and fields an award-winning barbecue team.

“We’re a custom valve manufacturer,” Logue said. “We do valves for all sorts of uses.”

Its newest product is the Circuit Solver®, which saves water and electricity in large buildings like hotels and apartment complexes by allowing the almost instantaneous delivery of hot water. In other words, no more waiting for the shower to heat up. Therm-Omega-Tech already has about 20 projects either underway or in the pipeline that will use the valve.

Read More…

In the News: ThermOmegaTech Featured in Keystone Edge

Keystone Edge recently profiled CEO Jim Logue for their “Innovation & Job News” section. Jim discusses ThermOmegaTech’s journey into Lean Manufacturing and the growth that we’ve seen with it.

From www.keystoneedge.com:
A few years ago, when CEO Jim Logue joined ThermOmegaTech,  a Warminster valve maker, he found a solid, old-line manufacturer. Still, he recalls, the assembly shop and the machine shop were not clearly communicating, leading to inefficiencies and delays.

No more Since 2010, Therm has been “on a lean journey,” says Logue. Mentored by the Delaware Valley Industrial Resources Center, Therm has taken steps to eliminate waste in its manufacturing processes and, equally important, change the plant’s culture by sharing information and ensuring that all 60 employees understand the big picture.”

“We basically have empowered every employee to have a say in how to improve their work area, or what they see elsewhere,” says Logue. “It gives purpose to coming to work.”

Since adapting the principles of lean manufacturing, Logue says, people are working better and smarter and operations are more coordinated and efficient. The company has seen 70% growth in revenues in its top products and has grown jobs by 10%. Logue anticipates adding another three positions in the next six to 12 months.

Read more.