Renew Your Old NICD Rechargeable Batteries

Nickel cadmium or NiCd was the first type of portable rechargeable battery and in many ways is responsible for revolutionizing the use of electrical devices, particularly cordless power tools. Battery technology has advanced considerable since the first NiCd battery was introduced and many devices are now powered using lithium-based cells which produce increased voltage, have more endurance and, specifically, are not prone to suffering from power loss. However, if you have old NiCd batteries that you think are dead and no longer usable, consider trying to renew them. Using a process of deep discharge may revive your batteries and give you up to another year of use.

1. Place your old NiCd rechargeable batteries into your charging device. Though you may have given up charging your batteries, you might find they still can take a charge. Turn on the charger and allow it to charge your batteries until the charger’s “battery full” or similar light illuminates.

2. Remove the old NiCd batteries from the charger as soon as the charger indicates they are full. It’s important you start the deep discharge process immediately. Put the batteries in the device they power.

3. Turn on the device and set it to use as much energy as possible. If the device is a cordless power tool set it to run at its highest speed setting. If it’s an application driven device such as an iPod, cell phone or similar, open as many applications as you can. You need the device to use energy from the NiCd battery quickly.

4. Turn off the device and remove the NiCd batteries once it stops operating. The time it takes before it stops operating depends on the condition of the battery. Leave the battery to rest for 15 minutes.

5. Insert the NiCd battery into the device again and turn it on. You may find that despite the battery appearing to be dead moments earlier that it still has some energy. The deep discharging process is beginning to break down the nickel-based cell structure in the battery. The reason your NiCd isn’t retaining a charge for long is because the internal battery crystals have grown in size. Deep discharging breaks the crystals into tiny units; the smaller the crystals the more energy the battery can retain.

6. Leave the device running until it stops then repeat the process until you find the NiCd battery can’t power your device. You may need to do this three or four more times, but it’s worth doing.

7. Put your old NiCd batteries back on charge as soon as they are fully discharged, a process that can take a long time to complete. Leave the batteries charging until the charger indicates they are full. The next time you use your NiCd batteries you should find they have more power and last longer.

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Battery main elements impact on human health

Cadmium is an element that human not need, the body cadmium is uptaking from the external environment and then accumulation through the respiratory tract and the digestive tract after birth. The clinical manifestations of chronic poisoning is emphysema, bone changes and anemia.Japan found that some regions have the occurrence of pain patients due to long-term consumption the contaminated, high cadmium content rice and water.The main lesion is osteomalacia, The pain began lower extremity,and then throughout the body until the bedridden.

Chromate dust and chromic acid mist can cause nasal septum, part of the long-term contact patients’ symptoms include headache, weight loss, digestive disorders and gastrointestinal ulcers, mild renal injury.Carcinogenic chromium is increasingly attracting attention,ferrochrome smelting workers lung disease rate higher than that of other occupations.

Nickel usually from dietary intake, are considered to be induced lung cancer and nasal sinus cancer.Abroad have reported that nickel-induced lung cancer incidence have worked an average of 27 years.Nickel poisoning mainly caused respiratory damage,severe cases will be vague or unconscious mind,concurrent myocardial damage

Mercury is fat soluble. Through the blood-brain barrier into the central nervous system. Mercury is found in various tissues and organs, mainly in the liver, enters the body after 2 weeks, 85% – 90% of the mercury deposited in the kidneys, the main symptoms of chronic mercury poisoning is easily excited disease, tremor, stomatitis. Symptoms of mild poisoning is neurasthenic syndrome, autonomic dysfunction, and the impatience, irritability, crying, etc.when severe poisoning occurs the obvious personality changes, affective disorder, mental deterioration.
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Intake of lead, mainly through food, drink and atmosphere.U.S. study suggests that the increase in human blood lead concentrations, lead to a corresponding increase in the degree of negative impact on health.Because lead can not easily be excreted, so it affects the kidneys, liver, nervous system and blood-forming organs, increasing blood pressure (increase the risk of heart attack in the middle-aged), renal function and interference with reproductive function, and irreversible brain damage. High blood lead levels can cause behavioral problems of children, low IQ and concentration difficulties

Manganese is an essential trace element the human body, but excessive absorption can lead to poisoning. Manganese can enter through the respiratory tract,also can be entered by the digestive tract. Liver is the main accumulation organ manganese, excessive exposure manganese accumulation in the central nervous system, which discharges slower than other organs

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Energizer A76 LR44 1.5V Button Cell Battery, 6 Each


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Replaces: LR44, CR44, SR44, 357, SR44W, AG13, G13, A76, A-76, PX76, 675, 1166a, LR44H, V13GA, GP76A, L1154, RW82B, EPX76, SR44SW, 303, SR44, S303, S357, SP303, SR44SW)(six) 6 batteries Energizer brand name only in original blister pack !!!! replaces lr44 and all numbers listed in title
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Energizer LR44 1.5V Button Cell Battery 20 pack (Replaces: LR44, CR44, SR44, 357, SR44W, AG13, G13, A76, A-76, PX76, 675, 1166a, LR44H, V13GA, GP76A, L1154, RW82B, EPX76, SR44SW, 303, SR44, S303, S357, SP303, SR44SW) “Energizer Brand Name Batteries”


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Energizer LR44 1.5V Button Cell Battery 20 pack (Replaces: LR44, CR44, SR44, 357, SR44W, AG13, G13, A76, A-76, PX76, 675, 1166a, LR44H, V13GA, GP76A, L1154, RW82B, EPX76, SR44SW, 303, SR44, S303, S357, SP303, SR44SW) Energizer Brand Name Batteries20 batteries Energizer brand name only !!!! replaces lr44 and all numbers listed in title
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“BRAND NEW AND SUPER FRESH”

All about Forklift Truck Batteries

Most lift trucks in North America are equipped with batteries ranging for 12 volts to 48 volts. On the market today there are likewise forklifts that utilize 72/80 volt batteries. Electric forklifts now make use of industrial traction batteries.

Forklift batteries are sold in terms of voltage, connector location, amp-hour capacity, and physical size. The lift truck nameplate will state the exact truck voltage, the highest amp-hour capacity and the minimum battery weight. The forklift Operating Manual will also include the right battery information intended for the forklift.

There are 2 main kinds of electric forklift batteries: Flooded or Sealed. A sealed battery is likewise called “maintenance free” or VRLA and does not need the adding of water. Sealed batteries however utilize a chemical reaction to be able to maintain correct fluid level throughout the life of the battery. A flooded battery needs water to be added regularly to be able to guarantee the correct electrolyte level in the battery.

Most lift truck could accommodate various battery sizes. The battery should be chosen so as to fit inside the measurements of the battery compartment. Most battery providers can supply a battery list of appropriate sizes that are recommended for your particular lift truck.

With an electric lift truck, the battery is utilized as the truck counterweight and the lift truck capacity is dependent on the battery being a particular least weight. Adhere to the details specified on the lift truck nameplate in order to ensure you are using a battery which meets minimum weight specified.

Battery chargers need to be exactly matched to the specific battery being charged. It is necessary to ensure the charger has enough amp-hour capacity in order to charge the battery and that it is the same voltage as the battery. The charger amp-hour capacity has to be with 10 percent of the amp-hour capacity of the battery so as to guarantee the most efficient charging. Previous to starting the charging cycle, be sure the battery is first connected to the charger. Always verify the battery information like for instance the voltage, amp-hour capacity and battery weight with the information supplied on the battery nameplate.

Always make sure whenever charging a battery that the right kind of charger is being utilized. The majority of newer charging equipments could be utilized in order to safely charge all kinds of batteries and will be labeled to acknowledge all batteries. Utilizing an older charger, for example to be able to charge just flooded batteries can be unsafe if used for sealed batteries and damage to both charger and battery would happen. It is a good habit to firstly check the instruction plate on the charger to be sure it could accept the type of battery you would like to charge.

Whenever handling flooded batteries, it is important to just add the necessary water after the battery has been charged. This habit would stop the spattering of electrolyte out of the battery while it is being charged.

Information utilized for enhancing the battery’s life include: maintain the fluid levels for flooded batteries and keep all types of batteries spotless. Another rule to follow is once charging the battery to full capacity; allow it to rest for more or less an 8 hour period prior to using. Make use of an “equalizing” charge every 5th charge so as to keep all of the cells maintained at the same voltage. Do not discharge the battery below 80% of battery amp-hour capacity before recharging.

Electric forklifts can be outfitted along with various gadgets which monitor battery levels. There are sophisticated “Battery Discharge Indicators” that would disable the lifting circuit and sound an alarm to be able to notify once the battery has been discharged to a present level. There are other simple gas gauge meters available as well. Utilizing these monitoring gadgets will help prevent truck and battery damage from severely discharging the battery during use.

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Renew Your Old NICD Rechargeable Batteries

Nickel cadmium or NiCd was the first type of portable rechargeable battery and in many ways is responsible for revolutionizing the use of electrical devices, particularly cordless power tools. Battery technology has advanced considerable since the first NiCd battery was introduced and many devices are now powered using lithium-based cells which produce increased voltage, have more endurance and, specifically, are not prone to suffering from power loss. However, if you have old NiCd batteries that you think are dead and no longer usable, consider trying to renew them. Using a process of deep discharge may revive your batteries and give you up to another year of use.

1. Place your old NiCd rechargeable batteries into your charging device. Though you may have given up charging your batteries, you might find they still can take a charge. Turn on the charger and allow it to charge your batteries until the charger’s “battery full” or similar light illuminates.

2. Remove the old NiCd batteries from the charger as soon as the charger indicates they are full. It’s important you start the deep discharge process immediately. Put the batteries in the device they power.

3. Turn on the device and set it to use as much energy as possible. If the device is a cordless power tool set it to run at its highest speed setting. If it’s an application driven device such as an iPod, cell phone or similar, open as many applications as you can. You need the device to use energy from the NiCd battery quickly.

4. Turn off the device and remove the NiCd batteries once it stops operating. The time it takes before it stops operating depends on the condition of the battery. Leave the battery to rest for 15 minutes.

5. Insert the NiCd battery into the device again and turn it on. You may find that despite the battery appearing to be dead moments earlier that it still has some energy. The deep discharging process is beginning to break down the nickel-based cell structure in the battery. The reason your NiCd isn’t retaining a charge for long is because the internal battery crystals have grown in size. Deep discharging breaks the crystals into tiny units; the smaller the crystals the more energy the battery can retain.

6. Leave the device running until it stops then repeat the process until you find the NiCd battery can’t power your device. You may need to do this three or four more times, but it’s worth doing.

7. Put your old NiCd batteries back on charge as soon as they are fully discharged, a process that can take a long time to complete. Leave the batteries charging until the charger indicates they are full. The next time you use your NiCd batteries you should find they have more power and last longer.

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Discrete Analyzers in the Environmental Laboratory

Introduction

Think of your old manual Spectronic 20, or your direct reading spectrophotometer that you use in your lab. You line up your samples in a row. In front of them, you place some small sample cups or maybe even a series of cuvettes, and you pipette a known amount of sample into each cup. You then add a reagent and somehow mix the reagent and sample. You do this for each sample. You may have more reagents to add so you repeat the whole process until all reagents are added. Then you start a timer. When the timer beeps you know you have a certain “time window” to read the absorbance (or concentration) of your samples. You read by manually transferring the color-developed sample to a spectrometer cuvette, by using a peristaltic pump to transfer the sample to a flow cell already in the spectrometer, or by inserting the tube or cuvette that you used to develop the sample color in. Then, you press a button to send the reading to a printer, a computer program, or you manually record the reading onto a laboratory worksheet.

Did you shake and mix every sample exactly the same way every time? Will you mix them the same way every day? Will every analyst run them exactly the same way you have?

Is there color or turbidity in the samples? Should you zero your instrument with each sample, or only with reagent water blanks?

Is the exact time you read the final absorbance critical?

The process described is what you are automating by using a discrete analyzer. Instead of lining up samples, you are pouring aliquots into sample cups that are placed on an auto sampler tray. Instead of transferring a known amount of sample to a cuvette, the discrete analyzer does. Instead of adding reagents and mixing, the discrete analyzer does. Instead of starting a timer, the discrete analyzer does. Instead of reading the absorbance, recording the reading, and calculating a result the discrete analyzer does.

The analyzer has automated almost all the simple colorimetric methods for you. Sample volume is measured and dispensed exactly the same way, every time. Reagents are added and mixed exactly the same way every time. The timer is set and absorbance is measured exactly the same way every time. Results are calculated exactly the same way every time.

The discrete analyzer pipettes, dilutes, adds reagents, mixes, calibrates, measures, calculates, and reports all for you. You select a method by keyboard. There is no hardware to manually change, no cartridge to rinse out, no baselines to monitor, no wavelength filters to change. Sample and reagent volumes are determined by a selection in a computer program, not by the internal diameter of a peristaltic pump tube.

The discrete analyzer has done a lot for you but it cannot control nor do everything. It cannot accurately prepare the stock calibration standard for you, even though it can accurately dilute it. It cannot guarantee the standards and samples were placed on the auto sampler tray in the right order. It cannot prepare the reagents for you or guarantee they were placed in the right order; however, it can monitor their purity and remind you where they are supposed to go. It cannot make sure you’ve entered the proper sample ID for each sample position, however, it can guarantee that the result obtained for that sample position is traceable to the ID you entered. It cannot know the sample lot ID for each standard or reagent, but if you enter those ID’s into the software, it can guarantee traceability of those reagents with your sample sets.

The software and built in electronics constantly monitor and adjust lamp voltage so that absorbance readings do not drift. Drift is common in flow analyzers because the peristaltic pump tubing delivers reagents by proportion. The discrete analyzer delivers the exact amount of sample and reagent every time. These volumes do not change. The discrete analyzer has a fixed path length if the discrete analyzer does not transfer color-developed sample to another cuvette, or flow cell, for measurement. In addition, if, the discrete analyzer reads through the walls of the cuvette the calibration curve is usually more stable and or reproducible than your reagents and standards. 

Change your thoughts on calibration

Beer’s law states that the absorbance is equal to the absorbtivity times the path length times the concentration.  It seems, however, sometimes we do not believe that Beer’s law is a law. I say this because according to this law, the absorbtivity is a constant. When the path length is fixed (always the same), the path length is a constant as well making the only variable the concentration. Therefore, you prepare standards of a known concentration, measure the absorbance and determine the absorbtivity. Assuming you can prepare reagents exactly the same way every time, measure the same volume every time, and incubate your samples the same amount of time every time, there should be no reason to assume that the absorbtivity would change. If the absorbtivity does not change, then there is no reason to calibrate every day. Moreover, if the absorbtivity is not changing, you could actually be introducing error every time you calibrate because you may not be taking into account random errors that occur between analysts or even with yourself as you inadvertently vary your technique on a day-to-day basis.

As mentioned previously, daily calibration is required for continuous flow methods because flow methods proportion the reagents and sample using a peristaltic pump. Those pump tubes are changing with time changing the relative proportion of sample and reagents. Flow analyzers are still incredibly accurate, it is just you need to calibrate each time.

Calibrating consumes time. Especially accurate ones where you took great care to ensure your standards and reagents are fresh.

A manual spectrometer does not necessarily require a calibration each time. Many methods written for manual spectrometers merely say, “analyze a check standard with each sample set”. In fact, the stability of the calibration curve is the underlying concept behind direct reading spectrophotometers and filter wheel methods. For many colorimetric tests, the stability of the curve far exceeds the stability of the standards or the reagents. Some examples are nitrite and phosphate.

A discrete analyzer should not require daily calibrations and should allow us to extrapolate more the ion chromatography, gas chromatography, and manual direct reading spectrometer concept of the Continuing Calibration Verification, or CCV. As mentioned, the reason the discrete analyzer curves are stable is that the robot exactly reproduces everything every time. You cannot do this because you are not a robot, the discrete analyzer, however, is.

A manual method uses more reagent and sample volume because we, as humans, cannot work easily with small volumes. A flow system uses more reagent than a discrete analyzer because a flow instrument is continuously pumping reagent through the system.

Discrete analyzers that measure the sample absorbance within the same container that the reaction occurred generate less waste than instruments that wash the vessel, or use a flow cell. In fact, adequately rinsing a flow cell requires significant rinsing between samples making the waste volume generated essentially equivalent to that of a micro-flow Segmented Flow Analyzer, or Low Flow Flow Injection Analyzer.

The discrete analyzer uses significantly less reagent, and generates significantly less waste than manual methods. This chart illustrates an unscaled down manual method using the exact volumes described in Standard Methods. The waste generated for the manual method does not take into account washing of glassware. As mentioned earlier, an analyzer that washes cuvettes or rinses a flow cell will generate more waste than indicated here.

Eliminate the possibility of contamination, or false positives

The discrete analyzer measuring the absorbance of a color reacted sample contained in individual cuvettes. Unlike flow analysis, there is no possibility of interaction between samples and unlike flow analysis; the user can visually observe the reaction product during and after analysis.

Using a discrete analyzer, the analyst can observe the reaction during color development and after the test is complete. The analyst can remove the reaction segments and verify that dispensed volumes are repeatable, that there are no bubbles or turbidity, and that the color looks correct. A flow analyzer does not give the analyst the ability to visually examine and qualitatively guarantee the accuracy of his or her results.

A discrete analyzer dispenses, reacts, incubates, and measures all within the reaction cuvette without transferring to a flow cell. Analyzers that transfer to a flow cell are not “true” discrete analyzers, but instead, are hybrids between flow and discrete. The hybridization is done to achieve lower detection limits; however, the advantage of the individually contained reaction and absence of carryover is lost. In addition, since these analyzers require as much rinse as a flow analyzer to remove preceding samples, waste generation is as high as flow. Given this, and the increased possibility of environmental contamination or analyte loss that occurs from open-air heated reactions, you may as well have a flow analyzer.

Chemical reactions occur in individually contained segments

All discrete analyzers have reaction segments. Some analyzers do chemical reactions in a cuvette segment and then transfer the reacted sample to a flow cell. This type of analyzer is a hybrid of discrete and flow, and not a true discrete analyzer. A true discrete analyzer reacts and measures the sample within the optical cuvette. Some analyzers wash the optical cuvette between tests. Washing between tests enables more samples to be analyzed per cuvette; however, the washing cannot guarantee that there is no residual contamination that remaining after the washing process. Other discrete analyzers utilize disposable optical quality cuvettes.

Washing between tests enables more samples to be analyzed per cuvette; however, the washing cannot guarantee that there is no residual contamination not completely removed by the washing process. This residual contamination can come from preceding samples, or more likely, from the reagents used in processing the preceding samples. The built in computerized checking of optical quality cannot verify absence of chemical contamination.

Analyzers that use a flow cell still react samples in some sort of cuvette. It is the number of reaction vessels on the discrete analyzer that limit the number of tests that the discrete can run in a single walk away operation. If the discrete analyzer has 100 sample positions and 200 reaction cuvettes, then the analyzer can run 100 samples for 2 tests each. The discrete analyzer with the flow cell must rinse the flow cell between each sample, and rinse vigorously between each test. Consider that a two-channel flow analyzer can analyze 100 samples for two tests each in less than half the time as a discrete analyzer with a flow cell. Also, consider that the flow analyzer generates no more waste than the discrete analyzer with a flow cell. If the required testing is a lot of samples for one or two tests it makes more sense to use a flow analyzer.

Reagents can interfere as cross contamination between samples. Using disposable individual reaction cuvettes completely eliminates the possibility of contamination. For instance, the cadmium reduction nitrate test contains significant amounts of ammonia in the buffer reagent and phosphate in the color reagent. Using individual disposable cuvettes ensures that there is no contamination. Washing cuvettes, or using a flow cell, means you can never be sure.

Using disposable optical cuvettes is the only way you can guarantee no carryover between tests or samples. The concept is similar to use of disposable petri dishes, disposable pipette tips, and disposable hypodermic needles. The discrete analyzer easily and rapidly analyzes multiple tests on single sample solutions. Only disposable individually contained reactions ensure that there is no interaction between samples or tests.

Let the robot do your pipetting.

When you manually pipette samples you, hopefully, use a different pipette per sample. If not, you will at least rinse it in between samples, and possibly with sample prior to transferring your sample aliquot to the sample container. This is to avoid carryover between samples. A flow analyzer uses an auto sampler. The sampling probe immerses in the wash station rinsing the outside of the probe, and pulls wash solution from the station and into the analytical cartridge.

A discrete analyzer also uses a probe; however, it operates differently than flow analyzers. A discrete analyzer’s level detect mechanism ensures that the probe immerses into the sample or reagents no further than necessary to withdraw the required sample aliquot. The probe then washes itself on the outside at the wash station and pushes the sample or reagent out into the sample cuvette. Between dispenses, the probe pushes excess wash water out ensuring no carryover. In other words, unlike a flow system that only pulls sample in one direction, the sampling probe on a discrete analyzer is bidirectional pulling reagent and sample into its internal tubing only far enough to withdraw the correct volume and then dispensing it by pushing it out the other way.

The machine can think.

When doing a manual test you know if you ran out of reagent or sample. A flow analyzer does not know. A flow analyzer could end up aspirating from empty sample cups or empty reagent bottles all night long and think it is still running samples. A discrete analyzer with level detection prevents this. The level detect mechanism is a capacitance detector that senses the difference between liquid and air. The discrete software calculates the volume of reagents and samples based on the height of liquid. The software continuously monitors sample and reagent volumes and will not continue the test when it detects that reagents or samples have “run out”.

The sampling depth on a flow analyzer is usually adjustable by the user and is usually towards the bottom of the sample vial. On a discrete analyzer, the depth the probe immerses in a sample solution is a result of programming or instrument design. The depth sampled on the OI Discrete analyzer is determined by the level detect mechanism and the sample aliquot required for the test. For instance, if 200 micro liters is required the probe will immerse just below 200 micro liters as determined by the volume of the cup and the liquid level detected and withdraw a software-defined amount above 200 micro liters. In other words, the discrete analyzer samples from the top 300 micro liters of sample solution. The probe only immerses as far as it has to. This minimizes potential carryover contamination, and speeds the process. In this way dispensing and rinsing is fast and there is no sample or reagent carried to another on the sides of the probe. 

When sampling from the top of the sample cup there is a risk of loss of a volatile analyte from the top of the solution or the risk of the adsorption of an analyte from the laboratory air into the top of the solution. For instance, trace cyanide in near neutral solution can be slowly lost from the top layer of sample solution into the lab air. This is especially evident with lower concentrations such as 10 ppb.

Gain of the analyte is possible as well. Ammonia is a common laboratory contaminant. Ammonia readily adsorbs into acidified solutions. It is possible for ammonia to be “pulled” from laboratory air into the sample solution. A flow analyzer would not as readily detect this loss or gain because it samples from the bottom of the sample cup.

There are some drawbacks

A discrete analyzer reacts sample in a heated cup that is open to allow the probe to dispense samples and reagents. The heat increases reaction rates and is especially important for chemistries such as ammonia that are slow to develop color. In manual testing the reagents are added in open containers, however, the container shape can vary and the container can be capped during mixing, heating, and color reaction. When flow analyzers were first introduced one of the key advantages that gained its acceptance over manual methods was that reactions occurred enclosed within the tubing limiting its exposure to laboratory air. In this aspect, discrete analyzers are kind of a step backwards.

There are significant advantages.

Similar to holding a color developing reaction in its own container till it reaches a color maximum, discrete analyzers can also hold intermediate reactions for long periods of time without risk of carryover, dilution into a carrier reagents, or excessive dispersion. This can be especially useful in enzyme or reduction reactions where reaction rates are slow. A flow analyzer would require long delay coils resulting in very complex SFA chemistry manifolds. Often elevated temperature is used to speed reactions, but in some chemistry, there are limits to the maximum temperatures possible. Since discrete analyzer reactions are occurring in individually contained cuvettes, the time delay between reagent additions on discrete analyzers is limited only by software. This is a significant advantage over flow chemistry.

In manual methods, obviously, the operator prepares all the calibration standards from a stock solution, dilutes any QC samples from a stock solution, dilutes samples known to be over calibration prior to color development, and dilutes samples that were over calibration once he or she notices that they are. Unless you have an added auto-dilutor attached to your flow analyzer, you will still be diluting standards and over calibration samples. Auto-dilution is an integral function of a discrete analyzer. The dilutions can be preset during sample table entry if you know that the samples need to be diluted. Methods can be programmed such that they dilute every sample and standard all the time, or the instrument can be programmed so that over calibration, samples are diluted and re analyzed.

An analyst changes a manual or flow method from one to the next by memory, or by referring to the SOP. How well this particular analyst performs the procedure is dependent upon his mood, the time of day, his experience with the method, the availability of equipment, and many other unquantifiable variables. It is possible to obtain good results and bad results by the same manually performed method. A flow analyzer analyzes everything the same every time assuming it is set up the same every time. This assumption is valid with experienced flow analysis technicians; however, if the technician does not understand flow or if there are multiple users results will vary. Extensive training and documentation is necessary to guarantee that results conform to good automated lab practices.

The discrete analyzer method is selected by mouse click when scheduling analyses on the sample tray. The method conditions do not change. In fact, assuming you have accurately calibrated your method the calibration is stored within the method. This means that an untrained analyst that only knows what buttons to press is able to obtain identical results to even the most experienced analyst.

Most analytes performed in an environmental compliance laboratory cannot be bench spiked. If the analyte requires a preliminary distillation, digestion, or extraction the spiking is done prior to the preliminary sample process. I realize that many labs do not distill ammonia or Fluoride and I would argue that if you are reporting compliance testing for the clean water act you would better seriously consider changing your SOP. Other parameters that can’t be spiked are those that are too high to spike within the matrix without preliminary dilution, such as Ca, Mg, Cl, SO4, and analytes like alkalinity that just are not spiked.

This shortens the list of potential analytes for the automatic spiking function to nitrite, phosphate, Sulfide, Chromium VI, and some others. On these, I defer back to the previous slide and ask if the potential error is worth the risk for so few tests.

Summary

Benefits of discrete analyzers include decreased reagent consumption, decreased waste generated, and ease of use among other things. The most significant advantage of the discrete analyzer, however, is that it can eliminate the traditional concept of routine analysis and allow you to run samples as you receive them instead of storing them until there is enough sitting around to make a flow or IC analysis worthwhile. If you take advantage of the calibration stability of the discrete analyzer, and accurately prepare a calibration that can then be used by almost any analyst in subsequent uses an added benefit is that the results are the same regardless of who uses the machine.

Think of those short holding time samples. The phosphate, the nitrites, the chromium VI, and residual chlorine. These analytes cause the environmental lab to stop everything just to get the analysis done on time. Think of the other analytes that come in periodically, but maybe not frequently. Possibly silica, ferrous iron and sulfide. How do you guarantee these tests followed the SOP? Instead of thinking of the discrete analyzer as something to replace a flow instrument, think of it as something to supplement a flow instrument. If you have hundreds of samples for one or two tests routinely and for the same analyte you are not going to save money by switching these tests to a discrete analyzer. Where you will save money and great effort is removing unnecessary strain from the flow analyzer and your analysts by performing the non – routine or “rush” tests on a discrete analyzer. It is possible for the sample login person to analyze samples as received for almost every colorimetric test that does not require a digestion. In other words, as soon as the sample is logged in it could be immediately run for nitrite, phosphate, chromium VI, nitrate, ammonia, chloride, and sulfate. In this example, instead of putting samples in a refrigerator to be gathered for analysis at a later time, they end up being run by ice chest and by client as soon as they are received.

If everything is to run on the discrete analyzer, then collect your samples in a vial that fits on the discrete analyzer. You no longer need to transfer liquid from container A to auto sampler vial B, the sample bottle can be the auto sampler vial. Not only does this save time, but it saves shipping as well. Instead of large ice chests, you use tiny mailers.

To summarize, the true advantage of a discrete analyzer is that its built in features allow any analyst to get the same results every time. Discrete analyzers are very simple to use requiring minimal software training. Once set up for your laboratory, properly applied methods allow you to modify your daily routines and analyze samples as soon as they come in. Whether you are an environmental lab, research, process control, or municipality discrete analyzers can be used effectively in your operation. Currently, the full power of discrete analyzers is limited by tradition and by regulation. Once we start to develop methods for discrete analyzers instead of using discrete analyzers to run methods developed for flow we will be able to see greater throughput, less variability, and lower MDL.

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How to Maintain your Golf Cart’s Batteries

Serious, even dangerous threats can eventuate by improperly maintaining your golf cart’s batteries.

A lack of knowledge about basic golf cart battery maintenance can lead to all kinds of problems. Some users assume that the batteries that operate their golf carts are maintenance-free. However, the key to achieving optimum performance and long life is a solid golf cart battery maintenance program.

It is recommended that you obtain following equipment for use in golf cart battery care and maintenance:

A wrench; distilled water; a voltmeter (an instrument used for measuring the voltage between two points in an electric circuit); a hydrometer (a tool used to measure the specific gravity of the electrolyte solution); a post cleaner; some baking soda; petroleum jelly and possibly the most of all goggles and gloves.

Always wear protective clothing, acid proof gloves and goggles when handling lead acid batteries and remove all jewellery. It’s important to have lots of water and baking soda nearby as this will neutralise any acid spills from battery refilling and prevent further corrosive damage. Remember, the electrolyte is a solution of acid and water, so skin contact should be avoided and, do not smoke near batteries and never add acid to a battery.

Golf carts are typically powered by six lead-acid batteries mounted beneath the front seat.

First of all, examine the outside appearance of the batteries. You should look for cracks in the container and the top of the battery. Posts and connections should be free of dirt, fluids and corrosion. You should replace any damaged batteries.
Check that all vent caps are tight. Then clean the battery top with a cloth or brush and a solution of baking soda and water ensuring that any cleaning solution or any other foreign matter does not get inside the battery. Then rinse with clean water and dry with a clean cloth. Solvents or spray cleaners should not be used. Then clean the battery terminals and the inside of the cable clamps with a post and clamp cleaner. Reconnect the clamps to the terminals and thinly coat them with petroleum jelly. Always keep the area around the batteries clean and dry.

Water should only be added after fully charging the battery. Prior to charging, there should be enough water to cover the plates. If the battery has been discharged (partially or fully), the water level should be above the plates.

Some important things to remember are: Do not allow plates to be exposed to air and do not fill the water all the way up to the cap. Do not use water with a high mineral content. You should use only distilled or deionised water.

Check water levels in each cell of each battery weekly to ensure that the leaded plates in the battery are submerged in liquid. Don’t fill the cell all the way up — add just enough water to cover the plates.

Lastly, please follow the manufacturer’s instructions for maintaining batteries.

For additional information on golf cart batteries including how lead acid batteries work; how to use a hydrometer; changing batteries; troubleshooting golf cart batteries please visit http://www.YourGolfCartBatteries.com

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ThinkPad Laptops – Advantages, Features and Accessories

A ThinkPad laptop is a useful asset for any business to invest, due to its speed, reliability, convenience and security features. Their innovative designs offer key business solutions that enable businesses to increase productivity, while reducing overall costs of doing business simultaneously. ThinkPad laptops are great business tools for both large-scale and small business enterprises. Below are some of the key advantages of using ThinkPad laptops for your business.

Portability

ThinkPad laptops are portable, thereby allowing users to carry their work with them to any destination, which may be done while on transit. In this way, your work does not have to stop when you leave the office. ThinkPad laptops have inbuilt durability features to protect the laptop from damage while on transit, such as the shock-mounted hard drives and roll cages. Another protective feature available in select models is the Active Protection System, which is an airbag-like feature that helps to protect your hard drive from damage when it falls.

Data Protection and security

Some ThinkPad models have an integrated fingerprint reader and Password Manager, which enables users to replace hundreds of passwords with a single mouse click. In addition to this is the ThinkVantage Client Security Solution, which makes the ThinkPad laptop one of the most secure laptop brands in the market.

Moreover, ThinkPad laptops are designed to protect business data from loss through the inbuilt ThinkVantage Technologies. Such business data losses may be as a result of virus attacks or system failure. The Rescue and Recovery feature is one of the key ThinkVantage technologies which enable the business to retrieve lost data in the event of an OS failure, by simply pressing the ThinkVantage button located on the touch pad.

Reduced PC life-cycle costs

Another great feature of using the ThinkPad laptop is that the business will be able to enjoy significantly reduced PC life-cycle costs in the long run. This stems from the fact that only about 20% of the cost of owning a PC is lies its purchase price; while the remaining 80% stems from the costs incurred from support and maintenance. The great innovative ThinkVantage technologies of the ThinkPad laptop therefore help a business to significantly reduce their IT costs.

Energy efficiency

Another great advantage of the ThinkPad laptop is its energy efficiency, which makes it advantageous to use, not only for the business, but for the environment as well. This is through the inclusion of standard green features which aid in the reduction of waste, as well as power consumption. By reducing the power costs of the business, the ThinkPad laptop will indirectly, yet significantly contribute to the protection of the environment. Some of the great ThinkPad green features include the switchable graphics, fans and battery stretch features.

Innovative technology

ThinkPad laptops come with some of the latest and greatest innovative technologies and designs in the market. Some of these great new features and latest technologies are found in the ThinkPad W Series notebooks, which are a must have for any graphic designer or photographer. For example the W700 model has a second retractable 10.6″ screen, which can expand the display area by 39%. It also comes with an integrated digitizer and pen for digital media creation, CAD/CAM applications, multi-touch panel technology, the latest NVIDIA® Quadro FX®-based graphics, dedicated graphics processor and memory, X-Rite® color calibration for precise PANTONE® color matching, as well a consistently true display.

Great Accessories

ThinkPad laptops come with a world of great accessories to enhance the overall user experience. These include the Lenovo vertical PC and Monitor Stand, which allows for the combination of the desktop PC and monitor into one compact, space saving and flexible solution. This accessory helps users to optimize their workspace by holding the PC securely behind the monitor, thereby providing the perfect solution for space-constrained environments such as lobbies and retail stores.

Another must-have accessory is the Lenovo Mini Wireless Laser Mouse N10, which is an ambidextrous three-button wireless mouse with a tiny dongle. This accessory also comes with a smooth and precise laser sensor, and may be used by either left-handed or right-handed persons.

Another great ThinkPad laptop accessory is the ThinkPad and IdeaPad 90W Slim AC/DC Combo Adapter, which may power a notebook, cell phone or MP3 player. This is Lenovo’s thinnest power adapter, thereby making it very portable for use while traveling. It may be plugged into standard AC wall outlets and DC outlets found in both airplanes and automobiles.

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