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Plastics: a macro or micro problem?

Plastics: a macro or micro problem?

Plastic as a problem is no longer a new phenomenon with ever-growing focus and concern on the volume of plastic in the environment. According to Greenpeace, 12.7 million tonnes of plastic make their way to the oceans each year threatening the marine ecosystem. Paul Walker, SOCOTEC’s technical and development specialist, discusses microplastic analysis and its importance to understanding how widespread plastic is in our marine environment.…

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Managing Water Usage in the Food and Beverage Industry

Managing Water Usage in the Food and Beverage Industry

Food production requires a significant volume of water with around 25,000 litres being required to grow and produce a day’s supply of food for a family of four. In order to guarantee safe food production and limit its environmental footprint, the food and beverage industry is forced to adopt a proper water management strategy utilising advanced treatment technology to achieve water savings and zero water discharge solutions.…

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What Are The Most Common Problems Affecting Closed Water Systems?

What Are The Most Common Problems Affecting Closed Water Systems?

Closed systems, such as heating and cooling circuits, rarely fail due to corrosion and leakage; most failures are due to an accumulation of sediment causing blockages, poor heat distribution or dissipation, boiler and valve failures. These problems reduce the performance of the system, waste energy, increase maintenance costs and contribute to the early failure of plant and components. So, what kind of treatment options can be used?…

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Behind the Scenes: A Career for Principal Geologist

Behind the Scenes: A Career for Principal Geologist

Ground investigation is about delivering geotechnical information for designers to use for the construction of safe and serviceable structures, in an efficient, economic and environmentally considerate manner. As such, deriving an understanding of the geology and ground conditions - and conveying this within a technical report - is fundamental to the final stage in the overall delivery of a ground investigation. With a focus on high service delivery, the role of the principal geologist is crucial in leading the technical team, as discussed by Clare Chapman, operations director for Ground Investigation, who also introduces three members of the SOCOTEC GI team who have recently been promoted to the Principal Geologist position.…

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Storing Chemicals Safely

Storing Chemicals Safely

The storage and use of chemical products is a key feature in many day-to-day railway activities.  Even in common and well known forms such as cleaning agents, pesticides, lubricants, paints and solvents, the storing of chemicals in some capacity is highly likely. As part of a business’ duty to protect employees, there must be procedures in place for correctly using chemicals.…

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Test Gas Concentrations used under BS EN 14181

Test Gas Concentrations used under BS EN 14181

Measuring and monitoring emissions is fundamental to understanding the level of pollutants entering the air, assessing the performance of control measures and ensuring compliance with regulations. To complete emission checks, there are a number of different cylinder test gases used on operator sites. Here, Andy Tiffen, project manager for the Air & Emissions division of SOCOTEC explains the purpose and requirements for the different uses.…

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Respiratory Protective Equipment – An Essential But Misused Control Method?

Respiratory Protective Equipment – An Essential But Misused Control Method?

The HSE estimates around 12,000 deaths from lung diseases in the UK each year are caused by exposure to airborne contaminants in the workplace, with around 5.5 million employees at risk of respiratory diseases. Despite numerous guidance documents and online resources published by the HSE detailing the selection, use and maintenance of RPE, many businesses and workplaces still manage to get it wrong.…

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