Friday, December 17, 2010

Lab update for November 2010

End User Testing
• Working on paint strippers for powder coating. Waiting on weathering testing results.
• Site visit to talk to facilities manager- restarting acetone replacement project. Cleaning LED wafers.
• Referral from OTA. Using heptane, toluene and IPA to clean silicone and resins off mixing gear. Cold cleaning issue
• Want to restart old project, cold cleaning issue also. Want to meet and start after holiday.
• Ready to look at nPB on bench tops and then vapor degreaser. Want substitute. Want to start after holiday
• Pawtucket, RI testing assistance for MEK – emailed them to get the soil to start testing.
• Electronics - Cold solvent change

Small Contract Work
Ongoing or Completed
• Testing equipment for steam vapor cleaning. Evaluating range of applications for cleaning and disinfecting.
• Reviewing cleaning methods and chemicals for maid service.
• Performance Testing on floor stripper for EcoLogo certification
• Pot and pan cleaner evaluation for DfE
• All purpose, rust removal
In the Works
• All purpose, glass cleaner comparison testing – on site for testing 12-7-10
• Enzymatic cleaner manufacturer – visit on 12-3-10 to discuss testing options
• All purpose and kitchen grease cleaning
• GS 34 degreasing testing
• Rinse aid and oven cleaning testing for DfE

Database Web Tool
Answered questions using CleanerSolutions solvent replacement questions – sent links to reports and vendors in response to the following:
• Mexico: Trying to find an aqueous cleaner for stainless steel stamped parts using cutting oil. Need to degrease and clean parts so that they can be free from oil, dirt and grey residue abteined after drawing / stamping process using immersion washer machines. More commun part materials are 316 SS, 304 SS and Monel (alloy 400)
• Puerto Rico: I’m looking for a replacement for Slide Mold Cleaner Plus Degreaser 3 , this product (aerosol can – 20 oz.) is used to clean molds from injection molding operations that may contain grease, lubricant, dirt, or traces of the injected plastic (molding compound) at temperature up to 350˚F. Appreciate very much your help, I performed a search but found a list of 300 products

Disinfection Testing
Heidi, Tim and Katie have had more training in the Clinical Lab Science facility on basic microbiology techniques. Karen will be working on a write up for the SHE newsletter with input from Nancy and Jason.

Do-it-Yourself Cleaning Recipes
DIY section for CleanerSolutions site or separate site.
Met with Leslie Reichert, The Cleaning Coach, to discuss possible collaborations on DIY recipes adding performance and health and safety information.

Outreach
• Planned visit at University of Washington to discus field testing partnership and HPCP testing in January.
• Participated in New England Surface Finishing conference in November. Met someone using TCE in a dry cleaning type machine for cleaning. Was invited to go see the operation
• Participated at ISSA and IEHA conferences in November
• Spoke at a foreman/supervisor meeting in Attleboro on the 21st. The organizer was very interested in the CleanerSolutions database. Interested in other collaboration with TURI. They are interested in supply chain work, how to get all the pieces of the puzzle talking to make low and no voc paints that work.
• Manned table with OTA at first annual Amiccon conference in Springfield. Connected with chambers of commerce and some business magazines from the area. Thoughts are to write short articles on TURI or projects to get our name out there.
• Speaking at Fitchburg NCMBEN event at request of OTA. Discussing cold solvent cleaning options
• Participated in conference call for Healthy Hospital Initiative – Health Care without harm Green Cleaning project
• Started fact/tip sheet on “greening your facility”

TURI Projects
• University Research project – meeting on Dec 2 for status of surfactant project
• Industry matching grants program – waiting for environmental/weathering testing.
• Helping with TCE implementation plan
• Dry Cleaning Assistance –Talking to Kreussler about chemical in their new dry cleaning solvent. Trying to get information. Looking to do alternative assessment with a few tools on the main solvent classes. Think it would be great to see how this new process would compare with other replacements. Could use Green Screen, P2OASys and others.
• TURI Web redesign

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Equipment evaluation options added to IEHA's High Performance Cleaning Product testing program

IEHA's High Performance Cleaning Product testing program in collaboration with the University of Massachusetts Lowell TURI Laboratory is expanding to include equipment and non-chemical process testing. According to Beth Risinger, CEO and executive director of IEHA: "The IEHA Board of Directors has received several requests to evaluate the performance of equipment and processes in addition to chemical cleaning solutions, and after review, IEHA has agreed to develop a supplemental equipment testing program for hard surfaces that will augment the current HPCP test protocols." The Toxics Use Reduction Institute Laboratory that has been at the forefront of testing to find high-performance cleaning alternatives to toxic chemistries will conduct the equipment testing

Friday, November 5, 2010

Lab update for October 2010

End User Testing
Site visit to LED manufacturing company 10-28-10
Contacted by company in Pawtucket, RI via EPA about testing assistance for MEK

Small Contract Work
Ongoing or Completed
2 chemical manufacturers – 10 trials, 3 cleaning equipment companies – 5 trials
• Testing equipment for steam vapor cleaning. Evaluating range of applications for cleaning and disinfecting.
• Waiting for feedback on dry mop and vacuum cleaning.
In the Works
• Hard floor cleaning testing with the potential for future collaboration to develop official testing standard.
• Performance testing on floor stripper for EcoLogo certification
• GS 34 Testing project
• Pot and pan cleaning testing
• ASTM D4488, TURI all purpose and DCC-09 testing

Database Web Tool
• DIY conversations with IEHA may influence development of new end user interface for CleanerSolutions site.
• Worked on structure for the behind the scenes database

Answered questions using CleanerSolutions solvent replacement questions – sent links to reports and vendors in response to the following:
• Hong Kong: For acetone replacement for our washing rooms-used for dissolution of the ink of markers and the organic residues (i.e. dyes, PCP, pesticides, fatty acid and etc
• South Africa: Investigating alternatives to PCE and TCE as vapor degreasing agents for removing rolling lubricant from aluminum plates.

Disinfection Testing
Heidi, Tim and Katie have had more training in the Clinical Lab Science facility on basic microbiology techniques. Karen will be working on a write up for the SHE

Do-it-Yourself Cleaning Recipes
Worked with Joy on putting together tip sheet for DIY cleaning recipes.
Planning to have monthly update on website for most recent testing of recipes.

Outreach
• Met with Karen to develop updated lab brochure - equipment testing insert
• Planned visit at University of Washington to discus field testing partnership and HPCP testing in January
• Scheduled to participate at NESF conference in November
• Scheduled to participate at ISSA and IEHA conferences in November
• Heidi spoke at a foreman/supervisor meeting in Attleboro in place of EPA on the 21st
• Heidi speaking at coatings meeting with OTA on the 28th
• Continuing education conference session for Nov 3
• Speaking Dec 1st at Business Environmental Network meeting discussing cold solvent cleaning options and how the lab can help companies find the right alternative

TURI Projects
• Providing services TURI Community grant recipients focused on green cleaning – toilet bowl cleaner focus. Other DIY testing for handout for Community program
• Met with UML faculty member to revisit his database proposal and to move project ahead without funding.
• Industry matching grants program
• Continuing Education conference session
• Helping with TCE implementation plan
• Dry Cleaning Assistance
• TURI Web redesign

Green Organization Tips For More Productivity, Less Stress

Check out these eight green organizing ideas (especially number 3 on green cleaning) adapted from or inspired by Lorie's Lorie Marrero, author of “The Clutter Diet: The Skinny on Organizing Your Home and Taking Control of Your Life.”

Friday, October 29, 2010

DIY Cleaning Recipe Tip Sheet

Check out TURI's recently completed tip sheet for 12 Do-It-Yourself Cleaning recipes, complete with test results.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Lab update for September 2010

End User Testing
1 company, 1 trial – metal working company
Site visits – 2; Metal sign manufacturer, Gear Manufacturer
Re engaged with Gear Mfr to work on cold solvent regulations and how to switch them to aqueous.

Small Contract Work
Ongoing or Completed
2 chemical manufacturers – 9 trials, 2 cleaning equipment companies – 3 trials
• Completed testing for sustainable solvent testing. Evaluated all purpose and graffiti removal capabilities.
• Completed testing for household cleaning product line and product labeling and MSDS reviews.
• Completed hard floor cleaning equipment project.
• Received equipment for steam vapor cleaning. Will evaluate range of applications for cleaning and disinfecting.
• Established testing methodology to compare dry mop and vacuum cleaning
In the Works
• Working on proposal for reviewing cleaning methods of a maid service
• Scheduling visit for company to discuss hard floor cleaning testing for their equipment – possibly 10-19-10.
• Second round of aerosol testing – engine cleaners
• Outdoor all purpose testing
• All purpose, household grease, oil and grease cleaner, road salt

Database Web Tool
DIY conversations with IEHA may influence development of new end user interface for CleanerSolutions site.

Disinfection Testing
Heidi, Tim and Katie have had some training in the Clinical Lab Science facility on basic microbiology techniques. Dr. Goodyear and Jason have discussed the testing proposal and will be working on the specifics. Karen will be working on a write up for the SHE newsletter with input from Nancy and Jason.

Do-it-Yourself Cleaning Recipes
The Lab met with IEHA members and Liz Goldsmith to discuss revamping the DIY pages on the TURI.org site. They are putting together a scope of services for the end of October.
Student testing of recipes picking back up.

Formulations
Completed testing for sustainable solvents.
Review of household product line formulations.

Hands-on workshop
Working on IEHA-TURI High Performance Cleaning Product training webinar that will be held after ISSA show in November.
Met with Karen to discuss hosting a Massachusetts vendor open house at the TURI Lab. May have end users (such as maid services) attend to see what is available from local vendors.
Discussion with EPA about services for Connecticut companies.

Mobile Lab
May have connection with IEHA and field testing integration with lab performance testing.

Outreach
• Presented at WPI for Air Quality Management class in chemical engineering department.
Article in Journal of Cleaner Production completed editing.
• Chapter in Handbook for Critical Cleaning in final stages of editing/proofing
• Met with Karen to develop updated lab brochure
• Conference call with IEHA, University of Washington to discus field testing partnership and HPCP testing – possible visit to UWashington in January
• Scheduled to participate at NESF conference in November
• Scheduled to participate at ISSA and IEHA conferences in November
• Heidi went to Green Jobs fair in Marlborough Oct 1st
• Heidi and Tim speaking at a meeting in Attleboro for Linda Darveau on the 21st
• Heidi speaking at coatings meeting with OTA on the 28th

State-of-the-Art Facility
Chemical storage cabinets received and old cabinets removed.
Lab reorganized for better flow and tracking of ongoing projects.

TURI Projects
• Providing services TURI Community grant recipients focused on green cleaning.
• Reviewed Industry Research proposals. Input for several related to Lab. Attended one kick off meeting. Have touched base with database project to revisit this proposal.
Industry matching grants program - sign mfr
Continuing Education conference session
• Helping with TCE implementation plan

Friday, August 27, 2010

IEHA and UMass Lowell TURI Lab Announce Color and Gloss Measurement Technology as Part of the HPCP Testing Program

The International Executive Housekeepers Association (IEHA) and the University of Massachusetts Lowell TURI lab have announced that performance analysis during the IEHA/TURI High Performance Cleaning Product (HPCP) testing program will be enhanced through use of the BYK-Gardner Spectro-Guide to measure the color and gloss of surfaces before and after cleaning.
Read more

Monday, August 2, 2010

DIY Carpet Stain Cleaner Video

Recent series of videos for carpet cleaning. Here is Heidi talking about do-it-yourself cleaners:

Friday, July 23, 2010

Proposed Projects for TURI Lab in 2011

Proposed Projects of the TURI Lab for FY 2011
Project Detail: End User Testing
Brief Description: Continue to provide testing services to end users in MA. Establish methodology for providing consistent services to New England
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Provide testing services to end users 10 end users
Goal 2 Improve on-site assistance program
Goal 3 Create Green Facility Cleaning – fact sheet

Project Detail: Small Contract Work
Brief Description: Conduct R&D testing for new products or other cleaning related applications.
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Provide testing services to 10 vendors
Goal 2 Identify industry trade group for non-janitorial products
Goal 3 Identify and contact other MA based manufacturers of cleaning products for testing services/database listing


Project Detail: Database Web Tool
Brief Description: Continue to expand database features. Use the search log to focus student testing. P2OASys population and on-line version
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Create and pilot Janitorial/household interface
Goal 2 Populate products in CleanerSolutions with P2OASys data

Project Detail: Disinfection Testing
Brief Description: Establish testing program for “safer” disinfection chemicals and practices
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Work with SHE Clinical Science lab to pilot "green" disinfection testing
Goal 2 Create fee-for-service infrastructure

Project Detail: Do-it-Yourself Cleaning Recipes
Brief Description: Focus on providing test results in household user friendly format. Test most common recipes.
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Complete existing formulation testing
Goal 2 updating layout of DIY turi.org pages
Goal 3 DIY Cleaners demonstration - hands-on workshop demo

Project Detail: Formulations
Brief Description: Investigate possible new solvents for cleaning applications - aerosol substitutes, green/sustainable solvents, green vapor degreaser
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Generate a list of ingredients for possible formulations
Goal 2 Formulate basic "green" products and test performance

Project Detail: Hands-on workshop
Brief Description: Target janitorial service providers for on-site workshop. Duplicate RI workshop and assistance with other states regarding TCE – partner with EPA
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Target janitorial service providers - DIY recipes
Goal 2 Hold an open house for MA cleaning product manufacturers
Goal 3 Hold off-site workshop and provide assistance to companies out of state (Connecticut)

Project Detail: Mobile Lab
Brief Description: Determine ways to acquire and outfit mobile surface cleaning lab.
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Identify alternative sources of financial support
Goal 2 Expand capabilities to include outreach and training

Project Detail: Outreach
Brief Description: Promoting services and success of laboratory.
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Create case study on Green Facility cleaning
Goal 2 Create case study for high hazard replacement project
Goal 3 Attend and present on testing program with IEHA at ISSA

Project Detail: State-of-the-Art Facility
Brief Description: To ensure the lab is still providing relevant testing expertise.
GOALS or OBJECTIVES
Goal 1 Verify current vendor information
Goal 2 Identify and acquire new cleaning product/equipment
Goal 3 Replace, upgrade and expand coupon inventory

Lab update for Summer 2010

Project Summaries completed from July 1, 2009 through June 30, 2010

Project
End User Testing

Brief Description
Conduct process specific testing for both industrial and janitorial testing as requested by companies

Summary
Four end user cleaning projects took place with seventeen cleaning trials. Multiple site visits were made to assist in the implementation of lab recommendations.


Project
Small Contract Work
Brief Description
Conduct R&D testing for new products or other cleaning related applications.
Summary
Ten testing contracts were conducted with 56 trials run. Most projects focused on green certification testing. Two formulation projects were run and one equipment evaluation was started at the end of the fiscal year.

Project
Database Web Tool
Brief Description
Continue to expand database features. Use the search log to focus student testing. P2OASys population and on-line version
Summary
Minimal updates were conducted for the web database. No new features were added during the year. There were more than 29,000 searches conducted during the past year. Additional health and safety data was gathered for a handful of products as part of a pilot project with the P2OASys tool.

Project
Do-it-Yourself Cleaning Recipes
Brief Description
Continue to evaluate performance of DIY cleaning recipes. Investigate possible lab created formulations based on health, safety and performance
Summary
Work study student conducted some testing of the formulations listed on the TURI DIY website pages. Data has not been entered into testing base or posted on website.

Project
Hands-on workshop
Brief Description
Incorporate lab workshop into possible course for UML WED or continuing education
Summary
Some of the lab's testing methodologies and EHS screening were introduced to the TUR course offered at UML. In addition the same topics were preseneted during the professional TUR course offered by TURI.

Project
Outreach
Brief Description
Promoting services and success of laboratory.
Summary
Several outreach venues were undertaken. A chapter in Handbook for Critical Cleaning was completed (available January 28, 2011), a submission was accepted in the Journal of Cleaner Production focusing on the implementation efforts of the lab in RI. Monthly posting to blog and daily microblogging via Twitter. A Facebook page was started for the lab. Several press releases in partnership with IEHA. Participated in the 20th TURA events during the year.

Project
State-of-the-Art Facility
Brief Description
To ensure the lab is still providing relevant testing expertise.
Summary
We were able to add Gloss/Color meter from BYK; Dino Lite digital microscope; Hygiena System Sure Plus for ATP measurement

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Lab update for May 2010

Green Cleaning Testing
Site Visits
Toluene replacement – waiting to get paint prep cleaner from vendor. Also sent them info on acetone replacement solvent and they ordered a sample. Waiting on adhesion testing results on new solvent.
Tool & Die –In contact with vendor and company - Have new solvent to try, an acetone replacement product.
Bank – Sent some lists of products they use in their facility. Said they have all MSDS’s. They are going to schedule a meeting with vendors. Will give support and guidance when needed.

New & Ongoing End User Testing Projects
Wax removal from glass –First round of testing done. nPB worked for them. Will also be looking at a few other solvents, dibasic esters and new acetone replacement solvent.
Plating company– They are working with DEP to find a solvent that is ok for cold solvent regs. Lab is working on this also and looking at the EH&S profile of the alternatives. They are sending parts for us to clean here with now acetone replacement solvent.
CafĂ© – Wants to use green cleaners in store. Sent list of products they use. Will work on finding suitable replacements and connect with some vendors.
Cable company – pulled list of cleaners to try on two projects. Testing has started. They want to clean cable and a faster clean for PVC

Vendor Product Testing

The lab has been working with manufacturers of janitorial/household cleaners. Testing has been conducted to help these products get Green Seal and/or EPA DfE certification/recognition. Areas of testing included this month: all purpose, bathroom, glass, manual/automatic dishwashing.

One project for dishwashing (manual and automatic) that is wrapping up.

Testing microfiber/squeegee cleaning process using ATP measurements – compared paper towel of various quality

Formulation project - Alternative solvent testing for all purpose cleaning (Dipropylene glycol methyl ether) and graffiti removal (Dibasic esters) – have UML approval of NDA – waiting on materials to be sent

Formulation project – replacing surfactant in existing formulation in order to pass Green Seal EHS. Test resulting formulation for performance – completed formulations and started baseline testing

Overall, the lab has worked with 13 companies since July 2009 and conducted 60 trials.

Disinfection Testing Partnership within UML SHE
The partnership will start out by looking at how to compare the ATP measurement with traditional analytical methods for biological evaluations.
Student capstone project completed
Lab has done some ATP testing
Will check in with SHE Lab about testing fees and structures
Piloting products – Vital Oxide, Activeion, Steam Cleaner
Working on pricing for initial project
Partnering with IEHA
Laying ground work for future disinfection projects

Outreach
IEHA-TURI partnership revisions and improvements
Chapter in Handbook for Critical Cleaning 2nd edition coming out in some time this year. Chapter focuses on the lab’s technical assistance program. Only one complimentary copy
CE Conference – Edited and sent answers to questions out of CE conference to participants. Many happy to hear from us and have follow up.

Carpet cleaning video with IEHA - editing should be done in June

Attended EASTEC conference

Attended NEFA sponsored wet cleaning seminar and class on May 15th in Rochester NH. Great technical class on fibers and fabrics with hands on work after.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Housekeeping Channel Professional Edition

HC Pro

Launched on May 26th, 2010. HC Pro provides a bridge for consumers who want to turn “Pro”, and access for professionals who want to grow their expertise and become certified through credible bodies such as the International Executive Housekeepers Association (IEHA), the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI), ISSA-CIMS, Cleaning Management Institute (CMI) and others.

Visit Housekeeping Channel Professional Edition (HC Pro)

HC Pro contains abstracts and excerpts from IEHA's educational curriculum, information on IEHA Certification Programs and on topics such as Integrated Cleaning and Measurement (ICM), Team Cleaning, Day Cleaning, Green Cleaning, Cleaning Science, Systems Thinking, and other best practices. Where appropriate, it will link to corresponding content on IEHA.org.

See the video tab for TURI Lab video.

Monday, May 24, 2010

TURI Funding for FY 2011

The Massachusetts Senate Ways and Means FY2011 budget proposal was released on Wednesday, and we have the following update. The Senate budget does not follow the Governor and House Ways and Means approach for funding the TURA program agencies. The Governor and House had included appropriations for DEP, OTA and TURI out of retained revenue from TURA fees, all under the DEP TURA line item. This approach makes it clear that TURA fees paid by firms will go to program services.
In contrast, the Senate Ways and Means proposal reverted to the language adopted last year in the FY2010 conference committee budget. It rolls up TURI into the UMass line item as an earmark with no specific funding mentioned. (OTA and DEP are funded with their traditional line items - although OTA is funded at a very low amount.) UMass made it clear last year that given a reduced budget and no specific line item for TURI, their priority needed to be on students. For FY10, UMass arranged to use one-time education stimulus funds for the Institute. For FY11, rolling TURI into the UMass line item makes TURI’s future uncertain once again.
Senator Eldridge has filed an amendment to the Senate Budget to adopt the House and Governor's approach of retained revenue at DEP to fund all 3 TURA agencies. It is Amendment #249: Toxics Use Reduction Institute. Amendments will be voted on during the week of May 24th.

Stayed tuned for more details.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Lab update of activities for April 2010

Green Cleaning Testing
Product Performance Testing
Continue to provide testing for Green Seal and EPA DfE certification projects.
• There is one project for dishwashing (manual and automatic) that is started in early April and should be completed in the middle of May
• Testing for All Purpose GS 37 and degreasing GS 34 – to completed in April - Very successful for both applications
• Testing microfiber/squeegee cleaning process using ATP measurements – should be wrapping up by the end of May
• Formulation project - Alternative solvent testing for all purpose cleaning (Dipropylene glycol methyl ether) and graffiti removal (Dibasic esters). Work should begin in middle of May
• Formulation project - working on finding replacement surfactant for all purpose cleaner.

Site Visits
Toluene replacement: Working on more adhesion tests. Investigating product they heard of from another shop - hydrocarbon based. identifying some leads on paint prep cleaners and will get those to them and they can try them and do some more testing.

Tool & Die: TCE to nPB and aqueous lines. Company identified some cleaners they thought could help them with their cold solvent regulation needs

Acetone reduction: company uses over 12,000 pounds. They are getting parts together to send to the lab to evaluate alternatives

Cable cleaning project: Went and saw their new PVC softening and cleaning operation. Going to look at two options, repainting the cable so that the multi-colored lines are no longer on it or remove the paint. Worried about VOCs with painting and cleaning.

Green Facility - Banking: The facility manager was open to working with the TURI Lab on greening the facility. Going to start with getting an inventory of all the cleaners they use. Also talked about office equipment, flooring, paint and other things that could affect indoor air quality. He mentioned they have a consulting firm in looking at their energy use also. He did mention they are thinking of looking at trying for LEED for existing building designation.

New End User Testing Projects
Biomedical Devices manufacturer: TCE User (>1000 lbs) to remove wax from glass and they have 3 degreasers - one large and two small. They may be going to a new cutting system that will use DI water as a lubricant and can cut the glass piece by piece so there will be no oil or wax to clean. This is a big capital investment so they are not sure when they can do that. In the mean time, the lab will start testing chemistry in May.

Plating: Contacted the TURI Lab to say that they are looking at D Limonene based cleaners. Going to help them look at the cleaners they are looking at and help them find the most cost effective and safest product. Working to help them meet the cold solvent regulations.

Overall, the lab has worked with 10 companies since July and conducted 55 trials

Database
Received two of three database reviews for Journal of Cleaner Production.

Outreach
We have been working on IEHA-TURI partnership revisions and improvements - better detailing what the program is about. Latest press release

Disinfection Testing Partnership within UML SHE
Plans are coming together to begin offering disinfection and sanitization testing for "greener" products.
o Working on pricing for initial project
o Laying ground work for future disinfection projects
o Student capstone project completed.
o Pilot project should be under way in June

TURA Continuing Education Conference
Session took questions on cold solvent cleaning and had DEP answer them.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Lab update of activities for March 2010

Green Cleaning Testing
Product Performance Testing
The lab has been working with four manufacturers of janitorial/household cleaners. Testing has been conducted to help these products get Green Seal and/or EPA DfE certification/recognition. Areas of testing included this month: all purpose, bathroom, glass, manual/automatic dishwashing, carpet stain cleaning, floor finish durability.
• There is one project for dishwashing (manual and automatic) that is starting the first week of April.
• Testing for All Purpose GS 37 and degreasing GS 34 – to start in April
• Testing microfiber/squeegee cleaning process using ATP measurements – to continue in April
• Formulation project - Alternative solvent testing for all purpose cleaning (Dipropylene glycol methyl ether) and graffiti removal (Dibasic esters)
• Activated water testing – follow up work to earlier project

Site Visits
The toluene replacement is being piloted on site for one of the four products identified by the lab. They are working on adhesion control. Have dropped off 3 samples. They are testing for adhesion. Also researching product they asked me about and have reached out to vendors for more options.

TCE replacement – visit to look at passivation line, talk about cold solvent regs & any other low hanging fruit & to start case study on their switch to nPB (25% reduction in chemical useage and haz waste). Going end of week

Plating company – arranged for visit in late April - need to get out of nPB to meet new cold cleaning regulations

Acetone reduction in cleaning process. Use over 12,000 lbs. Visit middle of April

Database
Updated testing data for March.
Have requested database reviews from three people. Reviews may be used for Journal of Cleaner Production. These also will be incorporated onto database and blog as well. Stay tuned.

Outreach
Chapter in Handbook for Critical Cleaning 2nd edition coming out in April/May. Chapter focuses on the lab’s technical assistance program.

Article in Executive Housekeeping Today "Measuring Green Cleaning" for Cleaning and Maintenance Magazine came out in April.

Website – Beginning DIY page review. Will set up meeting to discuss it after CE conference. Idea is to look at website as a whole for technical data as well as consumer usefulness. Want to add more recipes, do more testing etc.
• New Lab banner ad on Healthy Home Institute, Housekeeping Channel sites

Carpet Stain DIY Cleaning
– Heidi hit the road and went to Tallahassee. Spent four days working on carpet samples, rehearsing and filming segments on carpet cleaning with DIY recipes as well as CRI approved products. Partnered with HHI/HC.

CE Conference – Heidi in charge of session on cold solvent regulations with Azin Kavian from MA DEP. Will talk about regulation, what Lab & OTA can offer and show some alternatives

Disinfection Testing Partnership within UML SHE
The partnership will start out by looking at how to compare the ATP measurement with traditional analytical methods for biological evaluations. Lab will provide some materials, student time and staff time (Heidi) to help get testing started.
• Student capstone project moving ahead.
• Lab has done some ATP testing (see microfiber/squeegee testing above).

Friday, April 2, 2010

Executive Housekeeping Today Articles

Check out the two articles in the International Executive Housekeepers Association's April edition of Executive Housekeeping Today for two articles on the TURI Lab's cleaning program.

Friday, March 12, 2010

TURA 20th Anniversary Leader

M.D. Stetson Recognized for Environmental Leadership
Mass.-made products improve public health in schools, universities and municipalities

LOWELL, Mass. – Fifteen years ahead of the “green” revolution, a small company in Randolph, Mass., M.D. Stetson, re-formulated a line of janitorial cleaning products without hazardous chemicals.
Today, the Company that employs 45 people is one of 17 Massachusetts companies being recognized by legislators and the Toxics Use Reduction Act (TURA) Program as a “TURA 20th Anniversary Leader.” The awards and facility tours are intended to showcase environmental accomplishments—use of safer materials, waste reductions and energy savings—since the Toxics Use Reduction Act was enacted in 1989.
“We selected M.D. Stetson for its foresight and dedication in supplying public schools, universities and municipalities with green cleaning solutions way ahead of the spike in awareness of green products,” said Jason Marshall, laboratory director of the Toxics Use Reduction Institute at UMass Lowell, who provided the third party performance testing of M.D. Stetson’s cleaning products. “The company was proactive in developing the market, asking customers to try the safer products while still supplying the traditional products. Changing the mindset of customers demonstrates the depth of the company’s leadership.”
The changes made by M.D. Stetson have been cost neutral, while providing many positive health and environmental impacts and, often, better performance. Since 1993, the company has reduced its use of glycol ethers from 176,000 to 75,000 lbs. and expects to eliminate the use of the solvents within the next few years. According to the EPA, short-term exposure to high levels of glycol ethers in humans results in narcosis, pulmonary edema, and severe liver and kidney damage. Long-term exposure may result in neurological and blood effects, including fatigue, nausea, tremor, and anemia.
“I am honored to accept this award and recognition on behalf of my employees and customers,” said president of M.D. Stetson Michael Glass. “I’ve always been proud of our company for doing what’s right and manufacturing and selling our products here in Massachusetts. Eighty percent of American jobs are with small businesses like ours.”

For a full schedule of company tours, visit the TURI website.

Lab update of activities for February 2010

Green Cleaning Testing
Site Visits
Toluene replacement piloted
The company was visited last week and a walk-through of the process was conducted. Talked to the managers of the project about adhesion testing results which resulted in some tests that they were going to run and have those parts tested for adhesion to see where the issue is with the cleaning. Plans were made to drop off samples of one other aqueous cleaner as well as an Activeion unit for them to try this week and continue to work on the substitution.

Scheduled visit with cable manufacturing company
We will get to see the new PVC cleaning system in action.
There will be a discussion about another project they want the lab to work on.
The idea of creating a case study with them and their other facility about moving from mechanical cleaning to chemical and how it went over all.

Site visit being scheduled with a tool manufacturer
The visit will focus on their switch from TCE to nPB and to talk about the new Massachusetts cold solvent regulations and to get them in compliance. We will be talking about working on a case study of their decrease in chemical use and waste disposal after switching to nPB. They are down 25% in their chemical use. They are also interested in any other TUR ideas they can work on. Going to talk to them about moving some of their vapor degreasing to aqueous for the less geometric parts.

Product Performance Testing
The lab has been working with three manufacturers of janitorial/household cleaners. Testing has been conducted to help these products get Green Seal and/or EPA DfE certification/recognition. Areas of testing included this month: all purpose, bathroom, glass, manual dishwashing, carpet stain cleaning, floor finish durability. Overall, the lab has worked with 8 companies since July and conducted 40 trials (no change from last month as many of the projects are gathering materials for testing discussed in Jan and Feb).

Participated in call with EPA DfE Safer Labeling program to talk about what lab does for performance testing. Lab will be working on helping the DfE program to improve wording used in their methodology.

Contacted ASTM to participate in the development of new cleaning standard for kitchen cleaning – replacing hard surface/wall cleaning standard that was dropped by ASTM.

Email discussion with Green Seal about work practices of the lab and test methods utilized for their cleaning standards.

Database

Updated testing data for January and February.
Added resource links to ToxServices for DfE program on both the TURI Lab page and CleanerSolutions database.

Outreach

Working on the 20th anniversary tour stop at MD Stetson on March 15. See next post for more details.

Contacted by a couple of companies to help with Earth day celebrations. Investing which will be best bang for the buck for the lab and TURI.

Status of How Effective Are ‘Green’ Cleaners?
The partnership to promote the work that the lab does in testing safer products:
Article "Measuring Green Cleaning" for Cleaning and Maintenance Magazine.
First High Performance Cleaning Product column in Executive Housekeeping Today (IEHA) about Activeion in April.
Press release from IEHA on TURI cleaning methods: ISSA and CMM

Disinfection Testing Partnership within UML SHE
Nancy Goodyear in Clinical Science labs on the UML campus met with TURI Lab and Dr. Quinn to discuss possible collaboration. The meeting resulted in a strong interest from Nancy. The partnership will start out by looking at how to compare the ATP measurement with traditional analytical methods for biological evaluations.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Lab update of activities for January 2010

Green Cleaning Testing
Site Visits
The toluene replacement is being piloted on site for one of the four products identified by the lab. They are working on adhesion control. There are plans in the works for a return visit to assist on the project.

An additional site visit is being coordinated for next month for the cable cleaning project.

The lab has been working with three manufacturers of janitorial/household cleaners. Testing has been conducted to help these products get Green Seal and/or EPA DfE certification/recognition. Areas of testing included this month: all purpose, bathroom, glass, manual dishwashing, carpet stain cleaning, floor finish durability.

Overall, the lab has worked with 8 companies since July and conducted 40 trials.

Database
The plan to link the products with the various cleaning standards or certifications has been completed internally but there has been no work done on making these links “live”. Furthermore, there are still plans to create a separate interface for janitorial products.

Outreach
The lab is working on a couple of articles looking at how well green cleaners really work. The paper will be based on the testing program that the lab uses to assess products.

Status of How Effective Are ‘Green’ Cleaners?
The IEHA/TURI Partnership has changed direction and will not be recognizing high performing products using a formal logo for use on products or product packaging. However, the partnership will still promote the work that the lab does in testing safer products.

As part of the strategy to promote the IEHA/TURI Program industry-wide, an article on why testing for performance is important will be run in the Cleaning and Maintenance Management magazine. In addition, as the first installment of a regular column in Executive Housekeeping Today highlighting High Performance Cleaning Products (HPCP). This will provide solid science-based information to the IEHA members.

Disinfection Testing Partnership within UML School of Health and Environment (SHE)
The project has not been laid to rest just yet. A new connection with the SHE is being investigated. The Dean of SHE has expressed an interest in the project and will try to assist in getting a partner. Dr. Quinn from Work Environment also is looking into other partner. In the meantime the lab is starting a preliminary study on the use of an ATP measurement device donated to the lab. Three students (2 from TURI lab and 1 WE capstone program) are ready to start working on the project.