Improving Gas Detection on Mine SitesMon, 10/21/2013 - 10:39
Mining operations inevitably entail the use and release of different types of gases that pose different dangers, from posing a health risk to being explosive. Over time, technology has improved the methods that mining companies may employ, in the first instance to prevent harmful gases from escaping into the atmosphere, and in the second instance to raise the alarm when they do. “Mining companies are very concerned about potential leaks of acid liquids and gases, and strive to maintain normal levels of oxygen, as well as an uncontaminated environment, so that their people can work safely,” says Ernesto Limón Escalante, Owner of Lemon Analyzers
The company was started in 2009 with the aim of providing gas measurement solutions to customers in the mining industry. Limón Escalante, the company’s founder, had previously worked in the area of gas measurement in the mining industry, which had provided him with a good understanding of the specific conditions under which mines are operated and the dangers that mining companies face. This gave him idea of solutions his future customers would require, which have for the most part consisted of emissions control and environmental monitoring procedures, which according to Limón Escalante is a part of the industry that still remains a niche market. He expresses surprise that there are not many companies working in this area yet, particularly in Sonora where the mining industry is so developed, and thus the demand for these sorts of safety solutions is much bigger. “I think we are one of the few companies in Sonora that is offering solutions like these. Other companies just do not want to take a three hour flight, then drive even further to get to the mine site,” says Limón Escalante, who believes that his company’s location, ability and readiness to take on such logistical challenges has been one of the keys to its success.
Because of the severity of the harm that poisonous gases can do to both mining operations and the lives of miners, taking measures to detect and fix gas leaks is an extremely important precaution for mining companies to take. Limón Escalante says that sulfuric gas, which can be life threatening, is the most dangerous, though hydrogen sulfide is the most common cause of accidents inside mines. When the workers inhale it, usually unknowingly, it can have serious health implications. The company also provides equipment that can detect other dangerous gases in mines, such as methane and nitrogen. “We not only offer gas analyzers, but we also have all of the instrumentation for the field. We are the main distributors of Watlow Electric, at first just in Sonora but now also in the states of Chihuahua and Sinaloa. With the equipment we provide we fix the problems that can emerge as a result of fluid corrosion or erosion inside a mine. In the case of an emergency, clients also call on us to perform a reversal of toxicity in the air,” explains Limón Escalante. “We have a range of products for the specific problems found in mines. In collaboration with Greyline Instruments we are introducing the only flow meter in the world, for measurements in non-full pipes.” Whilst the company has typically focused on gas analyzers, flow, and protection systems, it is now increasingly focused on growth. “We are not only working with mines, but we are also doing business in every industry with needs that match the services we provide.”
Lemon Analyzers works with its clients to determine the right solutions for their needs, depending on their size and the equipment that they use. The company is also careful to remain informed about any changes to the law, so that all of the solutions it provides to its customers contribute towards the end goal of complying fully with legal and safety obligations. For some customers this might mean measurements being taken once a year, but for others it can be as often as once per hour. “Our commitment to the satisfaction of our customers includes having a portfolio that can fully respond to their requirements. An excellent face to face service plus a quality product is what triggers our customers’ satisfaction. I am very strict with our products: each time we are searching for a new type of technology, I take a close look at the various options available and look for the features and benefits that offer a maximum advantage to our clients,” says Limón Escalante. For Limón Escalante, introducing new technology is central to the development of the company’s portfolio. “Now is a time of progress, and we are always looking into new technologies to improve the service we provide.”