HARC's Alex Cuclis wrote an article, "How expensive is bad science", for The Cynthia & George Mitchell Foundation. Alex elaborates on creating cost-effective ozone control strategies.
Measuring Pollutants in Neighborhoods near Petrochemical Facilities
HARC is working to help local communities improve air quality and quality of life. HARC is partnering with the Environmental Integrity Project (EIP) to train community members living near petrochemical facilities to take measurements of air toxics using monitoring tools that are typically used by environmental regulatory enforcement agencies.
The project is lead by Alex Cuclis, Research Scientist in Air Emissions and Monitoring. Community members are being trained to use tools such as handheld photoionization detectors (PIDs) which have detection limits of about 3 parts per billion (ppb); Summa Canisters, which can be sent off for a standard air quality analysis known as TO-15 to provide accurate concentrations of specific volatile organic compounds, like benzene and toluene; and particulate matter (PM) 2.5 monitors that are approved by EPA as a Federal Reference Method (FRM).
Each of these tools brings an added level of sophistication and improved accuracy to community air toxics monitoring efforts. HARC’s participation in this project will help to ensure success by making sure that the testing is performed with the appropriate quality assurance and quality controls in place as well as all of the necessary documentation.
Alex Cuclis, Research Scientist, Air Quality and Emissions, presented at the CLEO: 2014 Exposition on Tuesday, June 10, 2014 in San Jose, California.
Air pollution is a pressing concern that affects our health and quality of life. Traditional ways of measuring ambient air quality have primarily relied on permanent and semi-permanent stationary enclosures.
HARC research scientist Alex Cuclis applies his technical expertise to help clean the air in the Houston region and other areas with heavy petrochemical concentrations.
Accurate air pollution monitoring – the focus of much of research scientist Alex Cuclis' work for HARC - is essential to efforts to clean the air in Houston and other locations in Texas.
With $3 million in new federal funding, air quality specialists at the Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC) will refine sophisticated methods they have been developing to help understand and improve air quality.
Advanced engine control strategies and after-treatment control strategies are being developed to meet stringent emissions regulations for large diesel engines.
HARC deployed a mobile laboratory equipped with a Geographical Positioning System (GPS) and a Proton Transfer Reaction-Mass Spectrometer (PTR-MS) to perform real time measurements of ambient concentrations of toxic volatile organic compounds in the vicinity of oil and gas sites located on a large private property in the Eagle Ford Shale of South Texas.
Methane is a prevalent greenhouse gas. HARC is working with to review the EPA modeling approach, compile data regarding the sampled production sites, and investigate estimated site emissions.
The Benzene and other Toxics Exposure (BEE‐TEX) Study is a field study of exposure to and source attribution of the air toxics: benzene, toluene, ethyl benzene and xylenes (BTEX), as well as other hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) such as formaldehyde and 1,3-butadiene.