Enforcing environmental protection in the Netherlands

The Dutch Environmental Protection Agency (DMCR) is shown in an applications report and video describing how it is using a FLIR Systems GF320 Optical Gas Imaging (OGI) camera to uphold regulations regarding fugitive gas emissions.

After comparing several possible monitoring techniques, including Differential Absorption Light Detection (DIAL) and Solar Occultation Flux (SOF), the report details how the DMCR opted for a FLIR GF320 OGI camera as its primary method of choice to detect, and pinpoint to source, airborne environmental pollutants. Technical specialists at DMCR decided that while complementary methods such as DIAL and SOF are robust and can quantify site wide emissions, these technologies are very expensive to purchase, requiring large trucks to carry the equipment and require a lot of training to be used effectively. By comparison the GF-Series OGI camera was seen to provide considerable benefits in terms of pinpointing leak sources, affordability, compactness, portability and was very easy to use, requiring very little training.

The Dutch Environmental Protection Agency concluded that the FLIR GF320 OGI camera is a quick, non-contact measuring instrument that can immediately give the camera operator an overview of a fugitive emission. Users found it beneficial that the FLIR GF320 can be used in hard-to-access locations detecting small leaks from several meters away,  big leaks from hundreds of meters away, and even show leaks in moving transport vehicles.

The DCMR Environmental Protection Agency is the regional environmental agency of the local and regional authorities operating in Rijnmond, the larger ‘Port of Rotterdam’ area in the Netherlands. The tasks of the DCMR include regulation of the industries, monitoring and assisting authorities on developing environmental policy. The DCMR issues permits to virtually all of the 22,000 enterprises in the area and carries out more than 9,000 inspections to monitor compliance with the permit conditions.

The FLIR GF320 OGI camera is a real-time infrared camera designed for use in harsh industrial environments. The FLIR GF320 takes advantage of state-of-the-art focal plane array detector and optical systems that are tuned to very narrow spectral infrared ranges. This enables the camera to image infrared energy absorbed by certain environmentally polluting gases. Images are processed and enhanced by the FLIR High Sensitivity Mode feature to clearly show the presence of gases against stationary backgrounds. Gases that are detectable by the FLIR GF320 camera appear on screen as smoke plumes.

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