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Guru

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DESTINED TO HEAVEN,LANDING INTO HELL-THE MERCAPTANT AURA

12/26/2009 5:06 AM

Happy New Year 2010 wishes to all CR4 MEMBERS.

The ongoing global warming threats had lead to serious technical considerations and implementations in the fuel usage of engines, emission control measures, improved combustion, energy efficiency, economy and air safety.Recent thread titled "Are Electric Cars an energy Panacea "has some relevance to this thread. The electric cars era should reach the roads no sooner, which was seriously felt on observation and experience of the MERCAPTAN odour menace in cities.

Happened to be a dweller in sub urban township, air pollution menaces are not so seriously felt, since most of the vehicles here are run on petrol.

Recent trends seems more in favour and use of LPG or CNG for economy, efficient combustion and improved emission control. Most of the cars and even bikes are getting converted into gas mainly on cost economy compared to petrol/ diesel.

One more imposition is the insistence on Gas fuel used taxies, Auto rickshaws in major cities like New Delhi, Mumbai. Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai and other cities. Good initiatives and catching up adaptations. Everything looks fine. But a sad note which is supposed to have been felt by all of us.

The Methyl Mercaptan mixture meant for gas leakage detection is felt inside the very cars and foul odour is a big menace. Gas used vehicles could easily be sensed by the bad odour they keep leaving behind.

Cities are mostly run with CNG or LPG gas used auto rickshaws and my recent stay in the Garden City of BANGALORE, which I respect as a green city had made my impression to change. The whole city is haunted by the aura of Methyl Mercaptan foul odour and being a humid atmosphered area, the odour persists over the whole days and people are also got used to the same. I had to count down my days of return to get rid of the odour menace and could do so .

How ever with serious feelings on the fate of inhalers of this odour menace daily.It is also noted that the gas is also a toxic ant restricted to low ppm levels.

*Should this obvious menace of Mercaptan Aura to be continued?

*Is there any alternate ways to escape this?

*Is this a global phenomena?

*Do we have alternate detection measures without this foul odours?

*Is there any regulations on this odour menace?

Can we get rid of this problem or get our senses slowly become immune?

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Guru

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#1

Re: DESTINED TO HEAVEN,LANDING INTO HELL-THE MERCAPTANT AURA

12/26/2009 5:18 PM

Mercaptan is added to gas for the simple purpose of identifying unsafe levels of gas leakage from the system.

If you are smelling it, then there is a fire danger.

The best way to fix it is to fix the leaks.

The mercaptan is not the menace, the gas leakage is, both to people and to the environment. FIX THE LEAKS!!!

In KL you don't ever smell mercapton and we have lots of taxis that run on compressed gas. In the US and Europe the only time you smell mercapton is when there is a serious problem.

Again fix the leaks, or stop using gas. Sounds like India's contribution to global warming is more than just exhaust gasses, although in my visits to Mumbai and Jamnagar I did not notice a mercaptan smell.

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#3
In reply to #1

Re: DESTINED TO HEAVEN,LANDING INTO HELL-THE MERCAPTANT AURA

12/27/2009 3:33 AM

Is inhaling mercaptan bad for you in the long run? Bad as in carcinogenic? I just realized that the epoxy cement I use for some of my mini projects have that stuff in it and directions are to keep away from inhaling it. Duh. But when you apply cement to plastic parts, the odor is present. I wonder what the OSHA says about epoxy and mercaptan.

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Guru

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#6
In reply to #1

Re: DESTINED TO HEAVEN,LANDING INTO HELL-THE MERCAPTANT AURA

12/27/2009 11:31 PM

Thank you Stecve.S for the reply post.

The odour menace of gas is very well felt. Cities like Bangalore exhibit moderate temperatures and being cool most of the years. The very reason for odour sustinance . May be members from Bagnalore will be able to consolidate to my observations.

As you have rightly said the leakage is an important considerations. Here many of the Maruthi Omni vans fixed with gas conversions for TAXI purposes and after closing the doors one got to live with the mixed gas and mercaptan smell. I am sure I made no exaggerations. The gas engine converted auto's in Bangalore are large numbered and should be one the main reason-LEAKAGES. The thing is people got used to it.

Leak detection system is a safety need. The direct burning at home makes a difference between engine combuston, if I am right.Can we think of alternate smell free detection systems. Is there any new developments or implementations?

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#2

Re: DESTINED TO HEAVEN,LANDING INTO HELL-THE MERCAPTANT AURA

12/26/2009 5:39 PM

The OP is quite long on vague worry-wart language and quite short on expository language with useful engineering and toxicology data. The all-caps headline didn't help, either.

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#4

Re: DESTINED TO HEAVEN,LANDING INTO HELL-THE MERCAPTANT AURA

12/27/2009 4:16 AM

The MSDS didn't show teratogenic, mutagenic, or carcinogenic, as I recall. The odor threshold is 1.6 ppb, the PEL-OSHA is 10 ppm, the TLV ACGIH is 0.5 ppm, and the IDLH is 150 ppm. Because this chemical can be smelled WAY below dangerous levels, it is self-alarming. Because the odor is disagreeable, no one remains around dangerous concentrations unless they are trapped by an industrial-scale release, which might happen in paper mills, sewage plants, or LPG facilities in which methyl mercaptan is intentionally added as a leak-indicating odorant. Occupational casualties have been quite low (but not zero). Further observation could change this, but for now it looks like the alarmist variety of bad "environmental engineering."

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#5
In reply to #4

Re: DESTINED TO HEAVEN,LANDING INTO HELL-THE MERCAPTANT AURA

12/27/2009 4:21 AM

Thanks, that's good info !

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Guru

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#7
In reply to #4

Re: DESTINED TO HEAVEN,LANDING INTO HELL-THE MERCAPTANT AURA

12/27/2009 11:38 PM

Tornado,

Thank you for the information. Methyl mercaptan is a toxic gas as per literature and the threshold limits had been standardized in many countries. As Steve,S had put up, the leakage part should be causing the menace.

Smell detection by another smelling gas could be a good idea. When converted auto population is very high the net effect seems augmented.

Can technology think of still better options?

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