Blog Archives - Thompson Industrial Services

Sponge Blasting Blows Away Other Methods (Part 1 of 2)

July 27, 2021
 Sponge blasting, as one of our newer service areas over the past 5 years, has been achieving substantial advancements for Thompson Industrial Services’ customers in many compelling, beneficial ways. As a versatile low dust cleaning method with a very favorable environmental impact, sponge blasting provides many of the same general benefits as other conventional services: it achieves equal or better results than competing methods, in less time, and with shorter cleanup times. Also in keeping with many other Thompson services, our sponge blasting teams can often apply our automated positioning systems to accelerate the process even more and keep personnel at a safe distance during cleaning.
 
In fact, the sponge blasting success stories have been coming so quickly that we had to split them up into a two-part blogpost! For the rest of the summer we’ll be sharing with you how this exciting, amazingly versatile application has been delighting our clients in various industries. 

Intro to Sponge Blasting

Sponge blasting is a multi-beneficial alternative to traditional sand blasting and other high-dust cleaning methods. Our system uses synthetic sponge media, which can be embedded with any one of a wide range of different abrasives to meet specific project needs from “soft” cleaning to achieving the toughest profiling specification. By customizing the abrasive type and size to the project, our teams can offer sponge blasting even in sensitive environments such as nuclear power plants and food processing facilities.
 
Sponge blasting is also an extremely low-dust application, minimizing impact on the surrounding environment. One unique feature of sponge blasting is the ability to recycle the synthetic media up to 10 times, which both saves money for blast media and disposal plus reduces the impact of the service on the ecosystem even further. Collection and recycling of media also means minimal cleanup following a project, with no effluents, runoff, or water to address.
 
Finally, sponge blasting is incredibly thorough. Even as it compresses project timelines, this service regularly yields better results than competing cleaning methods, getting pipes, vessel walls and surfaces “deep cleaned”, which is especially beneficial for pre-coating application projects, in less time. And now, to the real-life stories of how sponge blasting performs for our Thompson Industrial Services clients. 

Success Story #1: Boiler Tube Striping

Boiler tube striping is a process that is little known outside certain industries, but it is very important nonetheless. Striping, traditionally accomplished through sand blasting, allows for inspection of boiler tubes after cleaning by NDT and/or other crucial means to determine their thickness and structural integrity. In Kentucky, a client of ours managing a power plant asked our local division to try out sponge blasting instead to see if they could achieve similar results without so much dust and cleanup.
 

Sponge blasting versus traditional dust levels

Our team assessed the project, made the appropriate selections of abrasive type and pressure levels, and got to work. When the “dust had cleared” (metaphorically, of course!), the project had been completed to an equal or superior degree than the sand blasting method had provided. As the client had hoped, the sponge blasting method eliminated the need to contend with and clean up large amounts of effluent following the project, which saved a significant amount of time for the project as a whole. Another time-saving benefit was the fact that other boiler maintenance contractors could simultaneously continue working in the area, which shortened the overall outage schedule..

Needless to say, our client was very pleased with the outcome of the project! They indicated that they plan to use the sponge blasting service for boiler tube striping moving forward due to its significant time and cost savings over the previous sand blasting method.

Success Story #2: EO Railcar Cleaning

One of our divisions recently took on a project for a client that involves the use of automated sponge blasting to clean ethylene oxide (EO) railcars. In their first review meeting with the client after launching the service, our project managers were told that the Thompson team had distinguished itself so far through attention to detail, adherence to safety protocols, knowledge, and general great attitude, among other positive attributes. The good experience so far with Thompson has already prompted the client to initiate more work with their local division on the site.

Check back next month for more great success stories and more information on how Thompson Industrial Services’ sponge blasting application can save your facility time and money while protecting your equipment, your people, and your environment.

Two Specialized Safe Digging Applications

July 9, 2021

Some of the most powerful client outcomes we have seen here at Thompson Industrial Services, particularly in terms of safety and efficiency, come out of our pneumatic and hydro vacuum excavation division. It’s not difficult to imagine just how broad the range of situations is that can benefit from excavation equipment that uncover buried lines without damaging them, and our teams have been on site in many of those contexts across the country.

Clients are highly motivated to find safe alternatives to conventional excavation whenever possible, driven by sobering facts like these:

  • Over half of all power cable outages are traced back to conventional excavation equipment damage.
  • The Waterjet Technology Association reports that over 40% of pipeline system leaks and ruptures are the result of damage by outside forces, including excavation equipment.
  • Damaging lines during conventional digging places workers at risk of injury and death.
  • Advancing communications and utility technologies lead to the presence of a huge number of different buried lines, from cables and fiber optics to gas transfer and process lines, all of which are at risk of damage during conventional digging.

In this blogpost, we introduce you to two examples of recent projects for which our safe digging application was a perfect fit.

Solar Field Service

The main focus of a solar energy production facility is, of course, above the ground, where the sun’s rays shine on huge arrays of photovoltaic cells. But many miles of cabling and other infrastructure are needed below the surface to carry the resulting energy to the grid and to support the overall functioning of the plant. Our team at Thompson was able to contribute their expertise and safe digging equipment during installation of a solar field and also in ongoing maintenance work.

When an issue arises with a buried line on the site, using our hydro and pneumatic excavation equipment to find and uncover the trouble spot is much safer and more efficient than putting metal blades into the ground. In fact, more than half of all power cable service outages are caused by damage suffered during excavation using conventional equipment. Eliminating that possibility for damage is a huge advantage!

 
 
Thompson performs safe digging for solar fields.

Streamlining With a Single-Source Partner

One of the factors that our clients value most about Thompson Industrial Services is the breadth of our list of services. While boiler cleaning, hydroblasting, and chemical cleaning services represent the core of what we do, we also offer many specialty services that can be just as valuable to the client facilities that require them. From industrial drone inspections to dry ice blasting and EPICⓇ off-line HRSG cleaning, we strive to offer services that truly span the entire life cycle of an industrial facility.

Our partnership with a power company in North Carolina is a great example of how our variety of services helps save our clients money and time. When this client needs a “delicate dig” performed before they proceed with standard excavation equipment at a potentially sensitive site, it is very convenient for them to engage a supplier that is already “in the system” and is performing other functions for them–that is, Thompson Industrial Services. Facility managers also have a very high degree of confidence in Thompson’s ability to provide pneumatic and hydro vacuum excavation services since they are familiar with the integrity, expertise, and strict adherence to safety protocols that our teams display on every job.

Safe/Delicate Digging for Pipelines

As more current and potential clients across our service region learn about our pneumatic and hydro vacuum excavation capabilities, we see an enormous amount of potential for new types of projects. One of those exciting opportunities that is taking shape at the moment is excavation for methane gas pipeline placement along highways. Depending on the soil type, our teams elect to use either hydro vacuum (for clay soil) or pneumatic vacuum (for class C soil) excavation to quickly and cleanly remove soil, then replace it after the pipeline is installed. This service meets the requirements for efficiency and minimal disruption that a project like this has, and we anticipate that our safe digging division will continue its busy schedule as more clients choose to take advantage of its powerful benefits.

Stay connected with Thompson Industrial Services to discover more stories about successful projects that save money for our clients, as well as white papers, case studies, and other materials that provide more technical detail on our groundbreaking processes and equipment. As always, our expert management teams are ready to meet with you to consult about your facility’s unusual or sensitive project needs and inform you about the solutions that Thompson has available. We hope to meet you soon!

Important Results of Thompson’s Coronavirus Disinfecting Services

July 1, 2021

It’s not surprising to anyone that the COVID-19 global pandemic changed things at Thompson Industrial Services. Practically every organization in any industry was deeply impacted by the once-in-a-lifetime event and was forced to take special measures to keep its employees, customers, clients, and colleagues as safe as possible. At Thompson, though, we felt a special responsibility to respond to the health crisis in a particular way.

With our decades of history in industrial equipment cleaning and maintenance, our teams were uniquely positioned to pivot and begin offering coronavirus disinfecting services to both our existing clients and new clients–many of those in areas that Thompson has not traditionally serviced. Today, with numerous COVID-19 vaccines widely available and cases declining across the United States, we are able to share the important results of disinfection as a layer of protection, and to how our client’s ongoing disinfection programs are keeping everyone even safer and more productive than we originally imagined.

Long-Term Cleaning Projects Preventing Positives

Perhaps the most striking example of success in the area of coronavirus disinfecting services is our work at a Florida power plant. This client requested help keeping the facility compliant with COVID-19 sanitation protocols, and our regional office responded with cleaning services seven days a week. After two months of cleaning all mobile office trailers on site at the power plant, we are very proud to report that the facility has seen zero positive COVID-19 cases during our time of service there. 

Thompson’s coronavirus disinfecting services have had powerful results for clients.

We are also proud to partner with one of the largest coal power plants in the United States to provide disinfecting services Monday through Friday. Having our certified, expert technicians on site to disinfect surfaces and environments every workday helps employees at this site rest assured that they are being protected as fully as possible and allows them to focus on their critical work rather than on the threat of coronavirus transmission due to an unclean environment.

Each of our clients has a unique set of needs, and it’s important that our disinfecting services be versatile enough to meet those needs perfectly. As an example, a pulp & paper mill in Tennessee chose to have our team come in on a bi-weekly basis to do a complete disinfection of their warehouse and office areas.

Avoiding Lost Work

 The drastically reduced numbers of COVID-19 cases at these and our other disinfection clients’ facilities are obviously the number one goal, and we are very gratified to know that our teams have been an integral part of keeping folks safe at work in many of our country’s most important industries, including power generation, manufacturing, and oil & gas. The truth is, however, we have also seen a significant reduction in cases of other types of illnesses among workers at these facilities, most notably the flu. By reducing transmission of the flu and keeping employees safer from other communicable diseases, Thompson has helped facilities avoid lost work due to sickness in an already-challenging period.

Future Health and Safety Efforts

Vaccine availability, increased understanding of how COVID-19 is transmitted, and ongoing development of treatment options are all very welcome advantages that are undoubtedly lowering the threat of the pandemic. However, it’s important to remember that with new variants emerging, many areas of the country still have significant restrictions in place and both commercial and industrial facilities are responsible to respect those restrictions and continue protecting their employees and guests from disease transmission. It is also important to note the overall lost work effects that disinfection can have for a facility in preventing illnesses of all types.

Thompson Industrial Services plans to continue offering these important disinfection services in a flexible manner so that every client has access to services that fully comply with their state and local guidelines. As public health experts remind us, there is much that is still unclear about COVID-19, and much additional research is needed before we fully understand prevention and treatment. In the meantime, Thompson is committed to partnering with our clients, as we always have, to provide services at the highest level of quality and integrity.

Whether you are a current client of Thompson and are interested in adding disinfection services at your facility, or whether you manage a commercial property and need a reliable provider that can tailor services to your particular needs, we hope that you will contact your regional Thompson office to determine the best approach for your business.

FINFOAM Shines in New Application for Petrochemical Plants

June 8, 2021

Ever since FINFOAM became a division of Thompson Industrial Services, it has been a core service and a favorite among our industrial clients. FINFOAM was originally developed as an environmentally safe, gentle method for removing plugging and debris from air-cooled heat exchanger components. It’s incredibly effective in that application, and our teams have advanced it further by combining it with another of Thompson’s signature technologies: automated, remotely controlled positioning systems.

The non-toxic, simple nature of FINFOAM makes it surprisingly versatile, and recently our technicians have begun expanding their use of this proprietary application to other types of client projects. In the coming weeks we will be publishing a detailed white paper on these expanded service offerings utilizing FINFOAM, but in the meantime here is a summary of one of the first projects in that category. As you will see, its success provides us with a strong impetus to explore other ways that this amazing system can benefit our clients!

Petrochemical Plant Equipment

The story of this unusual project began with a request from a petrochemical plant related to a furnace at a Gulf Coast ethylene plant. The furnace’s efficiency and effectiveness had dropped well below optimal levels, and extensive research into the root causes finally revealed that the tubes in the convection section of the furnace were heavily contaminated with debris. While plant managers presumed that this debris buildup was the primary cause for the furnace’s poor performance, they also came to the conclusion that replacement of the convection section would be necessary since it had been in operation for nearly 20 years.

A Stop-Gap Cleaning Effort

The petrochemical plant engaged Thompson’s FINFOAM division to use its proven system, normally applied to air-cooled heat exchanger components, to attempt a cleaning of the tubes. The hope was that this cleaning approach would remove enough debris to bring the convection section up to acceptable levels of efficiency until the entire section could be replaced.

The Thompson team quickly built a strategy for cleaning the tubes, which were in a location that posed significant access challenges. Fortunately, the remotely controlled positioners that our teams frequently use with the FINFOAM system made it possible to apply the foaming agent to all surfaces of the tubes without cutting access holes or placing technicians in hazardous situations.

The team was also careful to mitigate the risk of water entering certain areas of the furnace, such as the firebox, during the rinse phase of the FINFOAM process. The planning and execution were highly effective, and it appeared that the cleaning had been successful in removing the built-up debris that had hindered the efficiency of the unit.

 
Our self-contained FINFOAM mobile unit

Results Surpassing Expectations

When the convection section was brought back online and tests were run to determine the efficiency gains of the FINFOAM cleaning, the results far surpassed the client’s expectations. Rather than simply bringing the performance levels up to minimal acceptable levels, the cleaning had made it possible for the unit to easily exceed the levels required for normal operation.

The client was so confident in the restored power of the furnace’s convection section as a result of treatment with FINFOAM that they decided there was no longer a need to immediately replace the section, instead postponing it to a future phase. In addition, the client expressed an intention of engaging with Thompson for additional cleaning projects at the facility to improve the performance of other furnaces.

Thompson and Innovation

This success story is just one example of the ways that our people here at Thompson Industrial Services constantly examine client needs, compare them with our present technology, and look for ways that we can make our operations do more than ever before. On a regular basis, we enter situations where an industrial facility’s leadership has become resigned to making do with poorly performing equipment, only to devise a plan that efficiently solves longstanding issues and restores levels of performance that the equipment has not provided in decades.

Please keep an eye on our website and social media for our upcoming full white paper on the use of FINFOAM in alternative settings, and get in touch with us today to arrange a consultation with one of our area experts.

2020: A Record Year for All the Right Reasons

There is scarcely a person in the United States who didn’t experience quite a number of unusual challenges in 2020. Amid the tough circumstances, though, there were some good things happening as well, and here at Thompson Industrial Services we were actually reaching some very important goals as the year went on. With a very unusual year in the rear-view mirror now, here are a few of the safety and automation goals that we were proud to achieve in 2020.

Zero SIF Actuals

If you don’t know what “SIF” stands for, that claim isn’t immediately striking. To every employee of Thompson Industrial Services, however, it represents a hard-to-believe victory on the part of our company and also highlights the genuine care that the Thompson family has for each other. SIF stands for “serious injuries and fatalities,” and we couldn’t be more pleased to attach that big fat zero to it for 2020!

The truth is, our technicians regularly work in environments with hazards such as high temperatures, enclosed spaces, caustic chemicals, and many others. In addition, many of the applications they use to do their work, from ultra-high pressure hydroblasters to solutions of incredibly powerful chemicals, pose additional risks. Over the years, Thompson management has worked very hard to understand these risks and implement policies, procedures, and especially technologies to protect our workers from them. Our perfect SIF record in 2020 indicates that those efforts have been very effective.

0.11 TIR

Another important acronym, this time referring to “total incident rate.” Our 2020 number, 0.11, is extremely low and a significant improvement over our 2019 number of 0.66. It continues a five-year trend of recording fewer and fewer total incidents every year. But the dropping number of incidents only tells part of the story. Combined with that trend has been an increasing number of total hours worked year on year, making our TIR rate an even more impressive achievement.

Other Important Safety Points

There were a few additional numbers in our 2020 statistics that round out our record safety year. The first is zero water blast incidents–the first year that we have been able to make that claim. Hydroblasting is a huge component of Thompson Industrial Services’ comprehensive service offerings, and our researchers have spent decades refining this service line with customized equipment and advanced automation.

Which brings us to the other significant number for us in 2020–namely, that across the board we doubled our use of automation compared with 2019. For many years we have based our research on the philosophy that the more we can automate our chemical cleaning, hydroblasting, and other services, the safer and more effective our teams will be. By relying more on automated technologies than in any past year, we really put that philosophy to the test–and it passed, of course, with flying colors. 

Our SIF prevention program provides detailed metrics on every job.
Our SIF prevention program provides detailed metrics on every job.

Our SIF Prevention Program

In partnership with our automation research, our SIF prevention program is the biggest contributor to the incredible safety numbers that we saw in 2020. Our system is incredibly broad-based yet also incredibly detailed, collecting metrics from our teams on the job site and passing them on to the safety councils in each of Thompson Industrial Services’ 20+ divisions.

As an example of the power of our SIF prevention program, we use it to do more than simply analyze incidents and strategize about how to avoid similar incidents in the future. The program also gives us the ability to see every “near miss” incident, which we address the same way we would an actual incident in order to prevent future SIF events from occurring. By identifying the root causes, taking action, and having thoughtful safety conversations around all types of incidents, we are proactively ensuring our systems and procedures are good, not lucky.

Looking Forward to a Safe 2021

One of the guiding principles of our safety program is to never be content with where we are. While we are extremely pleased with the safety that our teams enjoyed in 2020, we are committed to continuing to increase our use of automation, scrutinizing the data generated by our SIF prevention program even more closely, and carrying on the trend of increasing safety that we have maintained for years. It’s all about making sure that each Thompson employee has the resources and knowledge necessary to do a great job and get home safe at the end of every day.

Thompson Industrial Services: Putting People First

At Thompson Industrial Services, people always come first. That’s more than just a nice thing to say; it plays out in real, concrete ways across our entire company–and beyond. This month on our blog, we’d like to let you know about two recent events that illustrate the commitment that all of us here at Thompson have to putting people first.

While these two events are a very public way of helping people in the communities where our teams work every day, the truth is that within our company, whether in our corporate headquarters in Sumter, SC or on site at our clients’ facilities around the United States, we are always doing things to make people–both our team members and those of our clients–the priority.

Thompson team members participate in the 2020 Day of Caring at ECCO in Mt. Pleasant, SC.

Thompson team members participate in the 2020 Day of Caring at ECCO in Mt. Pleasant, SC

2020 Trident United Way Day of Caring

The Day of Caring event is a great initiative by the Trident United Way that, appropriately enough, celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2020. Partners of the United Way, including Thompson Industrial Services, observe this special day by contributing their time and energy to helping charities, schools, and other organizations that serve the community with much-needed services all year round.

This year, Thompson pitched in by sending a team and materials to the East Cooper Community Outreach, a great center that provides hugely valuable services to those in the Mt. Pleasant, SC community that need them most. Our folks had a great time volunteering along with our colleagues at Nucor Berkeley to improve the landscaping, parking lot, and other infrastructure around the site.

BASF Charity Golf Tournament

Another great event, also coordinated by the United Way, was the BASF charity golf tournament. The divisions of Thompson Industrial Services have a long history of participating in golf events with partners around the United States…and performing quite well in them, if we do say so ourselves!

This time around, a 10-person team of Division 60’s most skilled golfers helped BASF, our great partner in Louisiana, to raise about $65,000 for local charities. As always, it was a fantastic time with great friends, great golfing, and a great feeling knowing that we were able to make a significant difference in the lives of families in the area.

Putting People First All Year Round

We often reference our corporate motto, “Be safe, be good, be great.” The fact that “Be safe” is the first part of that motto is not random! Rather, it’s a powerful reflection of the fact that in all of our efforts to make our services more convenient, more cost-effective, and more valuable for our clients, we always keep one goal as the ultimate priority: getting every Thompson team member home at night safe and sound. That commitment also extends to the great people that work at our clients’ sites.

Just as we have done in the area of automation, our leadership at Thompson has guided our company in taking the fullest possible advantage of today’s technology to empower our company-wide safety system. This system gathers enormous amounts of data from all of the projects that our teams execute across the country, analyzes that data, and produces reports and metrics that our managers use to further refine our processes and mitigate more risks as we move forward.

Making Our Employees the Very Best

But keeping our people safe on the job, as critical as that is, isn’t enough for us at Thompson. We also believe it’s important to give each employee as many opportunities as possible to develop their own unique set of skills, talents, and perhaps undiscovered potential. To that end, Thompson offers team members a wide range of ongoing education, training, and leadership boot camp opportunities, led by instructors that are leaders in their fields.

We know that when we put people first, whether that’s by doing everything we can to ensure their safety on the job, giving them chances to build out their unique abilities, or contributing what we can to help the communities that surround our regional offices, we make our corner of the world a better place for everyone. We feel incredibly privileged to be able to do that, and we so appreciate all of our corporate partners that join us in our mission to put people first.

Thompson Industrial: A Chemical Cleaning Expert

When you need industrial cleaning services, there is no better option than Thompson Industrial Services. We’ve garnered invaluable skills and experience after more than three decades of cleaning services. Our company operates on three core principles that make us stand out from our competitors—safety, quality, and integrity. Through these values, our highly skilled and experienced personnel have developed a reputation for being best-in-class. That’s why some of the largest businesses take advantage of our boiler cleaning services.

Why Do You Need Chemical Cleaning?

No matter the industry, companies want to maximize their efficiency. Over time, the use of boilers, tanks, reactors, turbines, and other devices build up byproducts that reduce efficiency. Chemical cleaning is the leading method for recuperating the losses without any need for disassembly.

Chemical cleaning is a safe, powerful, and guaranteed method to thoroughly clean countless systems. What’s more, it’s quicker and more efficient than other cleaning methods like hydro blasting. Chemical cleaning minimizes waste, saves time, and in the end, saves businesses money.

What We Clean

Through decades of experience in chemical cleaning, we’ve seen unique challenges come through our door that we’ve stood up and handled. We have an impressive array of equipment that our chemical cleaning teams can handle.

  • Pre-operation Cleaning Procedures
  • Lube Oil System Flushing
  • Utility, Recovery, and Power Boilers
  • Cooling Water and Oxygen Systems
  • Heat Exchangers
  • Plate and Frame Heat Exchangers
  • Tanks
  • Reactors
  • Digesters
  • Degreasing, Pickling, and Passivation of Piping Systems
  • Scale and Product Pipe Cleaning
  • Evaporators and Economizers
  • Steam Turbines and Superheaters

Chemicals We Use

At Thompson Industrial, we only use safe and proven chemicals for cleaning. We’ve tested each product we use to ensure the results are up to standard regarding safety and efficacy. We may utilize all the following chemicals.

  • Hydrochloric Acid
  • Citric Acid
  • Phosphoric Acid
  • Formic Acid
  • EDTA
  • Copper Solvents
  • Inhibitors
  • Alkaline Degreasing
  • And more
custom chemical cleaning services
Thompson Industrial Services provides custom chemical cleaning services

Chemical Cleaning Experience

South Carolina Paper Mill

Recently, we were given the opportunity to clean the Number 1 Recovery Boiler at a major paper mill in South Carolina. Here’s what happened.

We rolled out our chemical safety team to assess the conditions before designing a cleaning strategy with the use of custom chemicals. Thus, our team was able to efficiently remove the fouling from boiler tubes using the chemicals and specialty equipment.

Upon inspection of the boiler chemical cleaning, our team, and the mill’s team, both concluded the project was completed. The cleaning was thorough, time was saved, and now, the business will see efficiency improve.

North Carolina Paper Mill

In another recent project, a client of ours had a liquor excursion contaminating their feedwater system. We performed complete efficacy tests immediately to determine the best route of attack. While no organic removal steps proved necessary, the challenge was still steep.

First, two boilers needed cleaning. Thanks to Thompson Industrials’ talented staff, our experts had no problem stepping up and putting in the extra hours to meet the deadline. We performed several key steps to ensure our boiler cleaning was successful. The chemical team completed a copper removal stage, acid stage, and a passivation stage.

In the end, both boilers were cleaned to satisfaction and need. The resultant inspections and flushing performed came back clean and positive.

Chemical Cleaning Ability

Thompson Industrial takes advantage of leading experts in the field to provide safe and effective cleaning services. Our team has the experience needed to make critical decisions in real-time. What’s more, with the best cleaning equipment in the market, there is no challenge we can’t face. Our chemical cleaning team uses all the following equipment and more:

  • Mobile Labs with AA units
  • SS mixing Tanks
  • Filtration Units and Tank Trailers
  • Electric and Diesel Pumps producing up to 3,200 GPM
  • 100 HP Boiler and Heat Exchangers
  • Skid units with Heat Exchangers and Filter Housing
  • Specialty Chemical Handling Equipment

Contact Thompson Industrial for any Chemical Cleaning Needs

As a long-standing business, we’re leaders in the field of chemical cleaning. We employ full-time, expert chemical cleaners who aggressively take on challenges to minimize client’s downtime and improve their efficiency.

Reach out to Thompson Industrial to inquire about a boiler cleaning service.

Thompson Industrial Services’ COVID-19 Disinfecting Services

As COVID-19 has impacted every aspect of life, including business operations, our industries must find a way to overcome the resultant complications. To support this effort, Thompson Industrial Services immediately developed coronavirus disinfecting services for our clients within days of it being declared a global pandemic.  All 20 of our branch locations have full capabilities to provide these services, with over 350 team members trained and certified to comply with CDC disinfection and pathogen prevention guidelines, utilizing EPA certified disinfecting products.

Experience to Meet All of Your Needs

Thompson’s core business has been providing industrial cleaning services for over 30 years, focused on pulp and paper, power generation, steel production, and petrochemical operations. Thompson has the capacity, knowledge, and experience to perform a wide variety of applications in these markets, including general vacuuming and hydroblasting, high volume cleaning, Ultra High Pressure (UHP) blasting services, and chemical cleaning and flushing.

This experience has positioned Thompson in a unique position for our new disinfecting services, as we have the capacity to meet the needs of large, industrial clients. We have provided thorough sanitization services for clients whose space ranges from 1,200 square feet to 650,000 square feet.  Our history of responding quickly to emergency situations allows us the ability to immediately service our clients in the case of a known coronavirus exposure.

COVID-19 disinfecting services
TIS provides thorough and safe COVID-19 disinfecting services

Transition to Coronavirus Disinfection

At Thompson, we understand the need for disinfection to meet hygiene and personnel safety needs. Thus, we have adapted our services to go beyond standard industrial cleaning. Starting in early March, we have been disinfecting businesses that have had known and suspected COVID-19 cases,

Our preventing disinfecting serves geared toward commercial clients is ideal for any business that wants to ensure it is protecting its employees and customers.  This is a critical function for businesses who are preparing to fully re-open after the various closures and lockdowns.

Our transition into disinfecting services has allowed us to expand our services to those who may not have required our core cleaning applications.  For example, we have provided disinfecting for the following types of locations:

  • Churches
  • Gyms
  • Retail facilities and restaurants
  • Warehouses
  • Automotive manufacturing facilities
  • Schools and Government Offices,

No application is too large or too small for Thompson Industrial Services.

Description of Disinfecting Services

We use disinfectant products that are registered by the EPA and have been qualified to use against the SARS-CoV-2 virus. What’s more, our staff has undergone thorough training to use these products in various applications. Thompson Industrial can perform electrostatic fogging, standard fogging, and spray & wipe applications.

No matter the area, our procedures are safe. Fogging has been proven safe to use around sensitive electronics such as control rooms and electrical rooms.

To effectively disinfect businesses, our response team has a thorough procedure to follow. This includes an initial assessment to create a decontamination plan.  From there, the team will disinfect all surfaces using procedures that comply with CDC and OSHA guidelines.

Upon completion of the decontamination plan, the team will properly package and dispose of all waste to comply with regulatory agencies.

All our services are thorough, efficient, safe, and timely. Patrons and employees can safely reenter the premises between 30 minutes and one hour after the completion.

Thompson Industrial as Your Coronavirus Disinfection Partner

If you’re unsure where to begin with disinfecting services, let us help. We have thoroughly trained our employees in Pathogen Prevention Plans to ensure we can slow the spread of COVID-19 through disinfection and decontamination services, utilizing 4 levels of service.

Level 1 corresponds to businesses who want a sanitization crew on standby, so they can disinfect whenever deemed necessary.

Level 2 is precautionary—businesses and industries who don’t have any cases, but they want daily disinfection during non-business hours to reduce the risk of downtime.

Level 3 is for those who have had a suspected exposure to the virus. Thompson will provide basic COVID-19 disinfection services.

Level 4 meets the needs of businesses that have confirmed cases and exposure. Thompson will create a custom plan with specific protocols to properly sanitize and decontaminate the site.

The Bottom Line

Thompson Industrial Services has decades of experience in providing industrial cleaning services. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, we have adjusted our services to provide coronavirus disinfecting to businesses in all industries. If your business needs an expert sanitizing service provider, look no further. Reach out to create a custom Pandemic Emergency Plan. Give us a call at 803-934-0138.

HRSG Cleaning with EPIC(™) Technology: A Safe, Proven Cost-Effective Solution

Maximize HRSG Efficiency & Performance While Cutting Operating Costs

When you want to ensure your HRSG unit is running efficiently, it occasionally needs to be off-line cleaned professionally and thoroughly. An exceptionally effective and safe technique incorporates targeted pressure wave impulse technology applied at Mach- 5 speed utilizing EPIC (Extraction Pressure Impulse Cleaner) technology.

This patented process has been developed and perfected for HRSGs after 14 years of success and experience with it’s on-line counterpart, including on HRSGs and up to 900 Mw boilers. EPIC’s technology and its unique remote-controlled navigation positioning equipment directly focuses localized energy into the finned tube bundles to ensure its deep, penetrating and 360 degree effectiveness reaches and cleans all the crucial heat transfer surfaces without superfluous indiscriminate blasting or explosions to non-essential components or structures.

When the EPIC process is utilized for your HRSG cleaning needs, you’ll be rewarded with reduced CT back pressure, fuel costs and exit stack temperatures as well as overall increased efficiency, and much more.

Not Optimizing HRSGs’ Performance Can Be Costly

When your plant’s HRSG unit is effectively cleaned, it will restore performance that was previously lost because insulating deposits increased the CT backpressure (thus output) and increased fuel consumption. This backpressure is most frequently the result of deposits that gradually build up and affix themselves to the close-tolerance finned tubes during HRSG operation, which is standard, particularly after 5-15 years of operation. Oftentimes, DP recovery can be 3-6”, which can yield a payback in 2-4 months of operation. However, without proper cleaning, HRSG units can experience increased back pressure resulting in the overall heat rate worsening and loss of efficiency, which may even cause de-rating in peak demand periods.

Factors Leading to High Operating Costs

  • Lack of optimum cleanliness of crucial heat transfer surfaces
  • Increased CT back pressure/decreased generation because of excessive deposits
  • Lower feedwater exit temperatures necessitating additional fuel to compensate for same
  • Wasting Btu’s going up the stack rather efficient convection-transfer to the ID of tubes
  • Requiring excessively more outage duration to attempt cleaning by other methods rather than getting back on-line quicker
  • Increased fuel costs due to otherwise unnecessary use of duct burners or excessive firing
  • Due to the expense of certain other methods, cleaning intervals may be excessively delayed and/or less than the optimum quantity of harp bundles are cleaned during a project

EPIC Cleaning System

The Extraction Pressure Impulse Cleaner is a state-of-the-art cleaning technology invented and patented by PowerPlus Cleaning Systems with Thompson Industrial Services as the exclusive provider of the service. The technology is based on a process originally patented by GE (but now owned by PowerPlus Cleaning Systems) and is used for off-line cleaning of HRSG units. This system has passed the test of time for both on-line boiler-cleaning— with nearly 14 years of use— and off-line cleaning in more recent times.

EPIC Overview

The EPIC pressure wave system was designed to improve current HRSG cleaning methods and do so safely and quite effectively without damage or stretching to any combined cycle components. Although various HRSG cleaning systems exist, all had their flaws, and none can now reach the same standards and controls set by EPIC. This proprietary technology removes deposits that have built up and are lodged deep into the harp’s finned tube bundles.

How EPIC Works

The EPIC system incorporates a special device called IMPULSE(R) (internationally patented), to deliver high-pressure (<40 PSI) cleaning pulses focused and targeted circumferentially to just the troublesome heat transfer surfaces. Essentially, the system uses air shockwaves that penetrate the tube banks to dislodge (i.e. “extract”) foreign deposits. The overall cleaning system is remotely controlled by a navigation system outside of the HRSG unit in Thompson’s mobile command center. The personnel navigating the cleaning system can maneuver the system in nearly all directions to avoid obstructions, and place the system in the correct spot to clean the finned tubes and free them of the insulating deposits.

EPIC-works

The Benefits of Using EPIC

  • Deep, thorough 360-degree cleaning of the critical tubes and fins
  • Zero damage done on any parts, components, welds, expansion joints or instruments
  • No shock or superfluous, indiscriminate blast impact to the rest of the HRSG unit
  • Highly technologically advanced; 6 camera views from command center; remote bundle differential pressure monitoring; multiple fail-safe features; borescope videoing before and after and more
  • Personnel are totally remote from the operating system
  • No scaffolding required
  • Reduced downtime for cleaning
  • Reduced combustion turbine back pressure
  • Improved heat transfer efficiency/decrease stack temperature
  • Overall financial gain
  • Optional drone inspections of HRSG and SCR

Case Study

A case study performed at a large combined cycle plant in Florida examined the benefits of EPIC technology on a Nooter/Eriksen HRSG unit. What the study found was astonishing. After a thorough cleaning with the EPIC technology, the HRSG unit experienced a decrease in CT backpressure by 4 inches of the water column. This correlated to a decrease in heat rate by 0.5 MMBtu/MWh. These impressive results yielded a payback in 1,000 full-load hours in payback, which equated to roughly $600,000 per year in this instance.

Conclusion

Every business in every industry should be planning for the future. To do so, they must all look to the newest technology, so they can compete and excel. For combined cycle plants, that means looking towards EPIC technology. With proven results, EPIC technology offers everything a combined cycle plant could target for; improved cleaning, safety, decreased downtime, zero damage, and an optimized HRSG unit.

If you want to improve the efficiency of your HRSG unit while saving money, request a consultation with Thompson Industrial Services to find out more about implementing Thompson’s EPIC technology and service at your plant.

Press Releases

GBRIA 2020 Safety Excellence Awards

Thompson Industrial Services Appointed Third Place Award Winner

Baton Rouge, Louisiana, August 17, 2020

 “A Safety Milestone We Are Very Proud Of!”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: The Greater Baton Rouge Industry Alliance appointed winners of the 24th Annual Safety Awards. Thompson Industrial Services was awarded for General Construction & Maintenance, Division I.

GBRIA 2020 Safety Excellence Awards

The prestigious recognition by the GBRIA is something regional industries strive to obtain. A company must maintain a work environment that surpasses others with a recording of less than 1.0 for the past 16 years. Thompson Industrial not only meets these qualifications but exceeds OSHA standards and the best safety practices which are industry-specific.

Safety Through Automation

The stringent safety practices include the use of automation to ensure the safety of employees. Thompson is quickly approaching 100%-Hands-Free Automation capability.

 

As innovation and technology advances, we evolve with equipment, training, and safety that’s in line with those advancements. The use of remote control equipment enables us to reach areas that are otherwise dangerous or inaccessible. By doing so, cleaning is done quickly and in a much more thorough manner. Through our automation, you benefit by reducing your downtime and the expense that quickly racks up from manual labor.

 

  • Removes the dangers of water-related injuries that can occur with manually operated cleaning equipment.
  • It also protects the integrity of surfaces hydro blasting comes into contact with.
  • Cuts cleaning time in half and reduces required manpower.
  • It provides an option for cutting concrete or steel.
  • Eliminates the need for confined space entry permits.

High Standards of Safety

The safety practices Thompson Industrial has in place are higher than most regional industries. This is to ensure the safety of every person under the employ of Thompson. Safety goals and procedures are developed and enforced through specialized training and accountability.

 

  • Regular audits are done through data analysis. The valuable feedback through the data audits points out areas of success as well as those needing improvement.
  • To avoid complacency and promote safety awareness, behavior mitigation is in place to protect employees.
  • Customized checklists are developed for each site/task to further enforce safety measures.
  • Yearly safety trends are reviewed regularly to compare with current trends.

Thompson Industrial Services

Thompson Industrial Services, LLC, was founded in 1986. Sumter, South Carolina is where headquarters calls home. Service locations are scattered throughout the U.S. As a single-source industrial service, Thompson serves all phases of industrial cleaning.

 

Industrial services Thompson specializes in includes hydro blasting, vacuuming, chemical cleaning, pre-commission cleaning, hydro- and pneumatic-vacuum excavation, and decommissioning. Our specialties don’t end here because we also do combustible dust remediation, FINFOAM(R) cleaning of air-cooled heat exchangers, HRSG cleaning, dry ice blasting, tank cleaning, industrial drone inspection, and COVID-19 disinfecting.

The “Thompson” Culture

Here at Thompson Industrial Services, you are met with old-fashioned hospitality and values with safety that is state of the art. We don’t compromise on friendliness, customer service, quality, or safety. You get the very best when you hire us.

 

If you would like more information about our services or need a quote, we have someone available to take your call. We look forward to being the industrial cleaning service that will surpass your expectations! Contact us today!