Monday, February 20, 2012

“Hear” and Now: Acoustic Telemetry Under the Sea

Pipelines are such a natural part of our daily life that you may not think much about what goes into their successful operation. Carrying everything from water to oil to natural gas, so many of our daily activities are directly or indirectly made possible thanks to well-constructed and reliable pipelines. The stresses on these systems are many: friction and pressure from the flow of liquid, pressure buildup from valve operation, vibration, and, perhaps most crucial, temperature. As this article from Offshore magazine illustrates, underwater natural gas pipelines are especially susceptible to the dangers of cold ambient temperatures: if they fall too much, crystals can form, slowing the flow of gas. If it goes unnoticed or unaddressed, that inconvenience turns into a burst pipe. In other words, a disaster.

Telemetry innovation plays a major role in preventing such situations. Through acoustic telemetry, the water temperature can be monitored, and maintenance personnel can be alerted when dangerous levels occur. Although we at Devar deal mostly in wired, electronic monitoring, we applaud the ingenuity of the acoustic model: it’s especially well-suited to deep-sea applications thanks to the lack of cables and wiring. As monitoring and alarm specialists, we’re here to answer any questions you might have about your own telemetry needs: be sure to visit our website for more information.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Plight at the Museum: Preserving Precious Artifacts through Humidity Control

Books, pictures, old letters – whether sitting on a shelf, hanging on our wall, or in a box in the attic, it’s likely that you’ve seen the effects of time and age on any or all of these items. Breaking down that idea of the effect of time, though, what does it really mean? Typically, it refers to the ravages of handling, temperature, and humidity on paper, an organic substance especially vulnerable to these environmental factors. Most people aren’t overly concerned about maintaining these items for all posterity, though – usually, a few decades will suffice. But what about objects that are hundreds of years old? How are they still around, and in as good of shape as they are? The answer lies in humidity and temperature control.

Of course, digital monitors like the ones that Devar supplies weren’t around when, say, Van Gogh painted his Starry Night, let alone when da Vinci gave us the Mona Lisa. But make no mistake about it – there was some type of environmental monitoring and control at work to ensure that these masterpieces stood the test of time. Products like ours just make that task easier for today’s museum curators. Humidity and temperature transmitters can be outfitted for entire buildings – after all, most museums keep paintings bare of any sort of glass covering – or for more intricately controlled environments, like the small housing in the Louvre that contains the Mona Lisa. And back to those dusty letters and old books? Humidity monitors aren’t just for institutions. Plenty of amateur archivists keep those objects precious to them in climate-controlled environments, giving them the same care and protection afforded to the great works. Here at Devar, we’re happy to serve both types of customer, helping those who care enough to save a piece of today for tomorrow.