Pollution Prevention Case Study

Modine Manufacturing Company

Zero Discharge Aqueous Cleaning Line

Industry; SIC Code Manufacturer of Heat Transfer Products for Vehicles, Heavy Equipment Commercial Heating and Ventilating Products for Buildings; SIC 3714, 3583, 3442
Process Cleaning or Degreasing of metal prior to assembly or painting
Type of Waste Hazardous wastes and emissions from 1,1,1 Trichloroethane (TCA)
Strategies Eliminate the use of TCA through implementation of an aqueous cleaning system. The original strategy considered a conventional alkaline cleaning system with a 11 gallon per minute (GPM) flow to wastewater treatment. However after careful study it was determined that a zero discharge system was feasible.
Background The Modine facility in Racine Wisconsin is the corporate headquarters and manufacturing research and development center for the corporation. Extensive prototype work and testing is accomplished at the plant. These processes require cleaning of sub-components before they are assembled and/or in some instances prior to painting.

The Modine Company used TCA as the cleaning agent to remove grease and oils from parts in an open top vapor degreaser.

Motivation The Modine Company has a strong corporate commitment to reduce waste and emissions wherever possible. In recognition of the costs and issues associated with TCA it was decided to eliminate the chemical by implementing an aqueous cleaning process.
Changes Implemented The schematic demonstrates the general layout of the cleaning system designed and built by company process chemists and engineers. Evaporation is incorporated as part of the cleaning system and operates on demand versus continuos operation. Incoming water is also a demand basis which is driven by the total amount of water consumed during operation. Permeate from the filtration system is returned to the cleaning tank. There is zero discharge from this cleaning system.
Problems Encountered Selecting the best filtration media for the process and the actual engineering and design of the iteration system was the most challenging task. Other considerations were selection of the cleaning chemical and achieving the supply/consumption balance for water needed to operate the system.
Material/Energy Balance Original Approach

9,800 lbs./yr TCA

TCA 9,800 lb/yr Emissions
Hazardous waste 55 gal/yr
Cooling Water Discharge

Considered Approach

275 gal/yr Alkaline Cleaner
Process Water

90 gal/yr Cleaner/Water
15,840 gal/day Wastewater Treatment
Sludge Unknown lb/yr

Zero Discharge System

55 gal/yr Alkaline Cleaner
Process Water

0 gal/yr Cleaner/Water
         0 gal/yr Wastewater Treatment
0 lb/yr Sludge

Original Approach
Operating Costs
TCA $  8,900
Cooling Water $  2,200
Chemical $     650
Totals $11,560
Capitol Investment $    -0-
Energy Costs, in BTU/Hour Unknown
Considered Approach
Operating Costs
Alkaline Cleaner $     750
Process Water/Disposal $  8,700
Chemical Disposal $  5,400
Totals $14,850
Capitol Investment $ 18,510
Energy Costs, in BTU/Hour 577,980
Zero Discharge System
Operating Costs
Alkaline Cleaner   $150
Process Water/Disposal   $115
Chemical Consumption >$150
Totals    $450
Capitol Investment $59,950**
Energy Costs, in BTU/Hour 110,480
Approximate Payback Based upon a minimum annual savings of $14,435 experience in operating costs only, the payback period on $59,950 capital investment is 4 years. However this pay period does not include cost savings for labor, avoided costs for handling wastes, reduced time for reporting emissions and hazardous waste and the liability that was eliminated because there is no accountable waste from the zero discharge system.
Other Minimization Activities Modine Manufacturing has had an aggressive and very effective waste reduction program for several years. The "Shrinking Drum" is awarded to each facility that achieves the waste reduction goals which are established by that facility. The Corporate Headquarters in Racine leads this program by testing new pollution prevention/waste reduction measures such as the zero discharge system, before they are implemented in the field.
Company Address Modine Manufacturing Company
1500 Dekoven Avenue
Racine, Wisconsin 53403
Contact Person Mr. David Peterson
Process Chemist

Mr. Edward Besaw
Environmental Engineer

FAX: 414-636-1424

Additional Publications Available SHWEC Publications
Pollution Prevention: A Guide to Program Implementation
Industrial Cleaning Source Book
Waste Reduction Assessment for a Fabricated Metal Prod. Ind.
Closed Loop Metal Finishing, factsheet

Department of Natural Resources Publications
Contact the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Pollution Prevention Clearinghouse, P.O. Box 7921, Madison, WI 53707, for a Publication Order Form, PUBL-SW-199, or call 608/2679523.

Suggested publications include:
Aqueous Industrial Cleaning Chemicals, PUBL-SW-147
Aqueous Part Washing Equipment, PUBL-SW-148
Guides to Pollution Prevention, The Metal Finishing Industry, EPA/625/R-92/011
Guides to Pollution Prevention, The Fabricated Metal Products Industry, EPA/625/7-90/006
Facility Pollution Prevention Guide, EPA/600/-92/088

Pollution Prevention Resources Free, Nonregulatory On-site Technical Assistance
University of Wisconsin Extension
Solid and Hazardous Waste Education Center
Pollution Prevention Specialists
Area Code 414 call the Milwaukee area: 414/475-2845
Remainder of state: 608/262-0385

Pollution Prevention Clearinghouse
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
Hazardous Waste Minimization Program
608/264-8852, 608/267-9523 or 608/267-3763

DNR Logo

Bureau of Cooperative Environmental Assistance
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
P.O. Box 7921
Madison, WI   53707