In the earliest days of the LDAR Industry, there was the Foxboro OVA-108. It was an analog VOC analyzer that presented its PPM results on a dial that made getting a precise reading a lot like trying to tell time with a sun dial. In the fall of 1995, the momentum shifted toward the Thermo TVA 1000. Interestingly enough, it was not the fact that the Thermo TVA 1000 was a vastly superior analyzer that drove the dynamic. The TVA 1000 WAS a digital device along with being much easier to calibrate precisely. When Thermo released the TVA 1000B, with the capability of recognizing multiple calibration (span) points, the technological advantage of the TVA over the OVA was fully achieved.
But the market force that catapulted the Thermo TVA 1000 and 1000B to the undisputed LDAR Industry leader was the capability of interfacing it electronically with the LeakTracker hand held datalogger. By enabling the direct connectivity of the Thermo TVA 1000B with the LeakTracker via the AIMS cable, the integrated package brought about a sea change in the expectation that everyone had about how monitoring readings were generated, captured and labeled with time and date stamps calibrated to the precise second. These time/date stamps and the fact that they were generated automatically by the system (sometimes unbeknownst even to the technician) became the coin of the realm for LDAR program managers determined to shore up the integrity and reliability of their LDAR monitoring results.
Data recordation, management and integrity proved to be a far more compelling LDAR feature than the technological advantages that one analyzer possessed over another.
And so the pattern was set.
The Thermo TVA 1000B maintained its industry domination until the data recordation process experienced another sea change in 2007, when Bluetooth technology started to redefine the LDAR Industry. Almost overnight, the introduction of Thermo TVA 1000B Bluetooth Adapters ushered onto the scene a phalanx of successors to the LeakTracker. The primary selling point was no longer that you had a Thermo TVA 1000B- but that you had a Thermo TVA 1000B Bluetooth Adapter. The analyzer’s function and value was defined, almost, by how it communicated its result to the PDA that the technician was carrying.
And that changed everything.