Building True Partnerships Between Community and Industry

Topics and Meetings

Upcoming Meetings

  • January 27, 2020 -- Tour of San Jacinto College's New LyondellBasell Center for Petrochem, Energy and Technology
  • The typical DPCAC meeting agenda includes updates from plants on environmental and safety performance and business information. The main topic may be a presentation, an annual report, or a tour. Time is always allotted for Q&A and discussion. Plans for the next few meetings are reviewed and confirmed. Contact us at if you would like an invitation to attend.

Question of the Month: How is metal thickness measured to assure plant equipment stays fit for service? ?

  • We can’t see inside equipment when it’s in service. So how do we check metal thickness to ensure the plant stays healthy? There are a number of different methods, including radiography (X-rays), but the most common is Ultrasonic Thickness Testing (UT).
  • Why do we do UT thickness gauging? To assure the integrity of pressure retaining equipment; Measuring the thickness of metal at a single point in time lets us know the equipment is fit for service; Measuring how the thickness changes over time lets us predict corrosion or erosion rates; and measuring how the thickness changes over time also allows us to spot unexpected or accelerated metal loss.
  • What do we measure? Piping, vessels, heat exchangers, tanks, or just about any metal object with a relatively smooth surface.
  • How does a UT thickness gauge work? A probe is placed on metal with a couplant liquid between the probe and metal. Very similar to how an ultrasonic image is taken at a doctor’s office. The device measures the flight time of a sound pulse. It converts the time to thickness because sound velocity is known. Sound velocity is determined during calibration and stored in the gauge. That’s how we assure the instrument stays accurate.
  • Click here to read previous questions and answers related to Deer Park industry.

Additional Topics

Current and Prior Year Meeting Summaries
Of Special Interest over the Years
  • March 28, 2016 -- Plant Community Relations Programs.  Summary.
  • August 22, 2016 -- Industrial Hygiene:  Protecting Workers from Workplace Hazards. Summary. Slides.
  • October 26, 2015 -- Deepwells.  Summary. Slides.
  • February 2013 -- How TCEQ Uses Emissions and Air Monitoring Data to Protect Public Health. Slides. Causes of Death in Deer Park Compared to Texas As a Whole. Slide. Summary.
  • June 2012 -- Water Planning in Our Region Summary. Slides.
  • November 2011 -- TCEQ Flaring Study Findings Summary. Slides.
  • April 2010 -- Ship's Pilot's Photographic Tour of Houston Ship Channel
  • August 2009 -- Indoor Air Quality
  • October 2007 -- Understanding the Links between Exposure, Dose, and Health Effects. Slides.
How We Select Meeting Topics

Every year or so, DPCAC develops a Program Plan to assure it is addressing issues of greatest interest to community members.  Community members, plant members, and guests brainstorm topics they believe DPCAC should address.  Using sticky dots, they choose those they most want to cover in the coming year.  By using different colors for community and plant members, the CAC can schedule the topics of most community interest. The Program Plan is flexible and may be changed by group agreement.

Contact Us if there are issues you would like DPCAC to address or if you would like details and an invitation to a DPCAC meeting.