Industry News

Introducing FastPAC™ Platinum: Next Generation Powdered Activated Carbon Engineered for Mercury Control

ADA Carbon Solutions is committed to helping coal-fired power plants comply with mercury regulation in the most reliable and cost-effective way. We understand that each power plant has unique characteristics that must be considered in engineering the most optimal PAC and that the impact of that solution on the balance of the plant is an important consideration.

That is why we collaborate with customers to engineer the best overall solution to complex air quality control challenges. We began in 2011, by introducing our FastPAC™ line of products which demonstrated up to 60% improvement over the first generation PACs used for mercury capture.

Since then, we have continued to improve our performance for cement compatibility, performance in higher temperatures and compatibility in a variety of flue gas environments.

Our ongoing efforts have come together to create another step change in performance. These products are called FastPAC™ Platinum.

Maximizing Contact, Conversion, and Capture.

ADA Carbon Solutions takes a scientific approach toward product design with a focus on maximizing the contact, conversion, and capture of mercury. As a result, performance is reliable and consistent over time and minimizes balance of plant concerns.

3X Improved Mercury Removal Capability

Our patent-pending FastPAC™ Platinum line of products have up to 3+ times mercury removal capability as demonstrated in our proprietary Dynamic Mercury Index test compared to FastPAC™ Premium.

38% Reduction in PAC Usage WITH DSI

FastPAC™ Platinum reduced PAC usage by 38% at a 600-megawatt midwest utility using sodium-based DSI.

80+% HG Removal in Presence of High SO3

FastPAC™ Platinum 80 is designed for high concentrations of SO3 in flue gas. It has demonstrated 80+% mercury removal at SO3 levels up to 25 ppm.

To learn more about FastPAC™ Platinum and get in touch with one of our compliance experts with your questions, be sure to visit our powdered activated carbon product page.

PACS Activated Carbon Hall of Fame Award: Joe Wong

PACS Invitation 38th International Activated Carbon Conference
September 15-16, 2016 and Carbon Courses September 12-18

At this year’s PACS International Activated Carbon Conference two valued members of the carbon industry will receive the PACS Activated Carbon Hall of Fame award.

Joe Wong, Chief Technology Scientist from ADA Carbon Solutions will be a recipient of this esteemed award and will also present a lecture lecture entitled “Custom Designing Activated Carbons for Removing Mercury from Coal-fired Power Plants.”

Every September near Pittsburgh PA activated carbon experts to beginners share information to grow the size, quality, and new applications for the activated carbon industry through the International Activated Carbon Conference and Activated Carbon School. Optional carbon courses are provided to accelerate individual knowledge on activated carbons.

Please see the Registration Form for schedules and details.

Activated Carbon User Group 2016 in Milwaukee, WI

The date is officially set for this year’s Activated Carbon User Group. As you make plans for 2016, be sure to set aside September 13-15 to attend the 6th annual Activated Carbon User Group.

There is no fee to attend, and the event is a great opportunity to connect with experts and peers who are working to ensure reliable long-term mercury compliance. In the coming weeks, we’ll follow-up with more information on speakers, sessions, and topics.

Activated Carbon User Group 2016
Milwaukee, WI
September 13 – 15

If you own or operate a coal-fueled power plant, join us at the 2016 Activated Carbon User Group. Get insight into real-time MATS compliance, study strategies for long-term compliance strategy, and connect with the people & resources you need to achieve and maintain your goals.

Milwaukee, WI – a Top Travel City

This year’s event will be held in Milwaukee, one of the most popular travel cities in the country, and a top location for business travelers. We’re busy planning events and entertainment for the conference, but you can read through some of these articles to get a taste of what to expect.

The Lonely Planet has rated Milwaukee as the #10 Best in the US – Most unexpectedly exciting places to see in the US in 2016.

The Boston Globe has Milwaukee as their #3 Hot Places for Travel in 2016.

The New York Post has an article dated 8/17/2015 “5 Reasons Milwaukee is the Best City in the Midwest.

American Express Traveler has Milwaukee as #6 on its Top 10 Most Popular Cities to Visit this Summer dated May 11, 2015 (by the way Pensacola FL was ranked at #9).

Register Today »

Build A Reliable Mercury Compliance Supply Chain

With all the uncertainty coal-fired power plants face, how can you ever find peace-of-mind with your MATS compliance strategy?

Reliability has always been an important term in the power industry. As the operation and utilization of coal-fired power has come under greater pressure, the demand for supply chain reliability has evolved to include responsiveness. Today more than ever, coal fired power plants are under pressure, caught between higher cost of operation and lower electricity prices.

This has led many power plants to operate more seasonally, producing and selling power when prices justify it. Coal-fired plants that have historically been base load units are now often operating in response to sometimes sudden and unanticipated peaks in demand and pricing creating new operational challenges.

That’s why we’ve created this go-to strategy guide to educate utilities on the best strategies to secure a reliable supply chain.

“During last year’s polar vortex, demand for our units skyrocketed. This resulted in us consuming 4 times the normal amount of PAC over a several week period. Fortunately, ADA Carbon Solutions had the supply chain network in place to respond. They did not miss a shipment, despite our dramatic increase in demand, and we were able to remain on-line without interruption.” – Midwest Utility Customer

Supply Chain Assurance

Many powdered activated carbon users worry about the supply / demand relationship that is expected to evolve over the next two years as the industry as a whole becomes compliant with MATS. While many of these discussions focus on aggregate demand and supply scenarios on an annual basis the real risk is more seasonally driven and requires a more granular analysis.

Savvy carbon buyers recognize this risk and include a detailed assessment of the supply chain for each of their prospective carbon providers as part of their assessment and buying decision.

Learn more about the best methods to secure a reliable supply chain in our supply chain assurance guide.

Mercury Capture in High SO₃ Environments

It is well known that sulfur trioxide (SO₃) impairs the mercury capture performance of powdered activated carbons. When in the presence of high SO₃ levels, early generation PACs have a limited ability to contact mercury particles, convert them into an oxidized state, and capture them for removal.

In response to this challenge, you can leverage new technology that outperforms traditional solutions in the presence of high sulfur trioxide levels. Our team has extensively researched new PAC technologies that can help you achieve compliance reliably and cost-effectively in the presence of SO3.

Don’t Let SO3 Put You At Risk For Non-Compliance

New PAC technology is capable of improving mercury capture by 80% over traditional products in the presence of SO₃ thanks to our stepwise mechanistic advancements. We have experience on full-scale EGU’s where SO₃ was present at levels above 50 ppm. You can learn more about how we’ve achieved these advancements by accessing the research at ComplianceCampus.

Learn more about how we’ve achieved these advancements by accessing our free research at ComplianceCampus.

Fly Ash Consistency: The Key to Fly Ash Re-selling

Ash disposal costs for power generators and combustors are rising as a result of new rules and requirements from the EPA. Sale of fly ash for beneficial use offers utilities an opportunity to avoid high landfill costs and in many cases create a separate revenue stream.

However, demand for ash in the cement industry falls well short of the amount produced every year creating a market where the fly ash brokers can be selective in terms of fly ash quality and consistency.

We have had ongoing collaboration efforts with many current utilities selling their ash along with fly ash marketing companies. It has become clear that the highest priority for gaining reliable sales of fly ash is fly ash consistency.

We have designed PAC products that are optimized for properties important to achieve sellable ash, but as or maybe even more importantly, help the utility achieve those desirable ash properties consistently over time.

In this presentation, we will walk you through the many drivers and specifics required by these buyers. We can help you optimize ash quality and ensure consistency so that the marketability of your fly ash is preserved.

Quality and Consistency: The Keys to Preserving Ash Marketability

Advanced products have been engineered to provide greater responsiveness and reactivity for mercury capture. As a result, many customers operate with static or consistent injection rates and those that modify injection rates to manage fuel variability or other emission control challenges find that smaller modifications in injection rate are needed to impact mercury emissions. What all this means to the utility is more consistent carbon content in the fly ash and more reliable ash quality to the fly ash broker.

ADA Carbon Solutions has experience and research from dozens of plants who have addressed this challenge. If you are interested in learning more about our Quality and Consistency programs refer to this presentation on Compliance Campus – our resource library designed to store and distribute best practices and lessons learned from hundreds of full-scale plant tests and commercial deployments.


Testing PAC Performance for Mercury Compliance on Cemnet

US cement plants are now under pressure due to recent legislation. Many plants are now scrambling to tighten up their mercury control procedures. Luckily, ADA Carbon Solutions’ Dynamic Mercury Index test has been developed to ensure consistent quality of sorbents used in activated carbon injection.


Standard industry tests for activated carbon are not specifically adapted for mercury control applications. The Dynamic Mercury Index test is developed to specifically measure PAC performance in mercury control use cases.

You can learn more about Dynamic Mercury Control and how it can deliver better results for your plant in this paper by Chris Vizcaino and Sheila Glesmann hosted on

The US Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) mercury (Hg) limit is regulated to 55lb Hg/Mt clinker on a 30-day rolling average. To stay in compliance with these limits, many cement plants carry out dry injection of powdered activated carbon (PAC) into the flue gas stream in a process known as activated carbon injection (ACI).

Each cement plant comes with its own set of unique challenges and the Dynamic Mercury Index test provides the findings necessary to make mercury compliance performance tweaks specific to your application.

To get full access to our paper on Dynamic Mercury Control and learn how to best test your mercury compliance systems, head over to where our article is being featured.

ADA Carbon Solutions Focuses on Leadership in MATS Compliance with Key Promotions within its Research and Development Department

ADA Carbon Solutions is expanding its investment in RnD while recognizing the significant achievements of key leaders in activated carbon research and commercialization.

Littleton, Colorado, June 15, 2014 – ADA Carbon Solutions, LLC , an industry leading manufacturer of powdered activated carbon, is pleased to announce three significant promotions, signifying advancements in product leadership for mercury control.

Ariel Li has been promoted to Lead Research Scientist.  Ms. Li joined ADA in 2012 after graduating from Iowa State University with a Masters in Materials Science and Engineering.  Since joining the R&D team, she has distinguished herself with contributions to a number of key projects including the development and commercialization of an advanced carbon product for the removal of mercury from wet scrubbers, the development of novel non-halogen technology, and several other advancements.  According to Dr. Joe Wong, Chief Technology Officer, “Ariel’s strong technical approach and persistence in problem solving have made her a leader in the R&D group.  At this critical juncture for our business growth, her contributions have significant impact.”

Ross True has been promoted to Lead Technician.  Mr. True joined the R&D team at ADA in 2013 after previous experience with Coors Brewing and Johns Manville as a lab technician.  He obtained degrees in Biology from Metropolitan State University as well in Religious Studies from the University of Wisconsin.  He has made significant contributions toward improvements in the safety, reliability, and efficiency of the R&D lab in Littleton, including development and implementation of inventory and sample management systems, storage and waste handling, and fellow technician training.  In addition to his in-lab assignments in advancing our carbon technologies, he is currently leading the design and implementation of a LIMS system to manage QC and R&D data acquisition and retrieval.  Dr. Roger Cayton, Senior R&D Director, added “Ross has added rigor to our laboratory techniques and data management that facilitate a smooth transition to the significant scale-up of products currently underway.  As our customers require more product and a high-degree of quality control, these core skills are key to our business success.”

Christopher Vizcaino has been promoted to Lead Research Chemist.  Mr. Vizcaino is a graduate of Metropolitan State University with a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry and began his career with ADA Carbon Solutions in 2010 after working with ADA-ES for two years.  “Chris was instrumental in setting up the QC lab and quality system at the Red River plant as well as the R&D lab in Littleton,” said Dr. Wong.  “As the lead designer and developer of our lab scale Dynamic Mercury Index capture test, he has applied it towards performance improvements within our current product line as well as to rapid prototype development of new enhanced carbon materials, and has continued to develop it to be a valuable tool to our customers.”  Currently, he is leading R&D efforts in the area of next-generation advanced carbons for challenging utility flue gas emission systems.

“These three researchers have demonstrated both product leadership and application expertise throughout their time at ADA,” added Dr. Wong, “this is the goal of our R&D culture, and we commend their achievements.  We have a strong team to continue rapidly commercializing new products to address our customers’ compliance needs.  We look forward to their contributions in continuing to shape the future of mercury control.”

About ADA Carbon Solutions

ADA Carbon Solutions, LLC is a leading manufacturer of powdered activated carbon products that are optimized for mercury removal and flue gas applications.  Its flagship plant in Red River Louisiana is the largest, most automated and environmentally friendly activated carbon production facility in North America.  ADA Carbon Solutions aims to leverage its industry leading expertise in emission control and the reliability afforded by its assets to deliver superior emission control solutions.


Electric Power Conference 2015


The ADA Carbon Solutions team will be attending this year’s Electric Power Conference and Expo in Rosemont, IL. The Electric Power conference brings together more power generators in one place than any other conference in the country!

Join us at booth 134 to meet and chat with the ADA Carbon Solutions team. You can also visit our speaking session on Innovative Approaches to using DSI & Baghouses.

Session 2F: Innovative Approaches to using DSI & Baghouses.
Talk: Pilot High-Sulfur TOXECON Baghouse with Activated Carbon Injection
Sarah McMurray, Application Technologist
4/23 | 8:30AM – 10:00AM | Room 1

We’re excited to connect with power generators from around the country and discuss our unique and reliable solutions for bringing utilities into compliance with the EPA’s mercury and air toxics regulations. If you are also attending, you can schedule a time to connect with one of our experts and discuss your MATS compliance challenges.

Fill out the form below so we can set aside time to talk about your plant’s unique challenges when it comes to mercury compliance.

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