The new Process Atrato ultrasonic flowmeter

A new flowmeter for small bore liquid flows has been introduced Titan Enterprises, an enterprising British company, who are a long established manufacturer of liquid flowmeter systems. Their first ultrasonic meter was introduced in around 2010, after a long development programme in co-operation with Prof Mike Sanderson at Cranfield University, and was called the Atrato. This unit was launched for the typical markets served by Titan, of laboratory testing, drinks dispensing, cooling systems, pilot plants, fuel cells, pharmaceutical applications and OEMs – and offered a 200:1 turndown, 1% accurate obstructionless straight through meter with a 4-20mA output. Materials were mainly PEEK and borosilicate glass or stainless steel for the flow tube, but the BSP or NPT male fittings were available in stainless steel. A very clever and high performance flowmeter for flows up to 20 Litres/min.

The Launch in 2010

Regrettably, while having worked with Titan for many years prior to 2010 on their PR and promotion, a high flying expensive agency was brought in to promote the Atrato, so it disappeared off my radar. I should not say much about whether it has been seen by anyone else since then, because I don’t have any info: but why are you reading this?

Now a new launch has been announced by Titan, of the Process Atrato flowmeter: a new version of the basic flowmeter, now ‘packaged for the process and control environment’.

The Titan Atrato for the Process Industry

atrat

This unit is built from 316 stainless steel and PEEK, plus an elastomer seal to suit the application, and has the on-board electronics sealed to IP65. From the photo you can see that the threads into the stainless steel process connection (at the top of the flowmeter) are female. The lower screw thread is for an M12 four pin electrical connector. The unit is suitable for 65 Celcius and 25 bar process conditions: the non-process Atrato can operate up to 110C if the electronics is installed remotely, so presumably this might be a future development. Flow range covered is 2mL/min to 15 Litres/min, using four flowtube sizes.

Each of the four models covering the different flow ranges is configured to offer the same pre-set ‘K-factor’, which is quoted to assist OEM use and interchangeability: but it also highlights that the electronic output available on these “process units” is a PNP and an alternative NPN pulse train, quoted as a ‘frequency’ output. Presumably this relates back to the pulse output style as was provided by the other Titan turbine and positive displacement flowmeter sensors. A separate power supply, from 8-24VDC, is used to power the unit.

A few criticisms

The other surprise for me was that the meter is pictured, and obviously intended for installation, ‘upside down’, with the electrical connections and housing below the flow line. When this Process Atrato is really an equivalent to a thermal mass style gas flowmeter application, but on liquids, you would think it would be sensible to have it looking similar to these other, well-known gas flow devices. The reason for this cannot be that it needs to allow entrained air to escape, as the flow tube is just a straight tube, with no complicated connections which might trap anything.

For the engineers who can see through these confusion factors, the device is a very effective flowmeter, 200:1 turndown, +/-1% accuracy over 2-100% of range, while working with viscous as well as non-viscous fluids – with the standard Atrato features of linearity, no moving parts and fast response time. Plus the PR says it will offer a ‘reduced cost of ownership’, but does not specify what this is compared with…..surely the point is that there is not much else on offer to provide this performance, except maybe a micro-Coriolis meter.

If Only….

The pity is, ever since launching the Bestobell Doppler flowmeter in 1976, and the Platon Kat in 1998, I’ve been looking forward to being involved in the launch a decent ultrasonic flowmeter for clean liquid process applications…..

Copper ore conveyor system by ABB

ABB is to supply one of the world’s most powerful and complex automated conveyor belt systems for the Chuquicamata Copper Mine in Chile. The belt system will operate at highest levels of availability and efficiency, to deliver copper ore from the underground mine directly to the concentrator plant, which is located 13 km from the mine site.

The final conveyor system will be one of the world’s largest, covering both steep gradients and long distances, with conveyor flights using up to 20 MW of power, and 55 MW used in the total system – the amount of energy typically needed to power 41,000 homes. In the final stage the system will transport over 11,000 tons of material per hour, the same amount that would fill around 158 freight wagon trains.

Conveyor+belt_lores

A conveyor belt similar to this will be used at the Chiqui mine

Major capacity expansion

The order won by ABB is for a complete power and automation solution: the project includes gearless drives, motors, instrumentation and power product supply. The equipment will be custom engineered to on-site requirements, in order to optimally power, control, measure and actuate the conveyor system. The belt power and automation will be fully integrated through the flagship ABB control system, 800xA, combined with the ABB Mining Conveyor Control Program, to ensure optimum power quality and control across the entire system.

Chuquicamata is one of the largest open pit copper mines, and the second deepest open-pit mine in the world: it is located 1,650km north of Santiago, Chile. Popularly known as ‘Chuqui’, the mine has been operating since 1910. It is owned and operated by Codelco, the world’s leading copper producer. A new underground mine is being developed at Chuquicamata to access the ore body situated beneath the present open pit mine. The new mine is scheduled to begin operations in 2019, and will significantly expand the output from the area.

“With mineral deposits becoming increasingly complex and more remote, our power and automation solutions can help customers become more efficient and optimize their operations enabling them to increase efficiency with less maintenance costs” said Roger Bailey, Head of the ABB Process Industries business. “We are delighted to support Codelco in their aim to be the leading copper supplier across the world.”

The gearless drive is key

A key feature of the solution to be provided by ABB is the gearless conveyor drive system. This is a state of the art solution that will meet the extremely high load requirements and the necessary power availability at the site: this would not have been achievable with a conventional drive solution.

This gearless conveyor drive system eliminates the gearbox from the motor, thus significantly reducing the number of main wear parts, resulting in less maintenance and ensuring a longer lifespan of the system. Another advantage is a considerable reduction in the drive system footprint and the amount of instrumentation required.

Power and water for the developing world

In the Journal ‘South African Instrumentation and Control’ I provide a regular column  giving some commentary on the I&C scene as seen from Europe, wherever possible referring to items that could be of relevance to their South African readers. This was the story published in the May 2016 issue.

Some of the products created for the consumers in the developed world have had perhaps surprising benefits in the less well-developed countries too. One example has been the use of mobile phones throughout Africa, enabling the development of a simple banking and payment system.

But there are other engineering developments that are specifically designed for use by people living far from the normal facilities offered in an urban setting, and many universities, philanthropists and aid organisations are active in supporting these ideas. desolenatorOne such development idea from the UK is known as a ‘Desolenator’. This is a portable, solar-powered water purification system, designed to produce clean drinking water, starting from seawater, or polluted groundwater. The device is the size of a flat-screen TV and is equipped with rugged all-terrain wheels to assist transport: it can produce 15 litres of distilled drinking water per day, enough for one family to use for drinking and cooking.

The device uses a solar panel to produce electricity: a thin layer of the water to be treated flows over the photovoltaic surface, absorbing the heat also produced by the sun, and cooling the panels to improve their efficiency. The heated water passes into a boiler, powered by the electrical output from the panel: the steam is condensed to produce distilled water, giving up its latent heat to the incoming water flow. A small drain from the boiler discharges a concentrated dirty liquid stream.

The Desolenator device is claimed to have a life of 20 years, and requires little maintenance: it has recently won two Innovation Award prizes from the UK’s Institute of Engineering Technology.

Further harnessing solar power

Whilst the Desolenator shows one potential application of solar power, making electric power available from such a widely available source is a major objective in both the developed and under-developed world. This is particularly needed in areas without any other source of power at night, when it is dark, which is a slight problem. How can children do their homework, or study anything, without some light?

In the developed world there is a need to store the power generated by wind farms and solar farms, to make it available in periods of high demand, or when the wind or sun are not there. So there is a lot of research into storing large amounts of power. Hopefully some of this might spin-off and make smaller domestic or small village units available soon.

csm_Photoelektrochemie_219a069346At the Technical University of Vienna (TU Wien), current research is following the principles of photochemical cells, as used in nature, where plants absorb sunlight and store this energy chemically. The main problem was that quoted above, in relation to the Desolenator design, that at high temperatures, the efficiency of any current photovoltaic solar cell decreases. While the electrical energy produced by a solar cell can be used in an electrochemical cell to split water into hydrogen and oxygen, the energy efficiency of this process is limited, because of the high temperatures involved.

At TU Wien researchers have now developed new highly specialised materials, which form a photovoltaic that operates at a high temperature (400°C), so concentrated light beams can be used to produce a large energy output: currently achieving 920 mV. These cells use Perovskite metal oxide materials in the photovoltaic, which creates free charge carriers – electrons – that travel into the electrochemical cell. Here they ionise oxygen into negative ions, which can travel through a membrane, separating hydrogen and oxygen. Work continues to increase the power further and produce an industrial prototype, where a hydrogen cell would be used later to produce on-demand electrical power.

Other techniques

More conventional techniques, such as those having banks of rechargeable batteries, and even mechanical flywheel systems, are being installed in areas where short-term interruptions in supplies are common. But the spin-off from such university research will eventually lead to novel ideas to help the less-developed world as well.

Robotic welders use cables from igus

igus advise that sales of their ‘readycable‘ for use on the welding arms of robotic welders are booming! Such robotic welding systems are now widely used in large scale automated manufacturing facilities, particularly in the automotive industry.  Faced with cost-down pressures from their customers, small metalworking job shops are now starting to consider implementing automation.  When the operating costs of robotic welding are compared to manual welding the results are clearly in favour of the robot.  Additional benefits of automating are increased productivity, more consistent welded joints and improved quality.

Cyber-Weld, a Warwickshire based provider of robotic welding solutions, provides a simple cost analysis to its potential customers.  Using manual welding, the overhead burdened cost is around GBP35k per annum for a single shift, with an average “Arc On” time of 25%.  The average robot “Arc On” time is 75%, three times that of a manual welder, resulting in an additional 200% production capability.  With an entry level robot and operator costs of GBP17.5k, the payback time is less than 12 months.

Potential users do have concerns though.  How easy are they to program?  Where to find trained staff to operate them?  How reliable are the robots?

Choosing the right supplier – as a partner

When choosing a partner, reputation should always be the first consideration.  A reliable partner must provide advice on which robot to select and be able to provide a full turn-key solution with support from the initial inquiry through to the installation.  Prompt delivery, machine commissioning, employee training, trouble shooting, repair and offering regular system overhauls are other key factors.  Look for a company that is a strategic partner for one or more of the leading robot manufacturers.

unnamed (1)

Justin Leonard of igus receives the 10,000th order for readycable, from Fraser Reid, MD of Cyber-Weld

Cyber-Weld regularly uses igus as a supplier and partner for cable assemblies on their robotic welding machines for the same reasons and has bought over 100 readycable drive cables.  Cyber-Weld’s latest purchase marked a milestone for igus; being the 10,000th order for the product series.  These highly flexible cables provide power and signals to the robotic head, grippers or other attachments and are usually mounted externally to the robotic arm.  Particularly on a 6-axis robot, this cable is subject to a great deal of rigorous movement, which can lead to premature failure if incorrectly specified.

“We expect the cables to outlive the mission time of the installed robotic system, which is approximately 10 to 15 years,” stated Mike Jones, General Manager, of Cyber-Weld.  “igus is always helpful and is happy to come onsite to look at our requirements, which is a big plus factor for us.  A local supplier with a good reputation, igus also helps us shorten our lead-times.”

Reliable, tested cables

The readycable assembled drive cables series has bending radius from 7.5 x od.  Harnessed cables are tested in igus e-chain cable carriers through many millions of cycles. There is a choice of servo cables, signal cables and feeder cables with a total of seven cable quality levels for the same electrical requirement, offering an affordable and durable solution for all applications.  The readycable assembled drive cables also have a number of certifications and regulatory conformities including UL, CSA, CE Desina.  These extremely reliable cables are designed for high stress applications and are also available with flame and oil resistance.

It is no contradiction to say that good cables cost less.  Fast delivery throughout the world is a significant purchase criterion, and igus can provide that with a presence and stock in more than 40 countries. This saves time, money, part storage capacity and is applicable to 1,040 igus cable types, which can be ordered without any minimum quantity purchases or surcharges.

In the igus test facility in Cologne, numerous parallel tests are conducted under the most severe conditions. Presently more than 2 billion double strokes and 1.4 million electrical tests are carried out per year, with the test results stored in an extensive data-base, providing precise and reliable data about actual service life. The test data for e-chain, cables, and also for ready-assembled systems, are so extensive that igus has secured a functional guarantee for its variety of e-chain systems based on the particular application.

The igus reputation appreciated by Cyber-Weld comes from this extensive testing and more than 25-years of industry experience in continuous-flex cable.  Further information and the on-line readycable product finder can be found on the igus website, including searches by machine producer and cable type.

[The names readycable and e-chain are trademarks of igus]

Cascade Technologies: the background…

From the Insider Newsletter files: this is a background commentary article on the Emerson acquisition of Cascade Technologies, written back in December 2014. This article was published in the INSIDER Newsletter (www.iainsider.com) in January 2015.

TXT 3 Cascade logo

Cascade Technologies is a leading Scottish manufacturer of gas analysers and monitoring systems using their own Quantum Cascade Laser (QCL) technology, which can measure multiple gas compositions simultaneously. Their products help improve industrial emissions monitoring, production efficiencies and environmental compliance in various industries – such as petrochemical, food and beverage, marine, automotive and pharmaceutical.

The acquisition will expand the Emerson analytical monitoring capabilities by adding this innovative laser technology to its Rosemount Analytical gas analysis portfolio.  Tom Moser, group vice president of the Emerson Process Management measurement and analytical businesses, said “The acquisition of Cascade Technologies is an exciting step as we further strengthen our gas analysis portfolio. Customers depend upon Emerson to solve their toughest analytical measurement problems. We are now better positioned to serve that need.” Emerson considers that QCL technology has introduced a step change in gas analyser performance through its increased sensitivity, speed of response, and fingerprinting capability.

Dr. Iain Howieson, chief executive officer of Cascade Technologies, added: “Joining a global leader like Emerson represents an incredible opportunity for business growth. The Emerson global presence and market leadership will have an immediate impact on the adoption of our cutting edge QCL gas analysers and monitoring systems.”

The growth of Cascade Technology

Cascade Technologies is now based in Stirling in Scotland, and was established in Glasgow in 2003, based on their novel technology. They appear to employ over 40 people, and have over 500 analysers in the field. Initially the product was targeted at marine emission monitoring analysis for the monitoring and control of flue gases and emissions, to meet MARPOL and EPA regulations: by 2009 their product was established in this application and sales supply agreements were signed with both a partner covering the marine emissions monitoring market, and another covering flue gas setting analysers for domestic boiler production. The next year saw the start of sales of their aerosol leak detection system, and an exclusive supply agreement with a supplier of automotive test equipment. The CT3000 multi-component gas analyser for automotive emissions testing achieved sales of 200 units within 24 months

TXT 3 CT2100 on-stack gas analyser

Cascade CT2100 on-stack gas analyser

The last three years have seen rapid acceptance of the QCL technology in the pharmaceutical leak detection market, and the process industry, with the first process analytics QCL analyser at an ethylene production plant in the UK. This has also been used for natural gas moisture measurement applications. The analyser is also used for Continuous Emissions Monitoring Systems (CEMS) for industrial gaseous effluent emissions: for example they consider that typically there would be 15 CEMS on each refinery in the USA. The whole installation of a single CEMS would cost $200k-400k, and 30% of this historically has been for the analyser.

Cascade appear to have several boom areas for the application of their technologies.

Cascade QCL technology

The Cascade technology is based on a principle called Tunable Diode Laser Absorption Spectroscopy (TDLAS), which can measure the concentration of gas species in gaseous mixtures, using light from tunable diode lasers and laser spectrometry to make measurements of the absorption at various wavelengths. In comparison to other analytical techniques such as paramagnetic detectors (PMD) and chemi-luminescence, TDLAS offers multi-element capabilities, high accuracy with a wide dynamic range, low maintenance, and a long life cycle. Lasers offer high resolution spectroscopy: QCL techniques offer use of the valuable mid infrared (MIR) part of the electromagnetic spectrum.

The advantage of QCL is that it avoids any need for cryogenic cooling and gas lasers. QCL uses semiconductor materials having a series of quantum wells, so that higher power emission can be produced. In addition the lasing wavelength is not determined by the material itself, but by the physical thickness of the semiconductor layers. The patented Cascade Laser CHIRP technique enables the detector to work in the MHz region, with high speed room temperature detectors.

The result is a solid state compact design, giving reliability and easy integration: the technique competes strongly with gas chromatography, ion mobility spectrometry, and mass sensitive detector techniques. The Cascade development of multi-component TDLAS analyser platforms (capable of measuring up to 20 different gases in one instrument), allows a single multi-component analyser to replace multiple analysers in the field (for example those previously based on NDIR, chemi-luminescence). The QCL technology provides significant advantages in production throughput, accuracy and cost.

Hybrid Laser Continuous Gas Analyser

Emerson has announced the release of the Rosemount CT5100 continuous gas analyser, the world’s only hybrid analyser to combine Tunable Diode Laser (TDL) and Quantum Cascade Laser (QCL) measurement technologies for process gas analysis and emissions monitoring. The CT5100 is the latest offering in the Emerson CT5000 series, providing the most comprehensive analysis available as it can detect down to sub ppm level for a range of components, while simplifying operation and significantly reducing costs. Unlike traditional continuous gas analysers, the CT5100 can measure up to 12 critical component gases and potential pollutants simultaneously within a single system – meeting local, national, and international regulatory requirements.

The CT5100 was first shown at the Emerson European Exchange in Brussels, last month, and is one of several new developments to be launched this year, following the acquisition of the company Cascade Technologies, of Stirling in Scotland in December 2014.

QCL-Image-CT5100-Ex-160420

The CT5100 operates reliably with no consumables, no in-field enclosure, and a simplified sampling system that does not require any gas conditioning to remove moisture. The new gas analyser is ideally suited for process gas analysis, continuous emissions monitoring, and ammonia slip applications.

“The increase in regulatory requirements worldwide, along with the decrease in experienced personnel in industrial plants, have paved the way for the emergence of a new generation of faster, more accurate, and easier-to-use measurement technologies,” said Ruth Lindley, product manager for QCL analysers at Emerson. “The CT5100 represents an important next step in that direction, providing unmatched sub-second response time for precise, reliable measurement of complex gases and emissions to ensure regulatory compliance and prevent costly fines or unexpected shutdowns.”

The CT5100 is a unique combination of advanced technology, high reliability, and rugged design. Its ‘laser chirp’ technique expands gas analysis in both the near- and mid-infrared range, enhancing process insight, improving overall gas analysis sensitivity and selectivity, removing cross interference, and reducing response time. The laser chirp technique produces sharp, well-defined peaks from high resolution spectroscopy that enable specificity of identified components with minimum interference and without filtration, reference cells, or chemometric manipulations.

“The CT5100 modular design and patented ability to chirp up to six lasers in one enclosure provides greatly expanded measurement capability as well as superior analyser availability and lower maintenance costs,” said Dave McMillen, North America business development manager. “Start-up and commissioning is quick and maintaining the analyser requires minimal technician time and material cost.”

For more information on the CT5100 analyser, go to www.EmersonProcess.com/GasAnalysis/QCL.

@ProcessingTalk

(c) ProcessingTalk.info

My worst week as an air traveller

A busy flight schedule last week started well: the Monday morning flight to Brussels was OK! After two days at the press conference for the Emerson Exchange European event in the ‘Cube’ in Brussels, which included an enjoyable afternoon seeing the sights around the Grand Square in Brussels city centre, all that was needed was to catch a flight back to Heathrow on Tuesday night: I needed to get home, to then do a quick turn-round and head to Gatwick on Wednesday, to then catch a lunchtime flight Thursday for Cancun in Mexico. This was our holiday trip to visit my son in Mahahual, way South of Cancun, where he lives and works as a fishing guide – so holidays tend to be visits to see him.

A quick trip to Brussels

The taxi ride for a colleague and myself out to Brussels Airport was a nightmare:  we had left Brussels city centre with 3.5 hours available before the 2130 flight time. There were jams on the motorways all the way, and then the slip road to the airport was closed off by the Police. Eventually we discovered from other drivers, and then the Internet, that a suspect vehicle had been seen on one airport approach road, so the airport had been closed, and all current flights cancelled.

Return to Brussels centre?

OK so turn the taxi round, head back for Brussels and try to catch the Eurostar home. Bad traffic again, which made the task of connecting with the last train of the evening, leaving at 2030 approx, impossible. No matter, colleagues in Emerson could book us a room for the night, and we could fly home Wednesday morning! But wait, the Internet now says Brussels airport is now open! Flights are leaving! OK, turn the taxi round, again, from half way back to the town centre, and go back to the airport! No jams now, although the taxi drop off point is Floor 3 of the multi-storey car park. Possibly the taxi driver was happy, as he had a fare of 2.5x the normal airport taxi cost. Maybe he is part of the evolving conspiracy against getting us home?

Fast track departure through the chicanes

Following the suicide bombings at Brussels Airport, in the Departure lounge, there have been some recent re-adjustments to the departure route for passengers, to get the airport operating again. These mean that from the public taxi drop-off point then you walk down the ramps from the car park to the ground floor, pass a couple of 7 foot tall Belgian Army Commandos, and zig-zag thru an entrance route to get to a big reception tent. Here Police and Army boarding card/e-ticket and passport checks only let passengers through into a long baggage screening and metal detector search area, protected by several concrete barriers. Sounds good, and is effective. And as Eoin O’Riain comments, the document checks were all very friendly, helpful (and multi-lingual) and good natured. Then you get to the check in area in another big tent structure, with lots of people – but there are still some automated boarding pass machines. We got thru those, to gain a boarding card each and proceeded to enter the real building, moving quickly now because it was getting late: this meant going up three flights of concrete stairs, emergency exit type, to get up to the third floor again, and the real pax screening.

Thru the ticket check and baggage x-ray, and metal detectors again, and into the departure area. All the time everything had looked OK: but only here did we see a flight departure info screen in English, to discover that our flight was cancelled, because not wanting to get left out of the misery stakes the Belgian air traffic controllers had decided they didn’t like all this hassle of getting to work, and went on strike!

Turn again, back to Brussels centre?

What to do now? Well let’s ask the airline, Brussels Airlines. Some passing local staff told us there was a Brussels Airlines desk in the actual departure gate area, which was the place to go for help. This meant going thru passport control, and then walking the full length of the departure terminal again, to reach the desk at the far end.

Here a very helpful lady said the Air Traffic Controllers would be back at work at 10pm, so our flight could not go because it was scheduled for 2130. Why 10pm? She did not know, but said they always come back then, maybe they get a higher pay rate after 10pm, maybe the pubs close then, who knows? So we were re-allocated seats and a boarding card for the 1100 flight the next morning, and given a Hotel room and a meal voucher for the night.

All we needed to do now was walk all the way round the terminal again, find the exit into the car park, and this time wait for a courtesy bus to get us to the Hotel. Here it is worth commenting that the Belgian Hotel staff were very sympathetic, and had no respect for the air traffic controllers who for personal gain were piling more inconvenience onto those travellers who had shown solidarity with the city, and refused to delay or cancel their travel plans. Next morning , back to the airport for a repeat of the check-in procedure, up the stairs, thru checks etc, only to discover the boarding cards did not scan properly, so we had to go thru another repeat, to re-issue these boarding cards (on a better printer) at a very busy Brussels Airlines desk, which thank goodness was a quick and easy process.

On to Cancun, we thought….

Thursday morning saw my wife and I at Gatwick, looking to fly to Mexico on Virgin Atlantic. In fact the flight was Virgin VS093, on 14 April 2016. A nice flight, we’ve used this route before, on a big Boeing 747 Jumbo jet. Gatwick was crowded, and the flight was delayed by nearly an hour, boarding about 1300. Not too many passengers on board, so we could spread out a bit.

After about 4 hours, the hostesses brought several families with young children into our seating area and put them into some rows of spare seats – I thought maybe this was to let the kids lie down. Then it became obvious that there was something else going on, when the Tannoy system made some form of an announcement, finishing with an audible bit that said “We will be arriving in New York in 2 hours”. The flight map also showed that the plane was heading west for New York, having previously been heading southwest, over the Atlantic off the coast of Labrador. First of all you panic, thinking you are on the wrong plane. Then you think there must be some problem with it……

Just another drunken Brit!

It transpired, with a further announcement, that a passenger, a member of the stag party heading for Cancun, had been abusive and threatening to the Virgin staff and some passengers, and generally disruptive. He “needed to be restrained by the airline staff”, and would be kept under restraint in the aircraft until he could be off-loaded into the care of the authorities at New York.

The plane did a straight in approach to JFK Airport in New York, and in the words of the crew was “held at the edge of the airport for the authorities to board”. The authorities were about six burly policemen, who removed the offender, but then spent about an hour taking statements and info from those who had witnessed the events. Eventually we arrived in Cancun, 3 hours later than planned, which messed up most people’s onward travel arrangements. The rest of the stag party also disembarked, all looking a bit daft in their matching baseball hats and T-shirts.

What happened to the offender, left in New York? Maybe from there he will have to travel home by sea, in a container preferably: he certainly will never fly again, and probably it will take a few years before he has paid off the landing fees for a Jumbo to visit JFK, just to drop him off. I hope he was not the Groom!

[Note: This story is published after our return home, to hail and wet UK snow on the road back from Gatwick, a significant contrast to the 30-40C temperatures experienced in Playa Del Carmen, Akumel, Tulum, Chetumal and Mahahual]

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