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Tests Process to Stop Fumes (June 11, 1926)

Air Purification Expert Soon to Eliminate Obnoxious Odors in Artificial Silk Plant.

Fumes with the odor of decomposed eggs, which have disturbed housewives in the southwest section of the city for months, are about to be ended.

Final tests are now under way at the plant of the Industrial Fibre Corporation, Walford Ave. and W. 98th Street of two processes, one of which will soon be chosen to end the nuisance. Dr. R. D. McLaurin, city air purification expert, announced yesterday. Both processes work equally well, Dr. McLaurin said. The one which is shown to be the most economical will be selected.

Come From Silk Factory

The fumes are from hydrogen sulphide, and are emitted in the manufacture of artificial silk, the process which imitates in a modern manufacturing plant the endless labors of the silk worm.

Two processes are now under consideration, one worked out by Dr. McLaurin, the other by plant officials.

The latter is now under test.

Dr. McLaurin’s method collects the fumes then neutralizes them.

The plant official’s method neutralizes the fumes in the spinning bath.

The delay in putting the abatement process into operation has been due to the desire of the officials to work out their own process, keeping in mind the necessity of not interfering with the manufacture of the silk product, which now has attained a degree of perfection unknown in the early days of manufacture.

Council Long Besieged

City officials and West Side councilmen have been besieged for months by angry housewives who demanded that the nuisance be abated.

Councilman Gibbons of the West Park district has repeatedly urged city officials to find some way of eliminating the fumes.

We are rapidly approaching the time when we will be able to put into operation a process which will end the nuisance, Dr. McLaurin explained. "We must, however, make sure that in doing so we do not kill the goose which lays the golden egg. We intend first to prove that the processes we have worked out assure us a product as good as that now being manufactured. Once that has been determined we can act."