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The deployment of a distributed point source monitoring system based on wireless sensor networks in an industrial site where dangerous substances are produced, used, and stored is described. Seven essential features, fundamental prerequisites for the authors' estimating emissions method, were identified. The system, consisting of a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) using Photo-Ionisation Detectors (PIDs), continuously monitors the Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) concentration at a petrochemical plant on an unprecedented time/space scale. Internet connectivity is provided via TCP/IP over GPRS gateways in real time at a one-minute sampling rate, thus providing plant management and, if necessary, environmental authorities with an unprecedented tool for immediate warning in case critical events happen. The platform is organised into sub-networks, each including a gateway unit wirelessly connected to the WSN nodes.
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