Thermal fluid heater plays key role in mill's exhaust systems

08 May 2017

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A Babcock Wanson TPC 200B thermal fluid heater has been installed at Bridgnorth Aluminium as a key component in its exhaust air purification system. Bridgnorth Aluminium is the UK's only manufacturer of lithographic aluminium strip with a purpose-built, state of the art rolling mill and stretch levelling line in its Shropshire site, where the company is focussed on maintaining a clean alloy system with its high-purity aluminium alloy product range.

As part of a planned expansion, Bridgnorth Aluminium recently purchased a refurbished rolling mill from overseas. And as with all rolling mills that use oil as a coolant and lubricant, amounts of oil are emitted in their exhaust. In line with best practice, the company has installed an Achenbach AIRPURE exhaust air purification system to separate and recover hydrocarbons from the mill exhaust — in this case tetracene.

Babcock Wanson’s TPC 200B thermal fluid system forms an integral part of this process, heating the exhaust air to enable the AIRPURE system to recover virtually all rolling oil. Babcock Wanson not only supplied the new TPC 200B thermal fluid system, but was also involved in laying out the pipework and connections to the heat exchangers. The TPC 200B is a fully automatic coil type, multi-pass thermal fluid heater complete with integrated burner, control system and safety devices. It provides optimal distribution of the heat, high fluid velocity in the exchange tubes and continuous flow monitoring to ensure long thermal fluid and system life and the highest level of safety.

Expected energy savings

“The original manufacturers of the rolling mill equipment recommended that we use a thermal fluid system as part of the exhaust air purification system," said Peter Shrimpton, Engineering Projects Manager at Bridgnorth Aluminium. "We hadn’t used this before and were unfamiliar with Babcock Wanson, but we’ve had no problems with it whatsoever — you simply switch it on and it works, simple as that! The service we have received from Babcock Wanson has also been great.”

Whilst Bridgnorth Aluminium hasn’t been using the system long enough to gather comprehensive energy efficiency data, it is expecting considerable energy savings. Babcock Wanson claims between 20-50 per cent energy savings can be made by using a TPC B thermal fluid heating system, when compared to the transfer of the same amount of heat using traditional steam boilers. These savings are achieved as the thermal fluid does not need to change state to transfer the heat, as would be the case with steam, which means no trap losses, no blowdown losses and no flash steam losses. This also makes for much simpler operation and very low maintenance needs — with lower energy input demand also come lower total exhaust emissions so thermal fluid systems are much kinder to the environment.



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