Many industrial heating options provide value to a wide range of industries, and a good example here is the world of immersion heaters. These heater types, which are typically electric, often take the place of furnaces and fuel-based heaters or reactors, playing a major role in heating across several different sectors.
At Gordo Sales, we're proud to offer a wide range of immersion heater options for various needs, such as the 55-gallon metal drum immersion heater by Tempco we offer for under $500. Our immersion heaters come in screw plug, flanged and over-the-side formats, and allow clients several capabilities within their common need areas. What exactly is an immersion heater, what are some of its major benefits, and which industries will you find uses for it in? Here's a basic primer.
Also known as a bayonet heater in some circles, an immersion heater is an electrically-powered heating device used to heat material inside immersible tanks. These devices work in a variety of industries, including water and wastewater treatment, hazardous material disposal operations, chemical manufacturing operations, petroleum refineries and even more.
An immersion heater uses electricity to run the heating device itself directly through the tank's metal wall. Heat is transferred to the process fluid via thermal radiation between the metal walls of the tank and the heating element. The heating element can be a resistance wire coil, cartridge heater, band heater or ceramic heater.
Here are some of the top features and benefits of immersion heaters to be aware of:
Our next several sections will go over the industries and applications where immersion heaters often provide the most value.
One of the single most common uses of immersion heaters is within food processing. Many food product manufacturers need their ingredients and products heated evenly to a temperature that kills microorganisms, which is what the immersion heater will do.
Immersion heaters can sterilize containers and tanks for dairy products, vegetable extracts and even juices. They can also dry food items or cook food items to a safe internal temperature.
In many cases, they're major components of food establishments complying with local and federal food safety and sanitation rules.
Across the packaging industry, immersion heaters are used for heating shrink wrapping as well as sealing containers closed with plastic lids. They can also be used to seal large sacks of materials, helping to keep those materials sealed in freshness and keeping oxygen out so they don't oxidize.
In the manufacturing industry, immersion heaters are a go-to heating device for many molding operations. Plastic resin pellets can be melted down and injected into molds using an immersion heater, which is also the most efficient option to use when molding certain types of plastics. In other cases, they're often used to soften solvents or other liquids before the manufacturing process begins.
Process fluids in refineries and petrochemical plants can be heated with immersion heaters to various temperatures for different reasons. Sometimes, they're used to heat a fluid to its boiling point so that it can be separated into different components. In other cases, they might be used to heat a fluid before it is sent through a distillation column.
Manufacturers that use immersion heaters in these plants are seeking many of the same benefits as those using them for packaging or manufacturing, including fast heating speeds and even temperature distribution.
There are several parts of the oil and gas industry that rely heavily on immersion heaters. One is the production process, where fluids need to be heated up as part of the extraction and refining process.
In addition, the oil and gas industry also needs immersion heaters for its pipeline infrastructure. Heating pipelines allows them to maintain a certain level of viscosity, which is important for transporting the product safely.
It's also worth noting that many of the same benefits that immersion heaters offer in other industries also apply to the oil and gas industry. These include fast heating speeds, even temperature distribution and long lifespans.
When temperatures in reservoirs, pipes and other parts of wastewater management systems get cold, immersion heaters ensure there's no freezing. That's why they're used during the winter to keep sewage lines warm enough for liquid sewage.
Immersion heaters can also be used to raise water temperatures where necessary, with some setups offering the ability to deliver up to 200 gallons per minute of heated water.
There are many situations within a laboratory setting where immersion heaters can be put to use. For example, when samples need to be heated prior to analysis or when a reaction needs to be carried out at a specific temperature, immersion heaters can often do the job better than any other heating option.
They're also used extensively in environmental testing labs, where they help regulate the temperature of water baths and other devices used in various types of testing.
For more on the uses of immersion heaters throughout varying industries, or to learn about any of our industrial heating components, speak to the staff at Gordo Sales today.