Articles & Case Studies

TANK CLEANING PRESSURE LOSS PROBLEMS SOLVED BY SIMPLE RECONFIGURATION

Posted: Friday 7th September 2018

The Problem

Tank cleaning applications can be adversely affected by pressure loss problems which can have a direct impact on cleaning efficiency. A good example of this is where cleaning heads were installed and then subsequently found to be having very little impact on the tank walls. The tanks in question were large 10 meter diameter storage vessels that required periodic, as opposed to regular cleaning. In theory the 4 nozzle rotary jet heads should have had sufficient reach to provide adequate cleaning but, when observed, the jets were barley reaching the walls.

The Cause

Following the investigation it was found that frictional pressure losses were causing a significant pressure drop between the pump and the cleaning head. The pipe run was quite long with an effective length of 50 meters and in addition, there was a 12 meter climb. Also, the tanks were larger than before so a natural conclusion would be that a larger tank cleaning system would be needed. However, what was not accounted for was the additional flow in the existing pipework, which then caused an increase in pressure losses. The result was that the cleaning heads only saw a 4 bar pressure drop, as opposed to the 8 bar required.

The Solution

As the cleaning required on this particular application was only periodic the time taken to clean was not critical. Therefore, swapping the cleaning heads from a 4 nozzle to a 2 nozzle configuration meant that the cleaning time was doubled, but crucially the flow rate was lowered. This reduced the frictional pressure losses incurred and allowed the new 2 nozzle configuration to see the higher pressure drop and therefore, delivered a more powerful cleaning jet.

The Benefit

This relatively simple reconfiguration meant that the time, expense and inconvenience of having to upgrade existing pipework was avoided and enabled the existing tank cleaning system to deliver the higher flows required for more effective cleaning.

Spray nozzle specialists THE SPRAY NOZZLE PEOPLE (SNP) have established themselves over the last 18 years as leading experts in spray nozzle technology. They have advised a wide range of food process, manufacturing and chemical companies on correct nozzle selection and spray process optimisation, as quite simply the control of the fluid supply to their nozzles is of vital importance.

The new SNP product range includes hygienic fluid regulators, filters, air regulators and valves for use with SNP's air atomising nozzles. The Spray Nozzle People are part of the Spray People Group.




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December 2018

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