The Benefits of Heater Hire for Chemical Plants

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Published: 16th July 2012
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Chemicals are widely used in consumer goods manufacturing, as well as in industry, agriculture, and construction. The UK’s chemical and pharmaceuticals businesses are worth £60 billion, with the vast majority of them supplying goods to both national and international markets.

The jobs of over half a million people in this country depend on chemical processing and the manufacture of thousands of different products from chemicals, which entails converting raw materials (oil, natural gas, air, water, metals and minerals) into commodities under strictly controlled conditions. Paints, fuel additives, fabrics, electronics, medicines, car parts, solar panels, packaging and many more goods that are often essential to our everyday lives are all chemical based.

Some of the most commonly used industrial chemicals include:

- Phosphoric Acid – widely used in fertiliser, soft drink and food production
- Sodium Carbonate – cleaning agent manufacturing and glass making
- Chlorine – bleaching agents manufacturing
- Sodium Hydroxide – dye and soap manufacturing
- Terephthalic Acid – polyester goods manufacturing
- Sodium Silicate – insulation products manufacturing
- Hydrochloric Acid – used to treat steel, and in pharmaceutical products
- Ethylene Glycol – a primary antifreeze ingredient
- Titanium Dioxide – a white pigment in paints, pharmaceuticals and some food items
- Vinyl Acetate – found in white glue

And:

Potash – a crop fertiliser

About Chemical Plants

Chemical plants consist of research facilities, laboratories, reactors, processing / production facilities, and storage areas.

Equipment found at a typical UK plant will include:

- Reaction Vessels – chemical reactions are used in chemical plants to form new substances in various types of reaction vessels. In many (but not all) cases the reactions are conducted in special corrosion-resistant equipment at elevated temperatures and pressures
- Distillation Systems & Columns
- Heat Exchangers / Condensers
- Receivers / Catch Pots
- Metal Agitators
- Chilling Plant
- Filters
- High Speed Stirrers, and
- Storage Tanks & Vessels

How Plants can Save Money

World-wide, the chemical industry is fiercely competitive; to successfully vie in the global marketplace petrochemical companies and refineries (Shell Oil, BP) and chemical plants (Ineos Chlor, ICI, GrowHow, Tata) are always under pressure to perform at their very best, while keeping a tight rein on costs. Hiring, rather than buying, extra equipment when necessary can help them to achieve this.

Heater rental companies (that also offer dehumidification machine rental) are increasingly assisting UK chemical plants with the maintenance and drying out of reaction vessels and storage vessels. Heaters and dehumidifiers are not used separately, but in a combined way. Once the vessel cleaning is done by an industrial cleaning firm, the services of a heater and dehumidifier specialist will be called upon to manage the drying process.

Prolonging the Life of Vessels

A vessel may be showing signs of deterioration inside, or the internal coating is at the end of its working life. It will need to be emptied, shot blasted and repainted. Heating and dehumidification
equipment will be used to assist in keeping the shot blast moisture-free during the process, and also in maintaining temperatures inside the vessel during repainting and paint curing.

Expert drying can prolong the life of reactors and tanks, meaning owners can avoid the huge cost involved in paying for replacements.

Benefits to Hiring

Hiring in the required equipment is both an attractive and cost-efficient option as units are only on site when in use, and there is no capital outlay to purchase them. The client will be supplied with the most effective solution for each individual case (the products will be sourced to specifically suit each drying project), whereas if the plant stored equipment it might be a case of ‘one-size-fits-all’, which will not ultimately prove suitable.

Heater rental (and dehumidifier rental) is quick and easy to do, as well as being affordable. Even better news for chemical plants is that the UK can boast some of the best heater and dehumidifier specialists in Europe – experts with a proven track-record of successfully providing heater and dehumidification solutions for this particular application.

Article submitted by Steve Reeve, Sales Director at Andrews Sykes. With over 25 years’ experience, Andrews Sykes provides Chemical Plants with heater hire services using machinery sourced from the world’s top manufacturers.

For more information in regards to heater hire services for workplaces, please visit www.andrews-sykes.com

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