Industrial ventilation is a mechanical system that brings in fresh outdoor air into the workplace (factory or manufacturing plant) and removes contaminated indoor air. Ventilation is used in a factory to provide a healthy and safe working environment for employees and to remove or have control over contaminants released in an indoor work environment. The ventilation could be achieved by opening a window (natural) or using fans/blowers (mechanical means). Common pollutants that are removed using an industrial ventilation system include: flammable vapors, welding fumes, dust, mold, asbestos fibers, oil mists, toxic chemicals, moisture and more.
Installing proper industrial ventilation is crucial for providing a safe and healthy environment for workers. They are critical to monitoring indoor air quality. A well-designed ventilation system will bring the air into the workspace at a specific speed creating the required air pressure to ensure cost savings for heating and cooling.
The purposes of a well designed industrial ventilation system are:
An industrial ventilation system consists of two subsystems: the fresh air supply and an exhaust system.
The fresh air supply system includes an air inlet, air filtering equipment, heating and/or cooling equipment, fans, ductwork and air distribution registers.
The exhaust system has an air intake area and ducts to remove contaminated air from one area to another area, an air cleaning device, discharge stacks and fans.
Some limitations of many if not all industrial ventilation systems:
There are three types of industrial ventilation systems: Dilution, Local Exhaust, and Indoor air quality ventilation
A Dilution system reduces the number of contaminants in the air by mixing the contaminated air with clean, fresh air. To install a dilution system, large exhaust fans are installed in the walls or the roof of a factory. This type of industrial ventilation system is used when:
Advantages of Dilution:
Disadvantages of Dilution:
Make up air is the air used to replace the air that was extracted from the workplace. If not replaced, the workplace could become “starved” of air and result in negative air pressure. The negative air pressure could increase resistance on the ventilation system resulting in less air being moved. To determine the pressure in a workplace:
A Local Exhaust system captures contaminants at the source and ejects them outside. It functions on a principal that air moves from high pressure areas to low pressure areas. This difference in pressure is created by a fan that draws air through the ventilation system.
This system is used in areas of high air contamination concentration where there is a greater risk to of exposure to employees. The ventilation system is used for isolated or contaminant sources. This system requires:
NOTE: The fan must be the proper type, wheel, arrangement, and size for the application. The fan may require spark resistant construction or other special options.
This system can handle removing many kinds of pollutants including metal fumes and dust. It uses less energy than dilution systems. This type of industrial ventilation system is used when:
Advantages of a Local Exhaust Ventilation System:
Disadvantages of a Local Exhaust Ventilation System:
Indoor air quality ventilation, which provides fresh heated or cooled air to buildings as part of the heating, ventilating and air-conditioning system (HVAC). The parts of an HVAC system include:
The exhaust system consists of:
Fume and Dust Extraction system is designed for portable use, especially for intermittent (on- off) applications. They are rugged and long lasting. This option is beneficial because of its low cost with reduced noise. For soldering applications, spot welding operations, a small, portable less expensive unit using a small amount of compressed air is more cost efficient than a heavier electronically operated unit.
The system is Low cost and durable and consists of:
Ring Vac® may be added and used to convey collected material beyond 10 feet (3 meters). The Model 40002FMS Stream Vac® (link to product) is affordable compact air cleaning system to remove dust, fumes, and other air pollution from work places. When connected to 10 feet (3 meters) 2” hose compressed air line, the system will remove up to several hundred cubic feet of air with welding and soldering fumes, particulate from local grinding operations, smoke and particulate using very little compressed air.
Air Amplifiers also called “Air Movers” – can be used for moving a large volume of air. Air Amplifiers uses a small parcel of compressed air to produce high velocity and volume, low pressure air flow as the output. They are ideal blowing or cooling and for venting. Air amplifiers are used to convey powders and dust, exhaust tank fumes, and moves air 12 to 20-fold in duct appliances to 60 times in area with no ducts. The amplifiers use a small amount of compressed air to draw in a flow of up to 17 times the air consumed to remove fumes quickly and efficiently for venting applications. The fumes can be ducted away, up to 50 feet (15.24 m), and the amount of suction and flow is easily controlled.
If a large amount of air borne dust or fumes need to be collected and moved a long distance, the air amplifier enhances the air conveyor ability to convey these materials over long distances. The reason is that air conveyors produces high vacuum but move less volume as compared to air amplifiers that move high volume but creates less vacuum. Nex Flow air conveyor systems are manufactured in anodized aluminum for most applications and in 304 Stainless Steel for high temperature and corrosive environments. 316L Stainless Steel air operated conveyors are available for food and pharmaceutical applications. An XSPC range conveyor is also available for moving materials that could clog. Air Amplifiers are lightweight, compact and portable so any application where that can be an advantage is ideal for their use, especially if the use is intermittent minimizing the real energy cost of compressed air.
The following accessories are available with Nex Flow air amplifiers:
NOTE: Pipes reduce the air amplification by 10:1 due to back pressure but still provides more efficient air amplification because venture systems move air or vent gas.
Nex Flow air amplifiers are compressed air operated devices that are often used for local ventilation due to their portability. They are not electrically run so there is no explosion risk. Compact and rugged, they are built to last. If existing systems are not sufficiently strong enough to move the contaminated air, then Air Amplifiers can boost these systems and overcome the losses. This deficiency may be caused by a pressure drop at ventilation entrances.
Filtration is important for maintaining the effective and optimum operation of all Nex Flow air operated products. All Next Flow products used for conveying. such as air amplifiers, air operated conveyors, etc. require clean compressed air. It is essential to use filters to remove water and oil from the compressed air lines. These filters are installed upstream from the air amplifier or air mover in the industrial ventilation system. Air filters should be sized to handle the maximum air flow expected for conveying the contaminated or clean air they are moving. Nex Flow water and oil removal filters are 5 microns and 0.3 microns respectively.
It is important to follow through with your employees and train them on the industrial ventilation system. They should be aware of the following:
It is important to properly design your industrial ventilation system to achieve the following:
Although all ventilation systems consist of the same basic principals, each system is designed specifically to meet the requirements of the work environment including the type of work and the rate of contamination release in the factory. Some important standards and items to consider when designing an industrial ventilation system are:
Our experts at Nex Flow® can help you choose the industrial ventilation system best suited for your manufacturing site or factory. Please don’t hesitate to contact us for more information about our ventilation solutions from a simple Air Amplifier to our Ring Vac® and Fume and Dust Extractor.
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