Dust is often a major problem in a lot of different industries: coal dust from the air at loading facilities, asphalt dust during concrete production, heavy iron ore dust at iron mines, sugar dust, and suchlike. Sugar dust is a major nuisance for the sugar industry as it causes a substantial loss in revenue due to the loss of the final product in a form of sugar dust. Moreover, the presence of sugar dust in the air results in a coating of sugar grain on most surfaces which can disrupt the production process.
The common way of removing dry sugar dust from the air is with dry dust collectors, like baghouse filters and cartridge filters. However, the use of these systems is not the ideal solution for sugar dust scrubbing and possess numerous disadvantages.
The presence of dry dust in the air increases the risk of combustion as it acts as fuel for an explosion. Other elements necessary for an explosion are an enclosure, dispersion, oxygen, and an ignition source. The ignition source may be provided by a production process in a form of a spark, by construction work in a form of a welding of grinding spark, by a careless worker in a form of a cigarette; the other factors are present inside the dry dust collector. The environment inside the baghouse or cartridge filters creates the perfect conditions for the combustion to occur. Sugar dust carries a static charge and can arc inside the air chamber, which causes ignition.
The explosions that are a result of the sugar dust presence is the air is not a rare occasion – the incidents occur often enough for the government regulations to be broadened.
Wet scrubbers are able to overcome all of the disadvantages of the traditional dry dust collectors (explosion potential, high temperatures, moisture in the gas stream). They do not create the environment in which a combustion might occur; wet scrubbers can handle high temperatures of inlet gas stream.
However, it should be noted, most wet air scrubbers do suffer from clogging due to the sludge that is created after the sugar dust mixes with water. This mixture is extremely sticky and causes build up inside the chamber and stop the scrubbing process. Multi-vortex wet air scrubber, on the other hand, is able to process sugar dust without being clogged due to the high speeds of microturbulence vortices that are used to scrub the inlet gas. Tests show that multi-vortex wet air scrubber is able to handle 250 g. of sugar per 1 liter of water without any issues.
Over the past several years several sugar dust explosions have happened at sugar producing and storing facilities. Sugar dust induces explosions can be very dangerous and cause significant damage to both the facility and personnel.
Dry dust collectors are not appropriate for sugar dust as they get clogged easily by sugar. Moreover, dry dust collectors create a perfect environment for the sugar dust combustion, as dust accumulates in high concentrations in an enclosed space. Wet air scrubbers, however, are effective against dust and do not create an environment that poses a threat of sugar dust explosion.
Being a new type of wet air scrubber, multi-vortex wet air scrubber provides improved air treatment quality and can be used for both particles matter and gas collection. The treatment quality of multi-vortex wet air scrubber is generally 99.95-99.99% for both types of pollutants. Besides high efficiency, multi-vortex wet air scrubber possesses a number of advantages over conventional wet scrubbers – multi-vortex wet air scrubber is compact, omnivorous, eco-friendly, economical, and low-maintenance.