Types Of The Thermal Oxidizers
A thermal oxidizer is basically a mechanism unit for air pollutant purification in several chemical plants, which decomposes dangerous gases at a high temperature and converts them into less dangerous but highly reactive oxygen gas. The term ‘Thermal Oxidizer’ is generally used in chemical engineering where it refers to any oxidizing agent that uses thermal expansion and/or expansion with heat in order to expand or contract an electrically charged surface area. Since oxidation is an efficient chemical method of reducing hazardous emissions, there are many companies providing thermal oxidizers at the industrial and manufacturing as well as the industrial and commercial sectors. These air pollutant purifiers are very useful for controlling the air quality in large industries and factories as well as in power generating plants and other places suffering from air pollution.
Industrial or General Physical oxidizers contain oxides of sulfur, which undergo a chemical reaction when exposed to air. This chemical reaction results in the emission of gases like carbon dioxide (CO), nitrogen oxides (NOx), oxygen (Oxy), and mercury (II) which are the chief components of the hazardous air pollutant, oxides of nitrogen. The smoke produced by the combustion of the gases produces a highly reactive agent known as free radicals. These radicals cause damage to the molecules and atoms of the target chemical, and thus they are capable of creating a great amount of damage even at small concentrations.
The primary use of thermal oxidizers in industries is to reduce the level of poisonous fumes emitted by the combustion of fuel oil, natural gas, kerosene, gasoline, diesel, etc. In addition, it can also reduce the poisonous effects of solvents and certain chemicals. It has been found to be highly effective in terms of preventing fire accidents. They are also being use for industrial cooling in refrigeration systems. They are very effective in the photochemical treatment of solar panels and semiconductors.
One major disadvantage of thermal oxidizers is its instability. The reactants used in the reaction are highly energetic in nature, and a little contact with the oxidizer leads to rapid spontaneous reactions. Certain organic compounds are highly sensitive to such high temperatures and may get destroyed. Thus a continuous supply of the required reactants is essential to keep the process going.
Other disadvantages of the thermal oxidizers include poor control over the temperature of the reactant. Also, if the concentration of the reactants is too low, it tends to generate unstable products instead of producing useful products. For instance, sulfuric acid commonly used as an oxidizer generates chlorates and hydrochlorides at low levels, while methanol, benzene and carbon dioxide are more effective in generating stable compounds.
Oxidizer-related problems are also caused by unfavorable reactant chemistry. Certain chemicals react poorly with certain reactants and produce undesirable side effects. The most common example of this is the reaction between chlorine and oxygen. Such reactions tend to increase the temperature of the reactants and decrease the temperature of the base material. Also, reactants and their containers need to be selected in such a way that they don’t undergo unfavorable reaction to provide the desired results.
The efficiency of the reactants, the efficiency of the containers and the stability of the products depend on the design of the reactant coupled with its physical and chemical properties. Certain reactants are better choices for specific situations than others. Certain types of reactants are better alternatives to certain other types. Also, there are special containers used for storing oxidizers for long periods of time that are also important for their efficiency.
The popularity of the thermal oxidizers is due to the usefulness of the product. Thermochemical oxidation is important in industries and several industries use these products. There are some factors like availability, price, environment and convenience that influence the choice of thermal oxidizers. However, when purchased in the right formulations, there are no restrictions on using them in most industries.