The Different Types of Industrial Blowers
Most workplaces, manufacturing facilities, and processing plants nowadays don’t just put importance in their industrial fans – they also take their industrial blowers very seriously, making these large pieces of machinery a must-have piece of equipment in almost any production warehouse.
Industrial blowers have proven to be a vital type of equipment that is built, installed, and used for a variety of work efficiency purposes. For many centuries, it’s been used in warehouses or in everyday tasks that need a certain amount of air pressure or airflow to make something crucial happen.
Defining Industrial Blowers
The industrial blower is a centuries-old innovation that dates back to the mid-1800’s. It was initially built as an air pump, specifically used for internal combustion engines, in order to exhale combustion air in heat furnaces to melt metals. One of its first designs consisted of a motor shaft and impellors – which are rotors used to increase fluid’s pressure and flow – that ended up creating a gust of strong air, which proved useful for a variety of mechanical tasks then, and until now.
Fast forward centuries later – aside from just blowing out hot, combustion air, the industrial blower has progressed in terms of design, offering a multitude of other processes, types, uses, designs, tasks, and ultimately, several other purposes that have helped – and continue to help – mankind perform many industrial tasks faster, easier, safer, and better.
Simply defined, an industrial blower is a mechanical or electro-mechanical piece of equipment used in locations, or as part of a process, to emit a steady and strong flow of gas or air. They are usually driven by electricity or power via motors, which in turn, are also powered by engines. Industrial blowers are typically installed permanently within an industrial space as a permanent and mandatory part of the manufacturing process.
Aside from working on its own, it can also be attached to other pieces of machinery to achieve a specific output altogether.
There are different kinds of industrial blowers around, and these types are usually defined by a variety of factors: from its design, flow capacity, electrical ratings, maximum operating pressure, dimensions, to its material.
Purposes of Industrial Blowers
The range of what industrial blowers can do is extensive. They pose a lot of benefits to most manufacturing facilities that produce consumer goods on a large scale, quickly, and efficiently, via an assembly line of machines and workers.
Some of the more basic needs that industrial blowers can meet with ease include exhausting, cooling, drying, ventilating, aspirating, and conveying. They can exhaust hot or cold air, dust, airborne toxins, or chemicals. On the other hand, they can also supply hot or cold air into any given structure or room.
Industrial blowers can also cool or dry different goods in a very short amount of time. They can ventilate any space for hours on end, providing a cool and comfortable temperature for the workers involved. They can also convey and move around goods from one station to another, or from in the factory to outside of it.
Common Types of Industrial Blowers
In the world of industrial blowers, there are a few top kinds that manufacturers and consumers usually seek out. They’ve become the most common and most needed because of their vital functions and reliable designs, as well as their ability to cater to a wider variety of tasks and purposes inside most manufacturing facilities. They each play their own important and straightforward part in production processes – because honestly, without these industrial blowers, large-scale manufacturing work would not be as efficient, reliable, quick, effective, or sometimes, even possible.
What are these common blowers? Let’s go through them one by one.
1. Positive Displacement Blowers
Also known as rotary lobe blowers, positive displacement blowers exist for a simple but impactful reason – they keep and release air at a specified time, pressure, velocity, and direction, using a safety valve, which is a necessary part of the blower. These can also move fluid in a certain direction, still using mechanical processes.
Its other name comes from the rotary lobe it possesses – when two propellers counter-rotate and are usually powered by electric motors.
For air or gas, a positive displacement blower works by allowing air to enter and flow through one chamber (the expanded inlet), and then allowing it to seamlessly exit through another (the decreased outlet). As mentioned, these blowers are experts at keeping airflow constantly at the same speed and flow, even with increasing or decreasing pressure.
Positive displacement blowers are usually used in petrochemical industries, and for the following tasks: sewage aeration, gas boosting, powder or pellet transfer, conveying, and flushing. This blower streamlines the flow of air without coming in contact with any of the outside air, so this is recommended for tasks that need chemical or contaminant-free air to flow.
2. Centrifugal Blowers
Another common type of blower is the centrifugal blower, which is the most frequently used type in most ventilation systems, because of its capacity to continuously transfer gas/air steadily, as well as keep out any air pollution.
They’re made of rotating impellers, which is where an airstream goes through. As more air comes in, the speed and volume increase as well, with the direction also changing as the impellers continue to operate. The fan wheel is what shifts in direction and quickens when air passes through and exits quickly – this is because more air means an increase in kinetic energy, too.
Centrifugal blowers can be made from single or multiple units, made with different blade orientations and designs (radial, backward or forward-curved). They can also offer a variety of speeds, depending on the flow rates needed, speed drives used, and shape of blades.
The main purpose of this type of blower is to create a certain amount of pressure to suck in, circulate, and release new air. It is also responsible for emitting high pressure and strong airflow from a limited amount of air/gas.
This capacity of theirs is mostly used for manufacturing tasks like drying, cooling, combustion, air conveyors, dust or toxins control, as well as small but vital everyday tasks, like gas meters, aquarium filters, and even medical equipment applications.
Other applications that make use of the centrifugal blower’s ability to produce a large volume of hot air includes temperature control, exhausting hazardous gases, chemical filtering, heating, furnaces, printing, food processing, household appliances, pollution control, incinerators, and plastic, wood or textile-making machines.
3. Regenerative blowers
This kind of blower is built with an impeller that spins to attract air that gets caught between its blades. This quick and constant motion is what drives air to be pushed forward, producing its ability to transfer large volumes of air at a modest or even low amount of pressure. They’re built with parallel inlets that are placed perpendicular to the impeller.
As its impeller spins inside its main compartment and air is pushed in and outward (this goes on until it is turned off), making this kind of blower useful for a vacuum or pressure purpose.
This blower, because it’s self-lubricated, is usually used in facilities that don’t allow oil or moisture in the air, such as food processing facilities, clinics, hospitals, or noise-sensitive working environments, and can do jobs like aeration and transportation well. Because they’re good for removing any flammable gasses or toxic chemicals in industrial air, their other purposes include dust and smoke exhaustion, sewage cleaning, engraving, vacuum packaging, dryers, printing presses, packaging, and vacuum systems.
They’re also recommended because it doesn’t get into contact with anything else, significantly decreasing its need for regular maintenance or repair.
4. High speed blowers
As the name already suggests, a high speed blower possesses very high levels of speed, resulting in equally high pressure and airflow. It is powered by a motor or electricity, and is built with impellers around the sole shaft of the blower to increase the amount of air it can take in. Despite being highly effective, they don’t produce loud sound.
They may be built differently but a high-speed blower usually consists of a valve that releases the air and a compression unit that controls the speed of the blower’s rotation. The speed and pressure can be adjusted to whatever purpose your facility might need. These common purposes may include (but are not limited to) ridding water of wastes, distillation, generating power, or brewing.
5. Helical screw blowers
Last but not least, this type of blower, compared to the positive displacement blower, can produce airflow at a higher pressure, because of its main rotor built with two lobes, and a second rotor. The two rotors expertly work together in a quieter manner, and do not touch at any point.
They are used to also move oil-free, safe air from one location to another, with its seal, rotor design suited for applications that need a smooth, steady air flow and hardly any leakage.
Their purposes include wastewater treatment, processing chemicals or cement, food or industrial processing, molding, material handling, and conveying.