Air Cleaning Blog

Updates and news about Puravents range of air cleaners, electrostatic filters, and oil mist eliminators and oil mist recovery.

Trion IMP 38 Electrostatic oil mist eliminator

Oil Mist Eliminator for Marine Engine Breathers

How do you prevent oil mist from a ships’ engine filling the engine room and other parts of a ship? Oil Mist Eliminator for Marine Engine Breathers

Typical large marine engine that benifits from Trion IMP 38 oil mist capture

Typical large marine engine that benefits from Trion IMP 38 oil mist capture

All internal combustion engines have a ‘breather’ which is basically a system of pipes  which connects the crankcase and cam shaft casing to atmosphere, ensuring that those spaces are not over pressured by combustion gases leaking past the piston ring seals and valve sleeves. Moderate leakage of combustion gases ensures that there is always a movement of gas along the breather pipe to atmosphere, and inevitably there is some oil mist that is discharged out of the breather pipes. Most small engines have some primitive oil mist eliminator for catching this mist and if properly designed the oil mist once captured should drain back to the sump. On very large engines such as those found on auxiliary power and marine applications something a little more sophisticated is called for.

Trion IMP 38 Electrostatic oil mist eliminator

Trion IMP 38 Electrostatic oil mist eliminator

On large marine engines the IMP 38 oil mist eliminator finds an ideal application.  From large marine engines the steel breather pipe is usually either 2, 3, 4, 6, or 8″ Ø. The pipe layout usually has an upward run before it reaches atmosphere,  so that oil mist can impinge and condense on the walls of the pipe as it cools before draining by gravity back to the sump of the engine. Without any active mechanism for collecting oil mist the smaller oil droplets would be discharged into the general air space, where in time they would settle on surfaces and become a hazard and cleaning burden.

IMP 38 Electrostatic air cleaners treating marine engine breathers

A pair of IMP 38 Electrostatic oil mist eliminators treating marine engine breathers

The IMP 38 is a clever electrostatic air cleaner that is made by Trion, and which is designed to connect to pipelines that carry oil mist from engines or indeed any other lubricated and enclosed machine. The IMP 38s come do not have a fan as they rely on the airflow that pre exists in the pipeline. As the mist enters the cleaner the spiked ioniser section gives each oil droplet charge, so that as it then flows through an array of oppositely charged collector plates there is an attraction between the charged oil mist droplets and the collector plates. In short the oil droplets hit the plate and the collected oil drains off under gravity back to the pipe and the sump. IMP 38 comes in various sizes with airflow capacity ranging up to 1020m3/hr and with plain, threaded or flanged pipe connections to make connection to the various pipe sizes easy.

IMP 38s electrostatic oil mist eliminator have almost no pressure drop so they have no impact to speak of on the efficiency of the engine. Moreover, they are well specified, meeting stringent requirements of military specifications MIL-S-901D, MIL-STD-167, MIL-STD-461, covering high impact shock, environmental vibration , and electromagnetic interference.

On engines burning cleaner fuels IMP 38s should run for long periods with little maintenance returning oil back to the sump, however the heavier and dirtier the fuel type, the more often the collector cells in the units will need to be cleaned.

Of course marine engines are only one application for IMP 38s – they are also used for gas turbines, auxiliary engines, large compressors, storage tanks, and vacuum pumps.

For more information and help on these oil mist problems call us 01729 824108. All we need is the pipe size, airflow through the pipe and your preferred connection detail and we can specify the ideal IMP38 for your application



Air Purifier or Air Cleaner – Its a definintion thing

It’s reasonable for a layman not to know the difference but,  surprising when even people in the industry don’t appreciate the difference.  What on earth am I babbling on about?

Air Purifier or Air Cleaner?

Generally speaking the layman will use ‘air purifier’ as their description of what they are after and generally speaking suppliers of these machines will quietly assume that the layman may be looking for either an air cleaner or an air purifier, then ask a few questions in order to discover which.

Just in case you don’t know, air purifiers work at a molecular level and in broad terms tinker with the chemistry of the air, or indeed the DNA of micro organisms, and air cleaners move air through a filter medium or mechanism to remove particles and or droplets.  Basically;

  • Air cleaners – remove lumpy stuff and droplets.
  • Air purifiers – alter chemistry and biology

I nearly fell off my chair when I read a brand new manufacturers brochure (old expensive paper type) where consistently air cleaners were being described in print, as air purifiers. Now as one of the biggest manufacturers in the market this may be viewed as a surprising error. Actually no. The surprising thing is that it was a printed mistake. If it had been a webpage or pdf file then no mistake. You see this is one of the many examples where web search traffic is driving the development and meaning of language.

I mentioned the layman earlier. If fault has to be laid down somewhere, it is at the layman’s door. Because people search for ‘air purifier’ more than 10 times more often than ‘air cleaner’, irrespective of what they are actually looking for, suppliers keen to have their products found in the market, wrestle with the problem for a few moments and then relabel their air cleaners as air purifiers. This over time reinforces the use of language as browsers are rewarded with the numerous  air cleaners (labeled as air purifiers) and actual air purifiers.

So whats next? There is no doubt that ‘air cleaner’ is becoming a term of the past, and it will come to pass that air purifiers will be subdivided into air cleaners, Ionizers, UV air purifiers etc.  As pig headed traditionalists we will continue to buck the trend and refer to air cleaners as air cleaners, but whether our market will know what we are on about is another matter. Feel free to visit our website for more information on products and services.

 Air Purifier or Air Cleaner

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