A move to electric heating elements in furnaces can have significant positive impacts on the cost of production, the reliability of heating furnaces and safety within the factory, according to Daniel Burton, Business Development Manager, Kanthal. “Gas, or in worst-case oil burners, have historically been integral to anode preheating. But gas burners are typically quite loud and generate high decibel-levels in the workshop.”
For a safer and quieter workplace
Kanthal® Super heating elements and Superthal® heating modules. “Electric heating,” Daniel goes on to say, “is almost silent, making a better working atmosphere and environment. It is also much easier to transport around the workshop and removes the need for the rerouting of gas pipes.”This is not the case with solutions such as
But a quieter workplace is by no means the only benefit. Electricity also provides a reliable solution for drying out anodes and reducing explosion risks in the workplace. “Kanthal® Super heating elements radiate down and ensure they're completely dry. The heat is significantly more controllable,” says Daniel.
The use of electricity can also promote and provide major improvements in the levels of safety within the factory environment and processes. “The first thing to note with electricity,” continues Daniel “is that the systems do not require monitoring from the workforce. A typical gas process, especially with open burners, requires a workforce available for constant supervision.”
Electric heating elements are clean. They do not produce any of the carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide or nitrous oxides that can be emitted by gas burners and linger in the factory environment.
Removing the need for human presence during the anode preheating process is also supported by the environmental improvements from electric heating elements. “Electric heating elements are clean. They do not produce any of the carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide or nitrous oxides that can be emitted by gas burners and linger in the factory environment.”
Five benefits of Kanthal® Super for optical fiber production
- Excellent heat uniformity: Kanthal® Super molybdenum disilicide (MoSi2) heating elements are highly effective at distributing heat evenly across the whole preform.
- Compact: Kanthal® Super elements have a relatively small footprint and take up minimal space within the furnace.
- Energy efficient: When used as Superthal® heating modules, energy consumption per meter of optical fiber cable produced is lower than many conventional heating solutions.
- Broad range of elements: Kanthal® Super is available in multiple grades and can withstand temperatures of up to 1,850°C (3,360°F).
- Support with design and installation: Kanthal can offer OEMs assistance with a furnace analysis and simulations, to determine the optimal placement of elements within the furnace.
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