Vacuuming Fe2O3 with an EXAIR Heavy Duty HEPA Vac System

In late Fall of 2013 I traveled to Mexico to meet with our Central and South American distributors.  We spent several days together, discussing products, applications, varying business climates in differing countries, marketing, selling, and a variety of other topics.  It was great to meet face-to-face, and after returning to the States, it’s been a pleasure to see these distributors work through applications and solve problems for their customers using EXAIR products.  The problems solved with our products range from blow-off and cooling needs, to scrap removal and vacuuming.

The photos below, taken by our distributor in Colombia, show Ferric Oxide (Fe₂O₃), a fairly benign form of rust, accumulating around large wire spools.  These spools are stored outside, and the rust is not detrimental to any processes, per se, but the accumulation around the spools is problematic.  The end user needed a way to vacuum the debris that was not only effective, but reliable for long-term use – the electrically driven vacuums they had been using on-site were failing after a short time.

steel dust vacuum 1
Large flakes which need to be vacuumed
steel dust vacuum 3
Steel fines which need to be vacuumed
steel dust vacuum 2
Problematic area of this application

As I discussed the application with our distributor, we went over the variables which would ultimately determine the correct system and model number.  The larger, more flakey material (shown in the first photo above) is suitable for use with a Chip Vac, Heavy Duty Dry Vac, or Heavy Duty HEPA Vac system.  But, the second photo showing the finer steel dust led us to refine this list to only the Heavy Duty HEPA Vac.

The reason for omitting our other vacuum systems and focusing solely on the HEPA unit, was the potential for airborne dust and a desire to offer the end user a removable and cleanable component to the vacuum system.

The HEPA filter of our Heavy Duty HEPA Vac system will filter the incoming material to 0.3 micron level with a 99.97% efficiency rate.  Filtration at this level is suitable for small particles such as the steel dust in this application.  And, the Heavy Duty HEPA Vac system uses a serviceable pre-filter which can be cleaned and reused as necessary.

These features, coupled with the longevity found in our vacuum systems (no moving parts = no wear points or components to break down over time), provided an excellent solution for this customer.

If you have an application in need of a compressed air based solution, give us a call.

Lee Evans
Application Engineer
LeeEvans@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_LE

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