SiC Ceramic Heat Exchangers

INCREASE YOUR PRODUCT PRODUCTIVITY WITH THE UMAX ADVANCED CERAMIC DIFFERENCE

 

umaxHeat exchangers are a critical component in chemical and metal processing systems. If not properly engineered, the heat exchanger could fail, mechanically or thermally, causing the loss of critical production. The ability to efficiently transfer heat is fundamental when choosing a heat transfer material. However, when processes involve highly corrosive acids or abrasive fluid streams, considerable attention must also be given to the materials of construction and heat exchanger configuration if productivity levels are to be maximized. SIC ceramic has become the material of choice for heat exchangers in the harshest process applications because of its extremely high resistance to corrosion and erosion, and superior thermal conductivity.

CG Thermal designs and constructs the Umax Advanced Ceramic shell and tube heat exchangers, with alpha sintered silicon carbide (SiC) tubes to tolerate hostile operating environments. Our Umax Advanced Ceramic heat exchanger is a higher-value and longer-lasting alternative to reactive metal, nickel alloy, and graphite heat exchangers, offering unmatched levels of corrosion resistance, abrasion resistance, and thermal efficiency for harsh process conditions. At CG Thermal, we work alongside our customers to develop custom innovative solutions for an array of corrosive process applications. 

The Umax Difference

The Umax Advanced Ceramic heat exchanger combines a shell-and-tube design with alpha sintered silicon carbide ceramic tubes using a highly engineered individual tube sealing system coupled with PTFE tube sheets. This results in a durable and innovative product that can perform across a broad range of environments. These units are inherently universally resistant to corrosion, erosion, and thermal shock due to their exceptional strength properties, extreme hardness, and lack of free silicon. 

Furthermore, the materials used to construct them are highly resistant to fouling. Should a tube require replacement, it can be quickly and easily accomplished without disturbing any other tubes. This process not only minimizes downtime but is also highly economical as no specialized welding procedures or special tools are needed for Umax tube replacement. 

CG Thermal has the experience and resources to customize each Umax unit according to the specific conditions of your application.

Umax installed SST shell

Some of the key features include:

  • Exceptional strength, durability, and service life
  • Superior corrosion and erosion resistance
  • Low fouling
  • Low maintenance costs
  • Excellent thermal conductivity and superior heat transfer efficiency
  • Thermal shock resistance
  • CG Thermal’s proprietary self-contained elastomeric sealing system
  • Completely field-repairable with common tools

Whether you are working with mixed acids, free halogens, hydrofluoric acid, or caustics, the Umax Advanced Ceramic heat exchanger is designed to provide optimal results in your heat transfer application. All of our Umax units are expertly constructed and thoroughly tested according to ASME SEC VIII Div 1, TEMA, ANSI, and ASTM guidelines in addition to our own stringent in-house standards. Our Umax tubes come with a five-year unconditional guarantee against corrosion and erosion.

The Advantages of SiC Ceramic

The Umax Advanced Ceramic heat exchanger utilizes alpha sintered silicon carbide (SiC) tubes, an advanced ceramic containing no fillers or free silicon. It is an extremely hard material with high thermal conductivity. When used in heat exchanger constructions, SiC ceramic offers the following advantages:

  • No corrosion. Advanced ceramics such as SiC are very chemically stable, making them suitable for operating environments involving aggressive chemical compounds (strong acids, bases, oxidizers, etc.).Umax HF HNO3 | Pickling
  • No erosion. Because of its extreme hardness, SiC ceramic tube is extremely resistant to erosion.
  • Low fouling. The tight structure of SiC ceramic makes for a smooth surface, which is inherently resistant to fouling. This increases the operational time between maintenance downtimes as compared with other heat transfer materials and thereby your overall productivity.
  • Ease of maintenance and repair. Most Umax heat exchanger repairs are easy and quick to complete using common shop tools. Repairs can typically be done onsite with minimal downtime. SiC tubes can be pressure washed, mechanically or chemically cleaned without causing damage.
  • Immune to thermal shock. The high thermal conductivity and low CTE, coupled with strength of SiC ceramic tubes makes them essentially immune to thermal shock. This makes them capable of withstanding the extreme and rapid temperature changes often associated with heat transfer applications.

The benefits of SiC ceramic heat exchangers become even more apparent when compared with their metal counterparts. Metal heat exchangers have several weaknesses, especially when it comes to the high-stress environments often encountered in heat transfer applications. With SiC ceramic heat transfer units, you can expect:

  • Extreme corrosion resistance and zero annual rate of corrosion. SiC ceramic is more corrosion-resistant than all metals or alloys, making it much better suited for handling highly corrosive fluids at high temperatures.
  • Higher flow velocities. SiC ceramic tubing is virtually immune to erosion. This allows ceramic heat exchangers to safely handle substantially higher acid flow velocities than graphite and metal exchangers, enabling much higher thermal efficiencies.
  • Superior heat conductivity. SiC ceramic tubes offer excellent thermal properties and exhibit thermal conductivity greater than that of stainless steel, graphite, and tantalum.

Industries and Applications

Umax Advanced Ceramic heat exchangers are capable of handling severely corrosive and abrasive liquids and gases without the erosion, corrosion, and oxidation issues associated with heat exchangers made from alternative materials. This makes them well suited for:

  • Chemical milling. Ceramic heat exchangers are often used in chemical milling operations involving hydrofluoric and nitric acid.
  • Titanium/SST and nickel alloy pickling. Heat exchangers with ceramic components offer the corrosion resistance required to tolerate a variety of hydrofluoric and nitric acid pickling treatments for metals.
  • Sulfuric acid dilution. Umax ceramic can withstand all concentrations of H2SO4 making it a preferred choice for battery producers or specialty chemical toll manufacturers.
Other common uses for ceramic heat exchangers include:
  • Carbon steel processing with hydrochloric acid
  • Applications involving high-purity electronic chemicals
  • Halogens (Br, fluorine, chlorine)
  • Mineral processing (hydrofluoric acid, sulfuric acid, Caro’s acid, and mixed acids)
  • Specialty chemical processing

Quality Heat Exchanger Products from CG Thermal

SiC ceramic can tolerate harsh operating environments without degradation due to erosion or corrosion. This makes SiC ceramic heat exchangers perfect for applications involving highly corrosive liquids or gases. In addition to being corrosion-resistant and immune to thermal shock, Umax Advanced Ceramic heat exchangers are also easy to maintain and repair.

Umax-install-precious-metals

CG Thermal’s Umax advanced ceramic heat exchangers are universally corrosion- and erosion-resistant, offering exceptional performance in a range of aggressive reducing and oxidizing environments. In addition to our advanced ceramic options, we carry a variety of high-performance graphite and gas-to-gas recuperative heat exchangers that can be further enhanced with the addition of fluoropolymer-lined components and other application-specific features.

Using our extensive thermal and mechanical design resources, we can also work with clients to construct custom-engineered heat exchangers for highly specific process or plant conditions to address issues pertaining to storage, transport, and heat and mass transfer. We pride ourselves on building long-lasting relationships with all of our customers in order to better understand their unique needs and deliver top-of-the-line process technology solutions.

Contact CG Thermal today to learn more about our customer specific heat exchangers, fluid handling equipment, or in-house thermal and mechanical design capabilities.

Technical Specifications