Liquid filtration needs vary significantly by industry. If you need liquid filtration systems, you already know that a one-size-fits-all approach will not function properly in your industrial environment. Finding the perfect solution for your specific challenges will help you get the best results for your industrial operations.
Types of Industrial Filtration Systems
Depending on your industry, you may use one or more of the following types of filtration systems to manage particulates in liquids while ensuring consistent, adequate flow for fluids.
Pipeline/basket strainers are usually designed with micron particle retention ratings between .25 to 40+ inches. These filtration options are typically used for the initial filtering of fluids entering a pipe or a facility.
Bag and Cartridge Filters and Housings
Bag filters/cartridge filters and housings are mechanical systems used in sediment filtration. Bag filters consist of numerous permeable pores that allow liquid molecules to pass through while trapping larger particles. Cartridge filters work in a similar way. Rather than trapping the particles within pores, however, the cartridge retains the particles by attracting them to the sides of the filter for optimal retention.
Automatic Self-Cleaning Strainers
Automatic self-cleaning strainers are motorized strainers that operate continuously to remove solids and particulates from liquids. These systems are suited for areas in which the consistent and continuous movement of the fluid is necessary to the operations of the facility.
Separators/Coolant Filtration Systems
Separators/coolant filtration systems are often used to remove oil and solids from metalworking fluids. These advanced oil filter and fluid cleaning systems are designed specifically to separate out oil and particulates to return the fluid to optimal condition.
Reverse osmosis is primarily used in water purification to remove salt and other contaminants from seawater and render it suitable for human and animal consumption. It differs from most other filtration methods as it uses the physical mechanism of osmosis through a membrane to separate.
Ultraviolet purification is not actually a filtration system at all. However, it is often used in conjunction with water filters to destroy pathogens in the water by attacking bacteria and viruses with ultraviolet light waves that effectively prevent them from multiplying and can destroy some of these microbes outright.
Liquid Filtration Solutions in Key Industries
Oil and gas filtration covers a wide variety of challenges at every step of a three-stage process.
- Land-based or offshore drilling (upstream): Completion fluids maintenance and filtration are typical examples of upstream filtration. Completion fluids are circulated through the wellbore to prepare it for production. The fluids need to be free of solids and particulates to maintain the permeability of the reservoir and provide optimal productivity. Using high-performance pleated cartridge filters is ideal to accomplish this task.
- Fuel storage and transport (midstream): An example of midstream operations is fluid separation. Separators aim to recover valuable hydrocarbons and remove water or other produced fluids. Effective separation at this stage will help preserve pipelines and downstream equipment.
- Refining operations (downstream): Hydrotreating is one aspect of downstream refining that combines an extensive array of filtration requirements. Hydrotreating improves fuel quality by removing sulfur, nitrogen, and other contaminants. Filtration challenges include particulate-free feedstock, sour water filtration, and oil or water removal. Clean fluids will help produce high-quality end products and protect equipment from clogging and corrosion.
Wastewater treatment plants are tasked with removing dangerous particles, contaminants, and biological materials from water to return it to a safe and usable state. Treatment typically takes place in several steps, each of which may require a different water filter solution. The initial stages of wastewater cleaning usually involve separating solids and particulates from the fluid. However, removing solid particles alone is often not enough for the water to be safe to reuse or discharge into the environment. During secondary and tertiary stages, the water goes through a succession of filtration processes designed to further improve its quality. Membrane filtration, for instance, helps to remove undesirable dissolved substances and emulsified oils. Commonly used types of membrane filtration include reverse osmosis, nanofiltration, and ultrafiltration. Vacuum evaporation is another technique used for high-grade filtration. It separates water from other particles through evaporation and can help produce very high water recovery rates.
Food and Beverage Manufacturing
Food and beverage manufacturers face many industry-specific challenges. They must meet strict sanitation standards and equipment must be able to withstand thorough cleaning (washdown, clean-in-place, etc.), and, in some situations, sterilization. Filtration solutions have several key functions to play as part of this process.
- Safety: Ensuring the final product is free of harmful particles and safe for consumption.
- Preserving flavor, odor, and appearance: Removing ultrafine particles and molecular contaminants is critical to achieving the ideal taste, smell, and color.
- Concentrate or clarify liquids: Filtration technology can be used to achieve the desired concentration for a beverage, and to separate liquid byproducts (e.g., Separating cream from milk).
- Cleaning challenges: To maintain a high level of sanitation in a food processing facility, even the wash water must be pre-filtered and contaminant-free.
While every application is different due to the variability in raw materials and processing methods, stainless steel strainers, automatic self-cleaning filters, carbon cartridges, and sterile membrane filters are a few of the solutions that could be found in a food and beverage application.
Local source water scarcity is forcing many industries to rethink their water recycling process to be more efficient. The chemical industry has a long list of chemicals they utilize when manufacturing; some of the most common chemicals are sulfuric acid for fertilizer, nitrogen for quickly freezing food, ethylene for synthetic rubber, and chlorine to eliminate pathogens. Water is often used during the production process to create the product or cooling equipment. No matter how the water is being used within the production process, filtration is critical to provide efficient operations. Automatic self-cleaning filters allow for no interruption due to the automatic backwash cycle. If the environment is corrosive, high-grade stainless materials and fiberglass-reinforced plastic are ideal for filters.
Agriculture and Irrigation
Water quality is a key issue in agricultural applications. Agricultural water sources include ground or surface water that have not been processed by a municipal treatment facility and carry a higher risk of contamination, like E. coli, which can be harmful to human safety. Therefore, agricultural water filtration systems are critical to removing harmful pathogens and bacteria. The ideal system should also help achieve the right balance of pH and nutrients for crops to thrive and prevent clogging of irrigation equipment. The first step to selecting a filtration system is a water quality analysis. Common water issues include alkalinity, high salt content, algae, or sediments such as silt or sand. Once all issues have been identified, a filtration solution can be selected to address them. Reverse osmosis systems or sand, gravel, and carbon filters are commonly used in agricultural applications.
The highest level of filtration is required in the pharmaceutical industry.
Surface filtration, depth filtration, and ultrafiltration are used to remove unwanted particulates from the chemical components of pharmaceutical products.
- Surface filtration systems intend to retain particles on the surface, often called a “cake layer,” for the purpose of being filtered out.
- Depth filtration systems remove particle, soluble materials, and colloidal materials from the fluid as it flows through filters decreasing in absolute micron ratings.
- Ultrafiltration systems are utilized when the goal is to remove viruses, bacteria, and other microorganisms.
Membrane filters, high-performance bag filters, or self-cleaning filters can be found in pharmaceutical processing facilities.
Ink, Paint, and Coating Manufacturing
Inks, paints, and coatings, which range in viscosity, may contain varying solids, pigments, resins, and dyes, as well as undesired agglomerates and contamination.
They require a complex, multi-stage filtration process, designed to remove impurities while allowing desired pigments and additives through. This can be enacted using specialty bag filters and cartridges. The correct filtration product will be selected based on filtration grade (micron rating), pore structure (fixed, uniform), filter media, and compatibility with the desired process (temperature/flow/pressure/chemical compatibility).
The Value of the Right Industrial Equipment Distributor
At ISC Sales, we offer an extensive range of water filters and other liquid filtration systems designed to suit your operational needs. ISC Sales carries more than 30,000 industrial products from top manufacturers, including the best and most practical solutions for your heating and cooling needs. Peruse our product list online or call (877) 606-3314 to request a quote. We look forward to the opportunity to serve you.