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Infra-red Heating for Rapid Forced Drying and Curing of Water-based Coatings

Current legislation on the emission of volatile organic compounds (VOC's) has forced many companies to start using water-based coatings as a replacement to traditional solvent based coatings. The longer drying times of these compliant paints and lacquers very often results in extended process times and reduced throughput.

 

The use of infra-red heating allows water-based coatings to be force dried and/or cured in as little as a few minutes. The working flexibility of an existing oven can be enhanced, the efficiency greatly improved and increased customer orders can be met.

Infra-red Drying and Curing

Infra-red radiant heating represents a clean energy efficient drying and curing technique. The radiant transfer of energy heats the coating directly without the need to warm up large volumes of air.

The infra-red equipment is an 'open' design but the absence of hot air means that the temperature of the factory is not greatly effected.

The simple construction and absence of many moving parts and combustion products give reliability and longevity.

Benefits
The main benefit of using infra-red is that drying and curing times are greatly reduced so output capacity can be boosted.
There are also many other benefits:
The response time (heat-up time) of the infra-red elements is very fast by comparison to hot air systems.
In conveyorised systems, the heaters can be automatically controlled through product sensors.
The system can simply be added to in order for future requirements to be met.
Energy can be saved by switching off during even short production breaks.

Exact performance gains depend on the particular coating, but based on recent projects, reductions in drying time of up to 75% can be expected.

Information reproduced by permission of East Midlands Electricity

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