Why a Plate Heat Exchanger?
Plate heat exchangers have been successfully used for decades. The most common design is a “Plate and Frame” heat exchanger. They are used in many industries and can be configured in sizes as small as a picnic basket or as large as a small truck.
Plate and frame exchangers are very efficient, as are all plate exchangers, but are also easy to disassemble, maintain and quickly be returned to service. This design uses high tech gaskets to separate the chevron patterned plates. Open the PDF file attachment for a fuller description of various exchanger designs.
More sophisticated designs have been introduced. Our advanced-welded exchangers are designed based on operational data from our long history of installed units coupled with finite element analysis refinement. Newer welded designs allow for higher pressures and temperatures. Some designs for high solid content and viscous fluids, including non-newtonian flow.
Plates are designed with a pattern, generally a chevron shape promoting turbulent flow. The turbulence enhances heat transfer and efficiency.
Compared to a “shell and tube” heat exchangers, a plate exchanger offers:
- High efficiency (typically offering lower capital cost).
- Easier maintenance.
- Small space and footprint.
For thermal recovery and energy savings, plate exchangers offer a quick payback.
Gasketed plate heat exchangers are used in moderate temperatures and operating pressures. They are high efficiency, relatively compact in size and therefore they are a cost effective design. Fluids flow, counter-current on opposite sides of the exchanger panels, conducting thermal energy in an efficient exchange.
The plates are formed with selected chevron patterns to optimize thermal exchange and pressure drop parameters.
The plates for the LS-Gasketed plate heat exchanger are separated by high-tech, formed gasket material. Various gasket materials are available to suit the operating fluids. The option of either a “glued” or “clip-on” gasket is available. The glued gasket is cured at high temperature, insuring a secure, tightly sealed joint. The clip-on gasket is more suitable for exchangers that require frequent disassembly for cleaning, as well as, applications seeing large temperature fluctuations. Please contact us for recommendations.
Easy disassembly and cleaning by operator technicians, is a feature of LS-Gasketed exchangers.
This series of exchangers is recommended for higher pressure and temperature applications. Plates are pressed on the same equipment as gasketed exchangers but these units do not use gaskets. Therefore, they are suitable for more aggressive process environments.
Some designs allow cover plate that can be opened for inspection and cleaning of each flow channel. The flow channel pattern insures that there is no mixing of the flow stream fluids.
This design combines the efficiency of high heat transfer and compact design while allowing higher temperature and pressure conditions, beyond gasket tolerance. The pressure loss on the tube side is low even with a high flow rate. Efficient heat transfer can be maintained with a low pressure drop.
The LS-Hybrid Welded plate exchanger often is used in place of a shell and tube exchanger. It offers a smaller footprint and lower cost due to greater efficiency. Contact us for comparisons. The operating temperature can range from a minimum of -100 ˚F to a maximum of 400 ˚F.
Dimple - Dimple pattern
The channel on one side is formed by spot-welded contact points between dimple corrugated plates. The cleaner medium runs in this channel. The channel on the opposite side is a wide gap channel formed between dimple corrugated plates with no contact points, the medium containing heavy solids or high viscous fluid runs in this channel.
Dimple - Flat pattern
The channel on one side is formed by spot-welded contact points that are connected between dimple corrugated plates and flat plates. The cleaner medium runs in this channel. The channel on the opposite side is formed between dimple corrugated plates and flat plates with wide gap and no contact points, the medium containing heavy solids or high viscous fluid runs in this channel.
Flat - Flat pattern
The channel on one side is formed between flat plate and flat plate that welded together with studs. The channel on the opposite side is formed between flat plates with wide gap and no contact points. Both channels are suitable for medium containing heavy solids, fiber or high viscous fluid.