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Energy saving steam trap concept is a Gem

Elantas Deatech, a member of the global specialty ­chemical group Altana AG, and a producer of insulating materials for the electrical and electronics industry, is achieving significant savings in steam consumption at its site in Ascoli Piceno, Italy, following the installation of Thermal Energy International’s Gem steam traps

Elantas Deatech has now replaced all of the mechanical steam traps on its process, utilities and steam distribution pipeline with the Gem venturi orifice design.

Prior to the installation of the Gem steam traps, the mechanical traps regularly failed open, closed or partly open, necessitating regular replacement and maintenance. It was calculated that due to trap failure Elantas Deatech was wasting a large proportion of its steam production, which in turn was increasing energy costs.

In 2008, following a presentation at the Ascoli Piceno site, Thermal Energy International organised a bucket test to measure the live steam loss through the trap at various condensate load conditions. This is said to have proved that Gem technology was significantly more efficient over varying loads.

Instead of utilising a valve mechanism to close off steam for maximum energy and water conservation, the Gem steam traps use their venture orifice design to effectively drain condensate from the steam system. As the Gem steam traps have no moving parts to wedge open or fail, it provides reliability necessitating only minimal maintenance and requiring no spares, testing or monitoring equipment.

Thermal Energy International’s local engineer began converting the whole site including drip legs, heating systems and tracing applications. Support was provided by Elantas Deatech’s technical department in sizing the traps for some specific chemical processes.

“Thermal Energy International has supported the project throughout with a survey of the steam traps, a payback report and bucket test,” says Mr Giorgio Monni, plant manager at Elantas Deatech’s Ascoli Piceno plant. “The Gem venturi steam system has provided us with real savings and the prospect of a large reduction in maintenance costs.”

Such has been the success of the Gem technology at the Ascoli Piceno site that Thermal Energy International received an additional order for Gem steam traps for the company’s site in China and this year received a further order for the Ascoli Piceno plant.

Available in a wide range of sizes for a full cross section of applications, the Gem steam traps are manufactured from corrosion resistant stainless steel and are guaranteed for 10 years, eliminating the need for repair or replacement. The Gem steam traps can provide a fast payback from reduced energy costs and increased equipment reliability. In addition it can improve product processing by enhancing process control, and can also reduce equipment repairs, downtime and replacement costs.

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