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A new tantalum line of heat exchangers for corrosive service

By Gerald Ondrey |

Last month, Alfa Laval AB (Lund, Sweden; www.alfalaval.com) introduced a new range of tantalum heat exchangers that offer the corrosion resistance of a solid-tantalum heat exchanger, but at a much lower investment cost. The heat exchangers are made of stainless steel that has undergone a surface treatment whereby a thin layer of tantalum is metallurgically bonded to all surfaces that are exposed to corrosive media. The steel core gives the exchangers high mechanical stability, making them much more resistant to thermal shock than glass, silicon carbide and graphite heat exchangers, says the company. The new exchangers are based on plate technology. Thanks to a highly turbulent flow, they have a significantly higher thermal efficiency than a shell-and-tube heat exchanger, says the company. The combination of superior flow characteristics with the improved heat-transfer properties of metal enables the new tantalum exchangers to deliver up to 100 times higher thermal efficiency than non-metal shell-and-tube units, says Alfa Laval. As a result, the Alfa Laval TA exchangers have a much smaller footprint than designs based on graphite, glass or silicon carbide, or shell-and-tube ones made of any material (including metals). The new tantalum…
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