Mist collectors (sometimes oil mist cleaner) are the machine that collects oil mists from the oil-based or water-based coolants in the working environment. It is used in machining factories or production lines where oil mists easily accumulate. The application is similar to the industrial air purifiers except that the oil mist cleaners mainly filter out the industrial mists, smoke, dust, particulates, and fumes. Industrial mist (including fumes and other particles) refers to aerosols consisted of dust, liquid, and sticky particulates.
Different types of oil mist cleaners are available on the market. There are compact mist collectors, which are mounted directly to the machine tool. There are also ceiling-mounted models as well as floor-mounted cleaners. Their particular installation design allows them to fit into required environments. In general, mist collectors are commonly seen in CNC machining settings. They are powerful in filtering the oil mists generated during the grinding, milling, turning, or other machining processes.
Industrial mist is a compound of industrial liquids, dust, and particulates. The industrial liquids can be water vapors, lubricants, and oils generated and released from the metalworking equipment. When these industrial liquids spread into the air, they capture the dust and particulates and turn into aerosols. These substances, if not well collected and evacuated, will spread throughout the working environment to the walls, ceilings, floors, and machines.
As these greasy and gluey substances cover the surfaces, the environment becomes slippery and is thus dangerous for the staff members. In addition, these mists are sometimes hazardous or lethal. If inhaled by the human, it harms the respiratory system and can possibly pose lethal threats. When the oil mists cover the machines, it compromises the accuracy and results in malfunction of the machinery. To ensure a safe working environment and the functionality of the equipment, oil mist collection is substantial.
The construction and installation of the mist collector are similar to that of an air purifier. It is typically console-style equipment that is mounted on the floor, against the wall, or on the ceiling. Inside the oil mist cleaner, the most important component is the filters. The filters are the media that works as the barrier in the way of the airflow path. All the substances in the air are separated from the air when it flows through the filters.
A collector is expected to filter out at least 95 percent of the particulates in the air. The high-quality models should achieve a HEPA level of over 99.5 percent filtration efficiency. HEPA stands for high-efficiency particulate air and the HEPA level filtration refers to the efficiency to which at least 99.5 percent of the particulates in the size of around 0.3 microns are filtered out.
There are mainly three types of mist collectors. Each of the types has its own features and the mechanism they apply to collect the oil mist particulates is different. They are centrifugal, cartridge, and electrostatic precipitator types.
The centrifugal mist collector has an oil mist collecting system that revolves around the rotating filter that gathers small mist droplets to bigger droplets. The centrifugal force makes the droplets stay on the wall of the machine and drain out from it until there is only pure air in the cavity.
The mechanism of the cartridge type is rather simple. It includes HEPA filters to capture the industrial smoke with oily substances when the airflow passes. The maintenance of this type of machine is also easy: just replace the HEPA filters regularly and that is pretty much all about it.
Electrostatic precipitator mist collectors apply high voltage currents to gather the particulates and industrial liquids in the air. It works by giving the particulates positive charges. When the substances pass through the plate with negative charges, they are trapped and hence filtered out from the air.
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