Advantages of Process Steam in the Manufacturing Industry

Process steam heaters generate steam for many manufacturing applications. Sanitizing pharmaceutical equipment, reducing the weight of building materials, and preserving food products all use process steam.

Although steam is not the only way to achieve many of these results, it is generally a more cost, time, and energy-efficient method. Steam heaters can create different types of process steam to match the specific needs of a project.

Here are a few of the key advantages of process steam in the manufacturing industry.

Process steam heaters5 Advantages of Process Steam 

1. Energy Properties

The reason steam systems are so effective comes down to steam’s energy properties. Steam has a high heat transfer capability. Transferring heat via steam allows for rapid spreading and provides more surface area. As a result, these systems can transfer more heat over a smaller area than forced-air or radiant heaters.

In addition to heat transfer, steam also has impressive energy holding and absorption capabilities. This makes for easy energy transportation.

2. Control

Another critical advantage of steam is its ease of control, especially when paired with the precision of electric boiler heaters. Electric immersion heaters offer higher accuracy to achieve and maintain target temperatures and control pressure. This is important as temperature and pressure are how steam is controlled.

Process steam heaters are carefully chosen according to the desired pressure and materials. For instance, a closed system is preferred where high-pressure steam is required. Because of the risk of scaling and corrosion with steam generation, we must carefully choose materials.

Process steam systems use automated digital control panels to achieve maximum control. The panels manage the boiler heater and monitor temperature and devices.

3. Ease of Monitoring 

Digital control panels can take advantage of another important quality of steam – its ease of monitoring. Controllers sync up not only with heaters but with monitoring devices as well. These ensure the right temperature and pressure are maintained and allow for automatic shutdown switches for safety. Steam is easy to monitor with these tools, helping to keep digital controllers accurate.

An added benefit is that automation allows ongoing monitoring without guidance. That means fewer person-hours, longer operation time, and reduced change of human error.

In addition, manufacturers can monitor steam purity for sensitive processes in food, medical, and pharmaceutical manufacturing.

4. Safety

The environment is becoming especially important for the manufacturing industry to prioritize. Governments are committing to achieving carbon neutrality with electric heaters and other technologies. There is added pressure on manufacturers to go with a greener approach. 

Steam is an excellent fit for this new approach because it is environmentally friendly and should produce no toxic byproducts.

That makes process steam safer for the environment and your employees. Of course, boiler heater safety also relies on proper ASME-rated vessels.

5. Versatility

Process steam is immensely versatile. You can use it in just about any manufacturing process with excellent results. For general steam types like utility steam, you can use one process steam heater for multiple projects. Pure steam heaters are usually dedicated to a specific use.

Wattco custom manufactures process steam heaters for any project. Our team of engineers works with you to determine the best heater types, settings, materials, and configurations to match the specific needs of your project.

Contact Wattco today for electric steam heater quotes and information.