In our annual 10 tips issue, we deliver a lineup of articles focusing on infrared ovens, heat exchangers, process and temperature controls, platinum resistance thermometers, and boilers and steam generators, among other valuable editorial content. You may find yourself thinking “Thanks for the tip!” on every page. Here is a closer look at some of the highlights.

  • “Specifying an Infrared Oven” by Ron McIlvaine, a business unit manager with CCI Thermal Technologies Inc., Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, outlines five things you should describe about your application to any potential oven supplier and five things that you, the end user of the equipment, should strongly consider before purchasing an infrared oven.
  • “The New Kid on the Block” describes plate-and-frame heat exchangers to help you determine whether they might suit your application. Written by Matt Oswald, an application engineer specializing in the power industry, and Michael Allen, an application manager specializing in the HVAC industry, both with GEA PHE Systems North America, York, Pa., the article outlines the similarities and differences between plate units and their likely more familiar to you shell-and-tube counterparts.
  • “Red Alert” by Steve Miller, a product manager at Eurotherm, Leesburg, Va., is intended to help ensure that you find the alarm system that best suits the needs of your application. According to Miller, with a little planning, controls users can create an alarm strategy that helps ensure safe and effective system operation.
  • “Temperature Measurement Tips” explains how measurement accuracy goes beyond just the accuracy of the sensor. Contributed by the engineering team at Burns Engineering, Minnetonka, Minn., a company that manufactures temperature measurement products and solutions for industrial applications, the article explains how the direct-immersion, indirect-immersion and surface-mount sensors can provide insights in tight places.
  • “The Art of Chasing BTUs” by Eric A. Kessler, a regional sales manager with Clayton Industries, City of Industry, Calif., offers tips about selecting, operating, maintaining and repairing a boiler or steam generator. As Kessler notes, the annual fuel bill for a boiler can easily be two to three times the installed cost of the unit. Optimizing each step of the process to maximize return on investment pays ongoing dividends.
In addition, columnist Arthur Holland offers advice on ensuring safe control with process critical variables such as temperature, flow and pressure. Turn to “What Does ‘Fail-Safe’ Mean on Your Process?” to learn how to study and deal with any control elements that could fail to danger in your process.

And, offering advice of a different type, our Equipment Overview on Infrared Heaters presents a matrix of heater suppliers that allows you to objectively compare suppliers’ product lines based on your proposed heat processing application, industry, desired heater type or even energy source. Use our online version to narrow or widen the selection criteria quickly.

Linda Becker
Associate Publisher & Editor