Dry Ice Blasting

 

dry-ice-blasting-sliderDry ice blasting uses small rice size pellets of dry ice shooting them out of a jet nozzle with compressed air. The temperature of the dry ice (-109.3°F or -78.5°C) “blasting” against the material to be removed causes it to shrink and lose adhesion from its sub surface. The warmer sub surface causes the dry ice to convert back into carbon dioxide gas. Paint, oil, grease, asphalt, tar, decals, soot, dirt, ink, resins, and adhesives are some of the materials removed by this procedure. Only the removed material must be disposed of, as the dry ice sublimes into the atmosphere.                               BIK(2) This method is superior to sandblasting because the dry ice is soft enough not to pit or damage the underlying surface. The dry ice sublimes quickly into the air and only the removed material must be cleaned up. Dry ice does not erode or wear away the targeted surface as traditional grit media and even wire brushes do. This means that surface integrity and critical tolerances are preserved and equipment will not have to be replaced due to surface erosion common with sand, glass beads, and other abrasive media. Traditional cleaning methods, equipment is often damaged while in transit to or from the dedicated cleaning area. Instead most equipment and machinery can be cleaned while in place.

Dry Ice blasting is used in place of many environmentally damaging solvents. These chemicals include trichlorethane, methylene chloride, perchlorethane, orthodichlorobenzene, cresylic acid, and caustic solutions. Since dry ice evaporates completely as a gas it leaves no wastes. Only the material being removed must be disposed of. When dry ice cleaning replaces hazardous chemical cleaners the disposal cost of that chemical is eliminated.

 Dry ice blasting:

  • is a non-abrasive, nonflammable and nonconductive cleaning method
  • is environmentally-friendly and contains no secondary contaminants such as solvents or grit media
  • is clean and approved for use in the food industry
  • allows most items to be cleaned in place without time-consuming disassembly
  • can be used without damaging active electrical or mechanical parts or creating fire hazards
  • can be used to remove production residues, release agents, contaminants, paints, oils and biofilms
  • can be as gentle as dusting smoke damage from books or as aggressive as removing weld slag from tooling
  • can be used for many general cleaning applications

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