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Composite Gains

Composite Materials May Hold the Key to Success

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Chemical resistance and low thermal conductivity

Offering comparable chemical resistance to stainless steel valves, composite valves demonstrate outstanding performance in harsh or aggressive environments. This makes them ideal for exposed areas that are subjected to seawater, brine or salt spray. Also, since corrosion resistance does not require additional protective layers or paint (which could be damaged by impact), the maintenance requirements of units over their lifetime are reduced.

“Thanks to low thermal conductivity and the presence of internally-reinforced, hollow body sections, the valve reduces process heat loss, eliminating the need for lagging, heat tracing or valve jackets,” states Mr Malhotra.

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Sustainable production philosophy

Thermoplastic materials have the advantage of being reusable many times over. They can be heated, fused, injected and hardened again, and while this makes their products less suitable for use at elevated temperatures, it is a real benefit given the importance of sustainability issues in the 21st Century. In addition, there are other sustainability benefits that composites offer. For one, owing to the chemical resistance of the base material, it is not necessary to use paints or solvents when using composites. This substantially reduces the amount of material that requires disposal.

Aside from chemical and corrosion resistance, composite valves weigh less than metal valves. In addition, they can be delivered with shorter lead times because the manufacturing process is shorter. There is no foundry work, machining or painting involved. “New materials, designs and products such as the Composeal line are real game changers. They hold the potential to take India’s process industries to the next level,” Mr Malhotra signs off.

* Imran Mirza is the editor of PROCESS India.

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