Babcock Wanson has completed a turnkey project for Formica to install a high efficiency Thermal Fluid Heater and ancillary equipment at its Coast Road, North Shields site to heat a newly installed oven used in the manufacturing process.

Heater for High Pressure Laminate

Heater for High Pressure Laminate

Formica Group is a leading provider of branded, designed surfacing solutions for commercial and residential customers worldwide. It is the world’s largest manufacturer of High Pressure Laminate (HPL) and the Formica® brand is known world-wide

The Solution

To maintain the consistent quality Formica is renowned for, reliability and efficiency are key to the manufacturing process. Babcock Wanson recommended its EPC 1500ES fully automatic coil type, multi-pass Thermal Fluid Heater for the project as it provides optimal distribution of the heat, high fluid velocity in the exchange tubes and continuous flow monitoring to ensure long fluid life and the highest level of safety.

The EPC Heater includes a large integral exhaust gas to combustion air economiser which cools the exhaust gas by heating in the incoming combustion air so increasing combustion efficiency.

During commissioning, with an outlet thermal fluid temperature of 287 C, the flue gas was cooled to 200 C giving a combustion efficiency of 90-91 %. However, in subsequent operating tests under production loads and with a lower outlet thermal fluid temperature of 251 C, flue gas temperature was only 127 C and combustion efficiency increased to 94%. This high level of efficiency under working conditions really reduces the overall fuel consumption below that normally anticipated when high temperature fluids are required for process heating applications – a key benefit of the EPC ES design.

The gas fired EPC-ES has been fitted by Babcock Wanson with a primary circuit, secondary pumps and control valves on each section of the laminate treater, along with the associated pipe work.

Heater for High Pressure Laminate

Customer Testimonials

Loucas Antoniou, Engineering Manager at Bakkavor Meals London

“The Thermal Oxidiser is the most efficient way of removing any smells and it’s also very straightforward to use.  We have been a customer of Babcock Wanson for many years and have always enjoyed a good service.”

Carbon Trust Annual Report 2009/10

“A major carbon footprint reduction will be achieved when the scheme currently in progress to change the main boiler fuel from heating oil to gas is completed in summer 2010. This £900k project will reduce our carbon emissions via energy usage by around 15% by removing the need to use heavy fuel oil, as the new boiler plant will use natural gas as its main fuel source.”

Webster & Horsfall

“What we hadn’t expected initially though is the level of control the new system provides us with; it’s amazing. It alerts us to any potential issues, is easy to maintain (no annual statutory inspection is required) and is quick to respond. All that and it doesn’t take up much room.”

Peter Connolly, Production Engineer at Vacu-Lug

“The ESM 2000 installation, together with an ongoing programme of process plant lagging and steam trap maintenance, has enabled us to significantly reduce our gas usage and cushion the company against rising gas prices.”

Dave Scrivens, Facilities Manager at Plastic Omnium

“Babcock Wanson’s expertise and ability to provide a whole package made them the leading contender for this project. On further investigation, their proposal was also commercially viable, which sealed the deal.”

Denis Kelly, Engineering & Construction Manager at Stolthaven Dagenham

“The Thermal Fluid Heaters themselves were ideal for this project as they are based on mature technology and are well proven in the field. They are robust and also require very little maintenance.”

Ian McQuarrie, Engineering Manager at Puredrive

“During my three years here, the Steam Generators and Thermal Fluid Heaters have worked flawlessly. Babcock Wanson carries a good name in the business for both quality and equipment longevity. Their knowledge, company wide, is exceptional and the whole package from installation through to service is managed professionally.”

Jason Hall, J&A Young Engineering Manager

“We had estimated our steam requirements, but Babcock Wanson had the experience to understand that we had underestimated this. In fact, the erratic nature of the steam loads would have been impossible to meet under our existing spec. Babcock Wanson was able to identify this as well as provide a very energy efficient solution with a number of enhanced features”.

Lee Bullen, Corrugated Services Manager at Board24

“It’s running very well, both easy to use and efficient. The service from Babcock Wanson has also been very good.”

Peter Shrimpton, Engineering Projects Manager at Bridgnorth Aluminium Ltd

"We were unfamiliar with Babcock Wanson, but we’ve had no problems with it whatsoever; you simply switch it on and it works – simple as that! The service we have received from Babcock Wanson has also been great.”

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