The major applications for graphite exchangers are in the acid-related industries. Sulfuric, phosphoric, and hydrochloric acids require either very costly metals or impervious graphite. Usually graphite is the more cost-effective material to be used.
Services are coolers, condensers, heaters, re-boilers, evaporators, interchangers, graphite columns for distillation, absorption and scrubbing, ejector systems and centrifugal pumps, basically all services requiring this material.
Types of units are shell-and-tube, poly block-type (circular and rectangular), and plate-and-frame-type exchangers. The design of the shell-and-tube units are the same as ordinary but the design characteristics of tubes, spacing, and thickness are unique to the graphite design. The block and plate and frame also can be evaluated but the unique characteristics of the graphite materials require input from a reputable supplier. Most designs will need the supplier to provide the most cost-effective design for the immediate and future operation of the exchangers. Also, consider the entire system design as some condensers and/or evaporators can be integral with their associated column.
Applications are increasing in the following industries as new products with chlorine and fluorine compounds expand:
- fine chemicals and pharmaceuticals
- organic chemicals
- inorganic chemicals
- oil and gas
- water and wastewater treatment