Tank Jackets Get Serious
Wineries make careful choices when it comes to takes for fermentation and storage of their wines. And for the most part, the critical tank jackets for temperature control are chosen by the tank fabricators as part of the package. A fresh look at Omega Thermo Products, the manufacture of the jackets themselves, may lead to stronger choices for the individual winemaker.
The Omega group originated from the Netherlands with a U.S. entity in Wisconsin, has more than 40 years of combined heat transfer experience and is the original developer of inflatable laser welded heat transfer surfaces, welding more than a million square feet of heat transfer surface annually. Omega supplies many tank fabricators worldwide and in the United States with great results and a proven record.
Laser welding technology is a highly controlled process that gives Omega flexibility that results in a superior product for the United States market. Laser welding tank components is the process of attaching a jacket to a tank shell; the tank is then fabricated, and when fabrication is completed the jacket is inflated to create the thermal layer. The precision of laser welding can be done with controlled weld depth that results in no burn-through, pitting, or heat tint of the bottom sheet.
The protective poly on the product side of the material can be left in place during welding to protect the material finish and removed after tank fabrication is completed. Laser welding allows Omega to create patterns that can beused for either straight tank shells or conical shaped tank shells. Omega can also weld jackets for flat and flanged, dished and conical tank heads.
Omega Thermo Products is specialized in heat exchangers and tank components. Though they don’t fabricate tanks, Omega can work with any tank fabricator without limitations. Omega offers free heat transfer calculations for optimization of the heat transfer jackets to assure proper performance of the application.
The flexibility in design of the Laser- Plate results in an exclusive product that can be customized per application, with flow passages throughout the jacket to optimize thermal performance, increase efficiency and save energy. The heat transfer jackets can also be personalized by implementing the winery emblem for an exclusive look of the wine tank. Omega has done several specialized projects over the years for well-known wineries in France in collaboration with tank fabricator Mangeard from Jarnac of France (www.mangeard.com).
The benefits of the Omega Laser- Plate are:
- Ability to optimize thermal performance. By utilizing flow passages (baffles), the Omega Laser-Plate can optimize the thermal performance of the heat transfer jacket and distribute the medium evenly over the available heat transfer area. This results in the efficient use of the cooling medium and saves on energy costs.
- Superior heat transfer coefficient due to corrugated plate design and a custom weld pattern. The Omega Laser-Plate design and weld pattern creates a turbulent flow of the medium inside the jacket to increase the heat transfer coefficient.
- Designs suitable for complex geometries. Custom patterns and shapes can be created per application requirements, including conicalshaped fermentors, conical- and dished-shaped tank ends. Connection isolation's can be integrated in the heat transfer jacket.
- Improved control characteristics. The lower volume of the Omega Laser-Plate will result in a faster response time of the application when changes are made to the flow rate or temperature of the medium.
- Reduced fabrication cost with Omega’s CNC (CAD Nesting Software) welding procedure versus resistance welded products or manual welding of pre-formed dimple.
- No refinishing required. There is no heat tint on the inside of the tank because of controlled weld depth of the CNC laser welding process.
- Minimal heat input. With regulation of welding speed and power, there is no carbide precipitation or change in material structure on the product side, so tank longevity is increased.
- Thinner materials. Material gauges as thin as 22-gauge can be utilized for the Omega Laser-Plate.
- Uniformity and repeat-ability. The highly controlled and accurate CNC laser welding process yields high quality tanks with very minimal weld defects.
- High-pressure ratings of up to 1000PSI versus other inflated heat transfer products.
- High-test pressure. The inflation pressure of the Omega Laser-Plate exceeds the pressure rating up to 7 times the working pressure to guarantee the weld integrity.
- High quality materials. The quality of the materials used to weld the Omega Laser-Plate is necessarily high due to the welding process requirements, which results in a high quality end product.
- ASME, CRN and PED. Certifications are available to all Omega customers.