Article

Save Energy and Improve Equipment Performance with Ceramic Fiber Blanket

Learn how industrial ceramic fiber blanket can improve energy efficiency and boost your equipment's performance.

By César Pérez
Sales Engineer – NUTEC

8/9/2023

3 minutes

MaxWool 2300 Ceramic Fiber Blanket
8/9/2023

3 minutes

According to recent market estimates, the global market for industrial thermal blankets is expected to grow by over 9% by 2026. Discover how industrial ceramic fiber blanket can be the key to achieving your goals. Thanks to its high resistance to thermal shock and ease of installation, this solution is widely used in various industries today.

This article will explore the benefits and applications of industrial thermal ceramic fiber blanket in equipment for heat loss reduction and worker safety.

What is Ceramic Fiber Blanket?

Ceramic fiber blankets are a set of interwoven fibers designed to resist high temperatures. These blankets vary in chemical composition, thickness, and density, elements that dictate the end use or operation temperature range. They maintain low thermal conductivity, high resistance to thermal shock, and are easy to install.

These blankets come in rolls packed in standard boxes for distribution. However, taking special care during storage and transport is essential, as this material is sensitive to mechanical wear and can become heavy if it absorbs moisture.

Although mainly used in industrial settings, such as furnaces and kilns as well as in fire protection systems. Ceramic fiber blanket is also used commercially to dryers and a wide range of insulation covers. 

When choosing the right blanket, it is crucial to consider factors such as density, maximum operating temperature, chemical composition, and the specific needs of the equipment or industrial process in which it is to be used. Check out below our available options:

  • MaxWool® 2300 Refractory Ceramic Fiber Blanket. Its chemistry is based on alumina and silica. These blankets can withstand temperatures up to 2300⁰F (1260⁰C). 
  • MaxWool® 2600 Refractory Ceramic Fiber Blanket. In addition to having the characteristics of MaxWool® 2300, this type of blanket contains Zirconia, which allows it to be used at temperatures up to 2600°F (1425°C).
  • Pro tip: Other NUTEC offerings include a Low Biopersistent (LBP) Fiber Blanket variant called SuperMag®. Its chemistry is composed of Calcium, Silica, and Magnesium and can withstand temperatures up to 2200°F (1200°C). 

    Also, NUTEC has a Passive Fire Protection Blanket line called MaxShield™. These are used in a variety of passive fire protection applications, and it's composed of Refractory Ceramic Fiber (up to 2300°F or 1260°C) or Low Biopersistent Fiber (up to 2200°F or 1200°C).

It should be noted that correct installation is crucial to ensure optimal performance. Following installation recommendations and guidelines can provide proper coverage and maximum effectiveness.

Blue helmet worker inspecting industrial unit

What are the Benefits of Ceramic Fiber Blankets?

Energy Savings

According to studies by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, thermal blankets can improve energy savings by up to 20% in industrial processes.

There are many more ways in which thermal insulation contributes to energy efficiency and cost reduction that you can find on our website.

Enhancing Equipment Performance

By reducing heat loss, ceramic fiber blanket ensures a more constant and uniform temperature inside the equipment, facilitating process control.

This translates into more efficient operation, allowing equipment to operate without thermal fluctuations and avoiding stresses that can reduce performance in the long term. As a result, companies can experience a significant increase in their productivity and/or profitability.

This quality is typical of all solutions in thermal insulation. Therefore, it is advisable to verify how to increase the useful life of the equipment with industrial thermal insulation solutions.

Increased Safety in the Work Environment

As well as the energy and performance benefits, ceramic fiber blanket reduces greenhouse gas emissions by lowering the demand for additional energy to compensate for heat loss.

Furthermore, it improves safety in the work environment by decreasing the surface temperature of the equipment, given that it complies with the ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) fire protection standards, providing greater safety for workers and facilities.

Blue helmet worker applying insulation tape

Selection and Installation of Industrial Ceramic Fiber Blanket

Factors to consider when choosing the correct thermal blanket for each piece of equipment or process

To select the most appropriate thermal blanket, it is advisable to have precise information on each industrial process, such as:

  • Temperature ranges during processes. Which means the maximum temperature, the operating temperature, and the duration for each cycle.
  • Reducing atmospheres. There are controlled processes whose chemical concentrations can compromise the thermal efficiency of the insulation, as is the case of environments with hydrogen saturation.
  • Regulatory and design requirements for the process. On this note, some processes require a more ‘creative’ insulation installation. Also, regulations may require a particular type of insulation composition.

In the case of NUTEC, you can find standard presentations with thicknesses from 1" to 2" thick and widths from 24" to 48". However, custom dimensions can also be created based on the needs of the industrial application.

If you want more information on choosing the most suitable heat insulator, we invite you to read the article Heat Insulation: Choosing the Best Option for Your Industry. You can also find out about the entire range of NUTEC blankets here.

Installation Process and Best Practices

One of the principal qualities of ceramic fiber blankets is their ease of installation. Given their lightweight nature, spreading them on a surface and fixing them using spike anchors with locks will suffice.

However, following some recommendations during and after the installation is essential:

  • Care in transport and storage. This product is sensitive to mechanical wear, even during transport. Stacking up to 12 boxes on a pallet is not recommended, as the product could become compressed. In addition, ceramic fiber blankets can absorb moisture from the environment, which makes it heavier and increases the possibility of tearing.
  • Implement an inspection system. After the first three cycles of use (or firings), the thermal blanket experiences a reduction in thickness of between 1% and 3%. Therefore, it is vital to perform thermographic analysis and visual inspections to detect hot spots after this period.
  • Improve durability. Under ideal conditions, ceramic fiber blanket can last up to 12 years. However, in some processes, its useful life can be shorter, reaching months instead of years. Therefore, it is recommended to consider the application of coatings or mixtures that extend the useful life of the insulation.
  • Get a certified provider. Choosing an experienced provider that offers solutions, advice, and the necessary engineering to achieve the objectives established in thermal insulation is crucial.

Conclusion

In conclusion, ceramic fiber blankets are an outstanding option for maximizing energy efficiency, reducing costs, and improving equipment performance in various industrial applications. Given their attributes, these products efficiently insulate surfaces, and their ease of installation makes them the perfect base resource.

It is vital to remember that appropriate transport and storage arrangements are paramount to guarantee the optimal functioning of ceramic fiber blanket.

In addition to the benefits for operations and industry in general, the selection and implementation of ceramic fiber blanket systems also contributes to the safety and comfort of workers by reducing the temperature of equipment surfaces.

Regular inspections and thermographic analysis are recommended to monitor the blanket's performance and to ensure its effectiveness over time. Following the best practices and having an expert supplier, you can obtain the maximum performance and durability of these blanket products in industrial thermal insulation.

About NUTEC

NUTEC is one of the leading manufacturers of high-performance thermal insulation and fire protection products. With more than 45 years of experience, it offers a wide range of refractory and low biopersistence ceramic blankets, engineering fibers, and ceramic fiber paper, among others.

We aim to be a world leader in thermal insulation solutions, providing the highest quality products and unmatched customer service.

Contact us today and learn how our thermal insulation solutions can benefit your industry!

Want to Know More?

At NUTEC, we are committed to providing you with valuable content that helps you make informed decisions for your business. Thank you for taking the time to read this entry and we hope it provided you with insights that you can apply to your operations.

If you have any questions or would like to learn more about our products, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

To get in touch, simply fill out the form, and one of our experts will get back to you as soon as possible.

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