Air humidity as a quality factor

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Unnecessary material rejects and annoying rework can be very costly for companies. The problem often lies in the excessively dry air in the interior, which leads to dust and electrostatic charges in surface technology. This too low humidity has a negative effect on the painted parts and impairs the quality. In addition, the performance of the workforce can suffer from too dry air. Modern air humidification systems provide a remedy here and ensure a constant room climate, from which not only the material and machine but also the employees benefit. Liebherr-Aerospace Lindenberg GmbH, manufacturer of landing gear, actuation and flight control systems for the aviation industry, requires an air humidity of 40 to 70 % for drying the paint systems used for landing gear. In order to guarantee this humidity in a reliable process, the company installed the Orbit Wing high-pressure air humidification system from Merlin Technology. "Our air washers became increasingly maintenance-intensive in terms of cleaning and contamination, despite the use of biocides. We therefore wanted a high-pressure humidification system without standing and circulating water," reports Norbert Miksch, Liebherr-Aerospace's technologist for painting processes and systems.

Saving energy, water and CO2

Compared to electric steam generators, high-pressure duct humidification from Merlin Technology saves up to 99% electrical energy and achieves an evaporation efficiency of up to 98%. This enables active support for CO2 reduction and a reduction in water consumption. The system can be easily integrated into any existing or new ventilation and air conditioning system. Only 2.5 watts of energy are needed to generate 1 kilogram of humidity. With conventional electric steam generators, up to 750 watts are required for this. The exact and individual regulation of the air humidity in the individual zones is essential for optimum results in surface technology. The combination of step and pressure control is trend-setting for the market in this respect. It reliably prevents over-humidification of the air and guarantees a constant humidity value. With modern systems, the air is humidified directly in the duct. The space requirement is a challenge. Up to now, this problem could usually only be avoided with energy-intensive systems requiring intensive cleaning. With the Orbit-Wing system, wing elements ensure a defined turbulence at the tear-off edge. The aerosols fly in a circle and cover a longer flight distance at a shorter distance. The evaporation distance is reduced by up to 50 %, saving space and increasing efficiency.

Positive sense of well-being due to higher air humidity

High-quality air humidification systems reduce dust by up to 80% and improve the indoor climate decisively. An increased production speed, improved and consistent surface quality and fewer sick days are the logical consequence. In addition, the humidity of the air influences the human sensation of warmth: If the air is too dry, the temperature would have to be warmed up by around 1 to 2° C so that people feel just as comfortable as they do at optimum humidity. This has a considerable impact on energy costs. 

The full article is published in German in the September issue of JOT.

Author(s): Merlin Technology and Liebherr-Aerospace Lindenberg

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