GLRPPR Sector Resource: Recovery of Steam Condensate Utilizing Membrane Technology at Carlisle SynTec Inc., Greenville, Illinois
Recovery of Steam Condensate Utilizing Membrane Technology at Carlisle SynTec Inc., Greenville, Illinois
Carlisle SynTec manufactures single-ply roofing systems primarily for commercial and industrial applications. In most situations, return of boiler steam condensate is a viable and often utilized energy recovery and water conservation practice. However at Carlisle SynTec, the return and reuse of steam condensate has not been feasible due to its use of a mica coating in the manufacture of EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer), a type of synthetic rubber. After the EPDM is mixed and rolled into sheets, a water-mica solution is applied to the EPDM sheet to prevent adhesion upon itself during vulcanization. The vulcanization process involves 1) winding the sheets onto large mandrels, 2) loading the mandrels of mica-coated product into six 8' x 60' autoclaves, 2) curing with direct contact steam for 4-6 hours, and then 3) unloading the mandrels to cool. During vulcanization, steam condenses on the product, the mandrel and autoclave's interior walls. This steam condensate is not returned to the boiler due to the suspended mica particulates that render the condensate unusable. Prior attempts to remove the mica with traditional cartridge filtration had been ineffective, causing immediate boiler pump seal wear & failure, coating of internal boiler surfaces and even internal boiler component blockages. This required subsequent repairs, system downtime and parts and labor costs. No further attempts to filter the condensate were pursued. Seeing an opportunity, Carlisle Syntec requested assistance from the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) to investigate the feasibility of producing a steam condensate suitable for return to its boiler, saving natural gas, chemicals and water.
Illinois Sustainable Technology Center
Date of Publication:
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