Managing Foam Buildup in Your Facility
Most industrial processes that involve the mixing or transfer of liquids run the risk of unwanted foam generation and buildup. Foam forms as air is entrained into liquids though mechanical agitation during processing. This entrained air can subsequently become excessive surface foam and lead to loss of plant efficiency. Poor foam control can result in equipment damage, decreased product yield, reduced process efficiency, and environmental pollution. Foam spillover can also cause excessive downtime in your facility and additional costs as a result of ensuing cleanup operations. Thus, implementing proper foam control techniques, including successful use of antifoams and defoamers, will improve your production process.
How Does Foam Control Work?
While foam may have a relatively simple appearance, it results from several interacting physical, chemical, and biological processes. Therefore, the key to foam control lies in understanding the various characteristics of your facility’s foam risks and selecting the appropriate antifoam or defoamer to counteract foam producing interactions.
People often use the terms antifoam and defoamer interchangeably. The proper use of the terms should apply more to the application of the chemistry. When chemistry is added to a system to prevent or lessen future foaming, it is being utilized as an antifoam. When chemistry is used to combat foam as it forms, it is referred to as a defoamer.
Foam control chemistry consists of various raw materials with each bringing a unique characteristic to the overall formula. Foam control chemistry should spread rapidly throughout a foaming system to create differential surface tension across the bubble surfaces resulting in weak spots that “burst." Small hydrophobic particles in the foam control formula de-wets the bubble surfaces and prevent reformation of that bubble by disrupting the Marangoni effect.
Hydrite Defoamer & Antifoam Solutions
Hydrite Chemical offers a comprehensive selection of general-purpose and food-grade foam-control products for a wide range of industrial and food processing operations. Our water-dispersible foam suppressors include a variety of water-based, glycol-based, and silicone technologies that inhibit or eliminate existing foam.
A partial list of our defoaming and antifoam solutions appears below:
- MCA 8123S – Minimal maintenance foam control for potato processing.
- PATCOTE 415 – Specially formulated foam control for coolant manufacturing processes.
- PATCOTE 492 – Foam control formulation designed primarily for use in coolant systems.
- SUPPRESSOR 1723 – Versatile and highly concentrated foam control product for various industrial processes from textile production to downhole drilling.
- SUPPRESSOR 2233 - specialty foam control agent that works very well in most paint and coating systems.
- SUPPRESSOR 3105 – A 5% active silicone emulsion foam control formulation.
- SUPPRESSOR 3110 – A 10% kosher-approved silicone emulsion for food processing applications.
- SUPPRESSOR 3112 - A 10% kosher-approved, formaldehyde-free, silicone emulsion for food production processes. This product is specially formulated for rapid knockdowns and persistent foam control.
- SUPPRESSOR 3120 - A 20% silicone emulsion foam control formulation for general food processing applications.
- SUPPRESSOR 3130 - A 30% kosher-approved active silicone emulsion designed to conform standards and specifications related to food contact applications.
- SUPPRESSOR 3415 - A proprietary blend designed for use in potato processing areas.
- SUPPRESSOR 3533 - A formulated product designed specifically for sugar processing.
- SUPPRESSOR 3583 – 100% active, non-silicone antifoam formulated especially for controlling foam in specialty cheese production.
- SUPPRESSOR 3590 – Synthetically formulated antifoaming product for systems with high starch content.