Spectac Manufacture Mobile CIP Skid & Mixing Vessel for Two New Projects
These new projects involved the design and manufacture of a mixing vessel with high pressure & full vacuum steam jackets, as well as a mobile Clean in Place (CIP) skid unit with an integrated pump.
For the Mixing Vessel the client, a UK based food company, had some key criteria that needed to be met, this required an intricate design.
While still in production, this vessel is a horizontal mixer with a high-quality internal finish. One key requirement is that the vessel contains a hemispherical dished end with a minimum of 12mm clearance between mixer and dished end. This hemispherical dish end shape is designed so that the pressure within the vessel is dispersed equally across the surface of the head. Part of this vessel’s design included key calculations to ensure the vessel itself could withstand high internal pressure and full vacuum. Without the right calculations, use of high-quality materials and a superior design and finish the vessel could fail due to external pressures. A stable system is one that is stronger than required. When the vessel is pushed on, it pushes back and returns to its original shape.
Full vacuum (FV) design pressure means the vessel is rated to be used at any vacuum level that can be achieved under standard atmospheric pressure conditions. This vessel design also required individual high pressure and full vacuum steam jackets to allow temperature control in different areas of the vessel. These jackets are made from rolling plate welded to the shell at both ends creating zones of external pressure. In a steam jacket where steam flow is modulated, the thermostatic air vent helps protect against pipe hammer. Otherwise known as hydraulic shock when water, or in this case when the steam supply stops, slows briefly or changes direction suddenly.
What is a CIP Skid?
Clean in Place (CIP) vessels have existed for roughly fifty years and are frequently employed in hygiene essential industries. CIP is a method of cleaning the interior surfaces of pipes, vessels, process equipment, filters and associated fittings, without disassembly. CIP vessels offer substantial advantages to manufacturing facilities, from efficient and reliable cleaning of process equipment and piping at a lower cost to improved product quality. CIP skids differ slightly to CIP vessels in that they are designed for short-term processing and are mobile to move easily around the facility. Skid units also usually combine a mix of vessels, pumps and heat exchangers on a suitable platform.
The Mobile CIP Skid Unit
For this project the client, a UK based pharmaceutical company, required a unit that could be moved easily around the facility for their short-term processing requirements. Allowing users to clean the unit hygienically without dismantling it, such is the concept of CIP – Cleaning in Place. During the design and development phase we gained an understanding of the equipment flow requirements and modified the unit to the clients technical processing needs. The design includes heavy duty castors allowing the unit to be transported easily when it is full of cleaning solution.
One key design element required was the inclusion of an integrated pump. Most CIP systems are never actually in contact with the cleaning process, therefore sanitary pumps are not required. This integrated CIP pump is electro-polished to make sure that no residues stick to the inside. The unit itself is manufactured as a two-part CIP Skid Unit that allows the client to connect it to a production vessel’s spray ball to clean the vessel, while also connecting to the outlet or drain valve to collect any cleaning solution and recycle it. Spray balls are used to simplify the internal cleaning of vessels and piping as they can shower vessels internally with water and/or chemicals at pressure causing a sheeting action down along the vessel walls. This removes any residue and sanitises the unit. The spray balls are fast, effective and avoids staff being exposed to harsh chemicals during manual cleaning. They also require little to no maintenance as they are a hallow sphere shape with no moving parts, hence they are a reliable and cost-effective cleaning solution. Two CIP Skid Units will enable the client to run a two-part cleaning process which is often viewed as being more sustainable by capturing the cycle’s final rinse water. The use of a single tank in comparison would require waiting for that one tank to fill and drain for each step in a cycle.