A recently received vacuum dehydrator from customer location was in need of service and upgrades to today’s standards. Systems built by Gulfgate Equipment/Engineering decades ago have antiquated electrical controls that are safety hazards in today’s environments. Operation and troubleshooting is difficult as the operator has to walk around the complete skid to understand its current operational status. The many issues were safety and performance related, including:
- No inlet filter to protect the vacuum chamber coalescing elements. The coalescing elements will plug with dirt and becomes a constant maintenance cost.
- Controls were not intuitive, thus users having difficulty understanding how to operate the vacuum dehydrator properly.
- Difficult to maintain proper vacuum chamber oil level, especially in cold start up conditions.
- No main power disconnect, which was a plant safety issue.
- No high temperature safety feature
- Heater controls inside the control panel making it extremely difficult to change temperature settings.
The control panel went through many upgrades, including:
- Vacuum Chamber High Level Alarm Light Added
- Water Sump High Level Alarm Light
- Discharge Filter Alarm Light
- Low Flow Alarm Light
- Heater On Light
- Main Power Light
- E-Stop Button
- Manual Pump Control
- Oil Pump VFD Control
- Heater On/Off
- Main Disconnect
Removable glass window enables access to temperature controller, without opening panel. Shows VFD alarms, temperature, and hour meter. Allows for weather tight seal and maintaining explosion proof rating.
Modern Electrical Panel Wiring, including:
- Allen Bradley PLC
- All resettable breakers. Removed all fuses.
- VFD’s on all motors to keep factory set motor rotation and superior motor protection with soft start. No external phase alignment detection or switches (that often fail).
- Push to test and override relays.
- 2:1 oversized heater contactor
- Digital process temp control and analog high limit heater control
- Main Power Disconnect