Reactive de-icing measures are used frequently in snow-affected regions. Local authorities have emergency teams who can quickly address drastic scenarios.
Anti-icing and De-icing
Anti-icing is a preventive measure to control the accumulation of ice. Anti-icing methods are used before snowstorms. It is an effective and efficient way to deal with the possibility of ice build-up. Anti-icing for large vehicles (like aircraft) is done through various methods such as pneumatic rubber boots, electro-thermal systems, bleed air systems, and ice-phobic materials. Chemicals like sodium chloride, calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, and calcium magnesium acetate are used for roads, bridges, and runways. Each has their own advantages and disadvantages, but sodium chloride (or salt) is regarded as the optimal choice. It is the cheapest and easily available. It continues to work even at -6 C (22 F). Below that, magnesium or calcium chloride is needed.
De-icing is a reactive measure in which the accumulated snow is melted through different techniques. On runaways, more sophisticated chemicals are used for de-icing. Some of these are glycol, glycol acetate, potassium acetate liquid, potassium acetate bio-based, potassium format, and sodium format solid. Potassium acetate is a widely used de-icing agent not only for runways but also for aircraft de-icing. It has its several benefits:
• It continues to work in extreme temperature of -32 C (-25 F).
• It has an indefinite storage life, which is why it is used in most of the airports across the globe.
• It is less slippery than glycols.
• It is non-toxic and non-hazardous to plant and animal life. In case of any accident, the chances of getting affected by the chemical are minimal. It is easy on the environment compared to the other chemicals in common use.
• It has a low Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD) and free from urea and phosphates. The lower the BOD rate means that it decomposes faster into environmentally safe components.
• Works longer than any chemical and traditional rock salts.
• It also dries rapidly making the surface usable in less time.
Potassium acetate does have a few drawbacks:
• It can react violently with strong oxidizing agents like nitrates and chlorates. It should be stored separately. It is, however, non-flammable. Nor does it react with water.
• It is not a cheap option. The equipment used to disperse it should be of high-quality to avoid wastage.
Clearly, the disadvantages are easily managed with proper care and use of suitable engineering. Its benefits are far more effective, allowing it to be a practical choice even with its relatively high cost.
About the Company:
Novamen Inc. is a privately held company and was started in 2010. With over 30 years of combined knowledge and experience in these markets, the founders are building the company with the intention of offering products and services to industrial clients that go beyond those of traditional chemical companies. Operating in Alberta, Novamen Inc. focus is primarily to industrial, oil, natural gas and mining industries throughout Canada. Visit Novamen Inc. to learn more about the chemical solutions you need more accessible, efficient, and cost effective than it has ever been.
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