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A small electric flash evaporator to dewater WVO.
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Here is a second angle of the intended final flash tank unit. The cluster of fittings located on the bottom end of the heater pipe allows for a drain valve, a mechanical pressure gauge, and an electric pressure sensor (that may not actualy be necessary) to control the pump pressure.

Imageoverview_-_side.jpg (129 Kb, 349 downloads) different angle
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Below is a picture of the setup I am using to do flash tank testing. For this testing I am using my original prototype heater pipe (silver thing on top, pipe wrapped in insulation then covered with several layers of tinfoil).

The downturned steam output pipe did not work as expected, seems hot steam wants to float up rather than down. I replaced the down pipe with a short section of 1 inch pipe with a "T" where it connects to the tank. The bottom of the "T" is open, this allows cool air to rise with the steam, the Idea was for the cool air to cool the steam until it condensed and could be collected as it dripped out the bottom of the "T", didn't work, steam never condensed even when I added another 10 inch piece of up pipe ? There was not a lot of steam but the inside of the pipe did not even show any condensation.

Problem -- The oil dried through this unit was not totaly dry, doing the "frypan bubble" test showed several dime-sized patches of extremely small bubbles, probably not enough water to be a problem but from prior running of this unit into open air I know it will completely remove all the water. I assume the problem is with condensation inside the flash tank as I did find a couple 1/8 inch drops of water in the oil when draining the tank after it cooled.

I will be adding another fitting to the back of the tank, just above the top of the oil level. I will inject just a tiny bit of compressed air through this in an attempt to "sweep" all the vapor out through the steam pipe. I hope this will remove all the water vapor and also let me use the downturned outlet pipe inside a second tank So that the steam can be condensed rather than released into the air.?

Imageflash_tank_with_proto_heater_pipe.JPG (144 Kb, 325 downloads) prototype testing
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This is a picture of the very small wispy amount of steam that was continualy exiting the top of the upright pipe.

Imagesteam_from_pipe.JPG (134 Kb, 230 downloads) steam from pipe
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Here is a picture of the removable orifice assembly that fits down inside the flash tank. The angled plate on the bottom is the impact plate that seems to be required to insure the oil freely releases the water as vapor.

Imageorifice_assembly.JPG (104 Kb, 239 downloads) orifice assembly
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This is a picture of the orifice assembly in action while dewatering oil outside of the flash tank.

Imageorifice_head__overview-_running.JPG (224 Kb, 245 downloads) orifice assembly in action
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This is a closeup of fairly dry oil hitting the splash plate. Notice the pool of oil is nice and round and there is almost no visable point of impact in the center of this round pool of oil.

Imageimpact_closeup-dry_oil.JPG (309 Kb, 258 downloads) dry oil closeup
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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This is a closeup of WET oil hitting the splash plate. Notice that the oil pool is larger in diameter, more disrupted, and that there is a dime-sized bright foggy area just outside the point of impact. All this extra kayos is being caused by the violent release of steam.

Imageimpact_closeup-wet_oil.JPG (291 Kb, 231 downloads) wet oil closeup
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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This is an exploded view of the 400 degree tolerent hydraulic filter ftom mcmaster-carr. It has a cleanable cintered brass filter element, these are available in several micron ratings. I bought both a 25 micron and a 90 micron to test, either one is much smaller than the opening in even a .o13 orifice so this should eliminate the aggravating orifice plugging problem when doing a cold-start with this unit. It will need cleaning eventualy but this is not a problem because the filter and the orifice are easily removable as an assembly.

Imagefilter_-_opened.JPG (190 Kb, 221 downloads) filter-exploded view
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I will test the .032 orifice with 220 volt heat shortly. By timing the on/off periods of the heater I will have a better Idea of what the absolute maximum hourly flow that this design should be able to produce.

I did find that the temp of the cold oil makes more differance than I expected as to the amount of heat needed. Using the .018 orifice and With 76 degree f. input oil the 110 volt heater ran about 80% of the time but with 62 degree f. input oil it ran just about 100%, just occasionaly flickering off and then on again. I will add the preheat oil feed tube coil inside the flash tank and get a better Idea, I have everything nescicary, just need to get to it.
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks so much for your great report with photos. Now, to try to get my mind around it all!

Todd


2002 F-250, 7.3l on WVO since '04
'82 VW Rabbit diesel 1.6l na
'83 GMC 6.2l Class C RV
'85 F-350, 6.9l flat bed
'85 E-350, 6.9l cube van
2 Mercedes 300SD's
3 Chinese Changfa-style diesel generators- 12kw, 8kw & 7.5kw
Mitsubishi 3 cyl diesel generator/light tower
Kubota 2 cyl. diesel, water cooled air compressor
Onan 12.5kw air-cooled diesel genset
I run my company entirely on renewable energy including electricity from generators running on biofuels.

 
Location: El Dorado, Ark | Registered: July 04, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks for the great work Tim, and the pics lol.

If you find the compressed air blowing in tends to cool and condense the steam why not try suction instead? A small exahust fan or a pump?

Of course the compressed air might be fine. Just my gut apprehension which could be completly unfounded.


mathematical elegance -- desired result achieved with minimal complication
 
Location: Manchester UK | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I just tried to rate this a five tick rating but the ticks didn't show up. I ticked the bottom one thinking it five. It turned out to be one. Now it wont let me change my mind. Annoying. Can someone please tick the top circle to rate this a five for me? I really think it deserves it. You could do it yourself Tim. Your not being immodest just helping me out.

Thanks.


mathematical elegance -- desired result achieved with minimal complication
 
Location: Manchester UK | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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I gave it a five also which brings it up halfway, let's have someone else rate it and take it up to where it deserves to be...

Mark
 
Location: Pittsboro, North Carolina | Registered: March 07, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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ok I gave it 5
 
Registered: November 14, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks folks. That gets us up to four. Any more people willing to help make up for my error?


mathematical elegance -- desired result achieved with minimal complication
 
Location: Manchester UK | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Ant, consider it done. Smile

Paul
 
Location: Malmo, Sweden | Registered: June 18, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Paul: I'll be travelling through your neighborhood in the next couple months, and would love a chance to visit.

I'm adding my vote for a 5. This is inspiring. Do I dare start yet one more project?
 
Location: Moses Lake, WA, USA | Registered: August 15, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I finally found the time to read this thread all the way through and I can't wait to start building one of these! I notice that the last post was the 7th of November, any big developments in the last month?
 
Location: Copperhead Road | Registered: November 06, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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I am just now sorting pictures for the next posting of testing. I ran the unit for 7 hours straight without having to tweek the controls, dewatered 35 gallon of oil. I have added a second input to the flash tank so inject air across the flash region and sweep the vapor out the other side of the tank, this worked fine and the oil was completely dry using this. Needs to be refined yet but the concept works, future pictures will give a better idea of the plumbing.

Condensing the steam is giving me problems, may just not be worth it, more testing needed here. I have been succesfull in condensing the oil vapor out of the water steam so I think this is all that is actualy nescessary as it was the oil condensate that is the fire hazard and gets everything it contacts oily. The water steam can just be allowed to float away in the air. I condensed about 5 ounces of oil from the flash vapor from drying about 20 gallons of oil. More details in a few days.
 
Location: fisher,illinois,usa | Registered: June 03, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I just read all the way through the thread, and now I think I need to go take a vacation thinking about all the work Tim has put into this.

Condensed oil - you say you condensed about 5 ounces...was that from the vapors which you were 'sweeping' out of the flash tank and into the 'T' and riser pipe? And the oil condensed and dripped out the bottom of the 'T'?

Sounds to me like you've got it done. Condense the oil vapor, and let the water vapor go.

One observation...the pictures are VERY helpful, but they seem to be sorta washed-out and grainy, sorta hard to see details...are you using a digital camera? It almost looks like maybe you are capturing pics from a camcorder?...

Awesome work though. Thank you. I'm looking forward to your future updates, and building one myself.
 
Location: Portland, OR | Registered: April 08, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Sponsors    Biodiesel and SVO Forums Home    Forums  Hop To Forum Categories  Straight Vegetable Oil (SVO) as fuel  Hop To Forums  General SVO Discussion    A small electric flash evaporator to dewater WVO.

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