Vortex Tubes are an effective, low cost solution to a wide variety of industrial spot and process cooling needs. With no moving parts, a vortex tube spins compressed air to separate the air into cold and hot air streams.
While French physicist Georges Ranque is credited with inventing the vortex tube in 1930, Vortec was the first company to develop and apply this phenomenon into practical and effective cooling solutions for industrial use.
How a Vortex Tube Works
Fluid (air) that rotates around an axis (like a tornado) is called a vortex.
A Vortex Tube creates cold air and hot air by forcing compressed air through a generation chamber which spins the air centrifugally along the inner walls of the Tube at a high rate of speed (1,000,000 RPM) toward the control valve.
A percentage of the hot, high-speed air is permitted to exit at the control valve.
The remainder of the (now slower) air stream is forced to counter flow up through the centre of the high-speed air stream, giving up heat, through the centre of the generation chamber finally exiting through the opposite end as extremely cold air.
Vortex tubes generate temperatures down to 100°F below inlet air temperature.
A control valve located in the hot exhaust end can be used to adjust the temperature drop and rise for all Vortex Tubes.
Vortex Tubes have a very wide range of application for industrial spot cooling on machines, assembly lines and processes.
Cool Machining Operations
Set solders and adhesives
Cool plastic injection moulds
Dry ink on labels and bottles
Dehumidify gas operations
Cool heat seal operations
Thermal test sensors and choke units
Cool cutter blades
Temperature cycle parts
Features and Benefits
Uses only compressed air – no electricity or refrigerants
Maintenance free – no moving parts
Highly reliable – no moving parts
Compact and lightweight
Cycle repeatability with ± 1 °
Drops inlet temperature by up to 100°F
Vortex tubes produce up to 6000 BTU/hr (1757 watts) of refrigeration and temperatures as low as -40 deg to solve a variety of industrial spot cooling and process cooling needs. With no moving parts, a vortex tube is highly reliable and inexpensive; and requires no electrical connection at the cooling site. Vortex tubes cool instantly, relying on compressed air spinning in the tube to separate the air into cold and hot air streams.
Vortex tubes are a compact source of refrigeration and cooling, with models ranging from 6 – 13 inches (150 – 330 mm) long and cooling capacities ranging from 100 – 6000 BTU/hour (29 – 1757 watts). Vortex tube performance is easily adjustable by changing the inlet air pressure, ratio of cool air to exhaust or by changing the generator in the tube itself. And while normally used for cooling, vortex tubes can also be used for heating applications, merely by channeling the exhaust hot air to the application.
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