Specialist installs humidifier at tobacco plant

12th February 2021 By: Khutso Maphatsoe - journalist

Humidification specialist Humidair, in collaboration with air conditioning contractor Fifty-two Engineering, completed a humidification project for a tobacco company in Edenvale, Gauteng at the end of last year.

The project entailed the installation of large JetSpray humidifier systems comprising 90 nozzles, delivering almost 600 ℓ/h of water.

The humidifiers were installed at the plant to keep the tobacco from drying out during production and the room has to be kept at 65% relative humidity (RH).

Fifty-two Engineering MD John Parry explains that this is a two pipe system, one for the compressed air and the other for the delivery of the water. The nozzles are clamped onto the compressed air pipe and there is a small connecting hose from the water pipe to each of the nozzles.

Although the installation of these systems is not complicated, it does require an experienced installation team to ensure success when it comes to completion and commissioning.

“Using the JetSpray instead of a boiler type humidifier allows for a huge power consumption saving, plus the customer receives automatic cooling as a bonus,” he says.

Parry adds that the nozzle of the JetSpray humidifier utilises very reliable nozzles that atomise the water into a fine mist by balancing the water and air pressures to ensure that there is no excess water, dripping nozzles or precipitation while humidifying, which was a problem with the humidifiers of high pressure nozzle systems. The water supply can be untreated potable water supply, but the system is also supplied with an inline, five micron water filter as well as the Condair Argentisan sterilising set. In critical applications such as abattoirs, ultraviolet light sterilisation is also a prerequisite.

“The nozzles are self-cleaning at predetermined intervals were the water is drained from the system and the compressed air is used to clean the nozzles, which keeps maintenance to a minimum.”

The drainage requirements are also essential to prevent bacterial growth, especially if there is no demand and the water could stagnate in the water lines.

Parry adds that the JetSpray humidifier’s precision-engineered self-cleaning nozzles have the lowest air consumption of any air and water humidifier in South Africa. The drip-free nozzles produce sprays of just 7.5 μm and have a ten-year warranty.

Further, the JetSpray humidifiers can range from a two-nozzle to a 240-nozzle systems and can be bought directly from Humidair.

The JetSpray is equipped with the latest remote digital interface panel that controls the water and air pressures and can be mounted up to 100 m away from the nozzles.

JetSpray humidifiers are used in a variety of projects in sectors such as the automotive, food and printing industries to name a few, where the RH control is required for the product protection or static control. The system has proven to be well suited to low temperature and high RH requirements in fresh produce and abattoir applications, where control requirements would be 95% RH and 2 °C.

Parry concludes that the JetSpray humidifier has proven to be a game changer for many industries over the years. The design of the spray makes it the perfect fit for any company’s humidification process.