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Dry Ice Industry FAQ

All you need to know about Dry Ice Industry

The dry ice industry is an extremely large field with a lot of expertise that not everyone knows. This FAQ page is the place to go for all the information you need about dry ice, dry ice applications, and dry ice production systems.

Dry Ice Faqs

Dry ice is the solid form of carbon dioxide (CO2) compare to Normal ice (frozen water) which is made up of crystalline hexagonal structures, but because dry ice is so cold (-78.5C), its molecules are locked into a more dense form, like the crystals in snowflakes. It has no liquid state at atmospheric pressure, so it’s called a solid even though it is actually gas.

A liquid CO2 tank is needed as well as a three-phase power supply to run the machine. There should also be an exhaust system; supply and support lines should be included, and there should be adequate floor space for both the dry ice production machine and dry ice storage.

Specco2’s conversion rate is only 2.2 pounds of liquefied CO2 to 1 pound of solid dry ice, while the industry average is 2.7 pounds of LCO2 to 1 pound of dry ice.

Dry ice is the solid form of carbon dioxide (CO2). In order to create dry ice, CO2 gas is pressurized and cooled to form liquid CO2 (LCO2) and is then injected into a pelletizer, or dry ice production unit. Within the pelletizer, the pressurized LCO2 is released to atmospheric pressure, which causes it to solidify into a snow-like consistency. This is then compressed into pellets, blocks, or slabs.

 

Dry ice can be produced on demand using a dry ice production machine (pelletizer or slice maker). Producing your own dry ice must be economically viable and the amount of dry ice used on a daily and weekly basis must be considered.

Pelletizers, slice makers, and reformers can be equipped with multiple dies to produce a range of extrusion sizes (3mm to 19mm) and final product size. Dry ice production equipment can produce, dose, and package multiple sizes of dry ice for a broad range of solutions.

Making your own dry ice may save you a lot of time and money while also removing hassles in the proper scenario. Producing your own dry ice allows you to have better control over your production, processing, and cold chain management systems, while also decreasing waste and operating expenses.

You can assess whether manufacturing your own dry ice is suitable for you by completing a few easy questions. Among these are the following:

  • How much dry ice do you use on a weekly/monthly basis?
  • What are your current shipping costs?
  • Is dry ice used in your operation’s critical path?
  • Do you squander a lot of dry ice each week?
  • Is your facility equipped with a CO2 tank and three-phase power?

Most of our customers purchase their dry ice pellets or blocks from industrial gas suppliers, welding supply companies and other regional or local suppliers. Dry ice can be purchased on an as needed basis or a regular delivery can be scheduled to your facility. Most major metropolitan areas have regular delivery trucks that cover 100 mile radiuses. Dry ice can also be shipped using a common carrier and it is delivered in insulated containers.

For manufacturers who need large quantities of dry ice on a regular basis or that work in isolated locations, we suggest considering a dry ice production machine to keep up with high demand.

Dry ice is a commodity, and costs vary depending on location.

The amount of dry ice required to clean successfully varies by application and can also vary substantially amongst dry ice blasting systems.

Dry ice blasting equipment’s typical dry ice consumption ranges from 0.7 lbs (0.32 kg) per minute for a MicroParticle system to 2 1/2 lbs (1.1 kg) per minute for a pellet system.

Dry ice blasting systems using pellets typically consume 100 cfm (2.8 m3/min) at 80 psi (5.5 bar), while MicroParticle systems typically consume 30 cfm (0.9 m3/min) at 80 psi (5.5 bar). Low flow nozzles for the MicroParticle systems can consume as little as 12 cfm (0.3 m³/min) at 80 psi (5.5 bar). However, your needs will depend on your application.

 

To store dry ice, keep it in a well-insulated container in an area that stays below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Depending on your climate and the thickness of your container, your dry ice may sublimate (vanish) at a rate of 2% to 10% per day.

Dry ice blasting can be used for many applications, including cleaning, surface preparation, and parts finishing, in a variety of industries.

Dry ice blasting is extremely effective in removing paint or polymers that have a weak bond. It also can be used on delicate or artistic pieces, but is unlikely to be effective in just dry ice alone. Other methods must be used to remove all paint, or those pieces with a strong bond.

Dry ice blasting is an effective method for removing loose rust, surface rust, oxidation, and salts. To remove deeply adhered oxidation or pits, you may have to pre-sand the area prior to dry ice blasting. Dry ice can leave white residue called a white metal finish.

Dry ice blasting is an effective method for removing loose rust, surface rust, oxidation, and salts. To remove deeply adhered oxidation or pits, you may have to pre-sand the area prior to dry ice blasting. Dry ice can leave white residue called a white metal finish.

Dry ice blasting removes 99.9% of mold spores faster than traditional cleaning methods when IAQA standards are followed. This process eliminates manual cleaning and does not create secondary waste, which reduces time and labor costs and project time. The dry ice blasting process does not utilize chemicals and has the ability to deodorize affected areas.

We have a number of different machine options depending on your application, air supply, and budget. Contact Specco2 to find out what the best machine will be for you.

Dry ice blasting is an ideal solution for those looking for an environmentally friendly cleaning solution.

  1. Dry ice is made of reclaimed CO2
    All dry ice used in the dry ice blasting process is made from reclaimed CO2, which is a byproduct of other industrial processes. This CO2, which would have otherwise been released into the atmosphere, is captured and given new life as dry ice. Dry ice blasting does not produce more CO2.
  2. Dry ice blasting eliminates harmful secondary waste
    When the dry ice impacts the surface being cleaned, it sublimates – turns directly from a solid to a gas—and thus does not produce secondary waste. Similar techniques leave behind a residue that must be cleaned up with the contaminant. This media can become hazardous and create downstream contamination and harm the surrounding area and installations.
  3. Dry ice blasting is non-toxic and eliminates need for chemical solvents
    The dry ice used in the dry ice blasting process is a food grade media and is EPA, FDA and USDA approved for use around food manufacturing. It is colorless, tasteless, odorless and non-toxic. Dry ice blasting eliminates the need for chemical cleaning solvents in many applications.

When working with CO2, precaution must always be taken to ensure that the area is sufficiently ventilated and that proper PPE is administered when dealing with the liquid or solid form of CO2 (dry ice).

When operating a dry ice blaster proper protection should be worn, such as ear plugs, eyewear, gloves, and closed-toed shoes. Steel-toed shoes are useful but not necessary.

Dry ice blasting does not leave residue or waste. Dry ice sublimates upon impact with the surface being cleaned, which results in no secondary waste, no residue and no introduction of moisture. This eliminates extra cleanup, disposal of secondary waste streams and additional cleaning preparation, such as masking delicate sensors or wrapping electronic components before cleaning. This significantly reduces the duration of cleaning projects and the resulting shutdowns.

Elimination of secondary waste also allows equipment to be cleaned while online and still operating.

 

Integrated dry ice blasting systems combine dry ice production and one or more blasting system into one unit; allowing for continuous, completely automated blasting.

From simple customization to full automation, each integrated system can be engineered to meet specific customer requirements.

These systems are commonly used to provide cost effective cleaning and surface preparation solutions and are used extensively in the automotive OEM, tire, aerospace, semiconductor and many other industries.

Insulated Boxes Faqs

The main purpose of an insulated box is to keep the temperature inside stable and prevent the contents from getting damaged due to any kind of physical or chemical change

An insulating box/container is a container made with foam insulation and rigid walls. It is used for transporting or storing items at low temperatures.

An insulated enclosure is a box made from wood or metal, insulated with polystyrene sheets and thermal adhesive. This can be built using basic tools and scrap materials. However for better performance and minimize the risk of damaging your goods we will recommend to go for a professional solution like Olivo’ products.

Despite what the packaging industry wants people to believe, there are some problems with polystyrene. While insulation is a great solution for keeping food at the right temperature, polystyrene is less effective when it comes to protecting fragile items.

The cost of an insulated container will vary based on the size and materials used. Our insulated containers are made from high-quality materials that will keep your food and drinks cold for up to 12 hours. Contact us to receive our insulated container pricing

Insulated containers are popular with homeowners, businesses, and anyone needing to transport perishables. They’re used to transport food items that need to stay cold. Insulated boxes are also a good choice to transport medicine.

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How does it clean?

Dry ice cleaning uses solid CO, a non-abrasive media that won't damage surfaces or equipment. The super cooled dry ice pellets or particles are accelerated at supersonic speeds and sublimate on impact, resulting in the surface being cleaned, lifting dirt and contaminants off the underlying substrate.

How it works...

Instead of abrasive media to grind surfaces (and damage them), Cold Jet uses dry ice (Solid CO2) accelerated at supersonic speeds that sublimate upon impact and lift contaminants from substrates.

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We've been able to cut back on our use of chemical solvents. We use about 25% of what we used to, which makes us a much more environmentally responsible company

Matt Schrift Engineer Robotworx

It's better for the people and for the environment. This technology has shaved time and allowed us to reduce our use of chemicals.

Bob Hawkey Vers-Trim

Using dry ice cleaning reduces harmful air emission and generally creates no addition to the volume of the cleaning process waste stream...in-process machinery can be cleaned on-line, resulting in decreased labor cost and less down-time.

EPA 905-F-00-026 EPA technical fact sheet for TCA hazard and alternatives

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