How do Batch ovens differ from other industrial ovens?
Batch ovens are designed for processes where throughput must be in “batches” whereas the continuous conveyor ovens as its name imply are used mainly for continuous processes. A company that requires flexibility will benefit from Batch ovens because they can process single large parts or a significant amount of small parts in a single process run. The Batch ovens will also allow production to start and stop as required because the system of processing is not a continuous flow. However, there are also instances when Batch ovens are not the most economical choice for handling extremely high volume production runs. Conveyor ovens are highly automated so that manual handling is minimized but there are product shape and size restrictions. Choosing between the batch oven and other industrial ovens for curing will often depend on the specific application including all sorts of variables that include size, shape, thickness, composition of the material, the desired production throughput, operating costs and type of powder that will be used.
Factor that affect the choice for curing ovens
- Heat transfer. In industrial ovens, heat transfer is through forced convection wherein air is forced over a hot surface heat and transferred to air. Convection heating will require contact between the air flow and solid part. In the forced-air Batch ovens, only the flow of air that comes into contact with the part will actually transfer heat. The effectiveness of heat transfer is based on the air volume that is circulated within the oven.
- Efficiency. In industrial ovens is evaluated through the heat loss by airflow through the exhaust system, the heat carry-out by product absorption and the heat carry-out through conveyor absorption. There is also heat loss that occurs through the roof, walls and other openings of the industrial oven.
- Energy sources. The most common energy source for industrial ovens is electricity but there are also ovens that are gas powered for high volume production. If the facility has a steam line, it can also be used as power source. Steam can also transfer heat through forced convection.
- Temperature control. Critical items that have to considered in a temperature controller include temperature range, type of input sensor, type of output required and the number of outputs. The temperature control systems rely on the controller to accurately control process temperature using the PID feedback controller. PID or proportional integral derivative controller is widely used as an industrial control system because it minimizes errors by adjusting process control inputs.
- Safety features. A standby fluid thermostat must be installed in order to cut off the heat when the temperature overshoots. Blower systems safeguard the motors by ensuring that oven heat will not penetrate.