Heating elements are the power behind the heating appliances like the electric heaters, soldering irons, stoves, showers, toasters, clothes dryers, water heaters, hair dryers, etc. that we use on a daily basis. Industrial heating elements are important in power mechanisms like diffusion pumps, liquid immersion heaters, furnaces, and kilns.
Advances in technology have allowed heating elements to become more intuitive, sensitive, environmentally conscious and cost-effective. Assemblies for heating element now incorporate things like Wi-Fi control, LED screens, digital keypads, smart meters, etc to maintain heating schedules and temperatures. These features allow heating elements to be extremely precise and complex.
Industrial heating elements come in a plethora of choices and functions. Some of them are:
Immersion Heating Element: They are fast, efficient and cost-effective heating solutions to heat up gases and liquids under immersion without malfunctioning. They are used to heat mild acids, chemical solutions, plating baths, water, salts, oils, air, etc.
Quartz Heating Element: These convert electrical currents into infrared rays via special resistors and produce rapid heat in the process. The fast speed of heating is used for thermoforming, film curing, powder coatings, paint drying, adhesive sealing, etc.
Flexible Heating Element: These heating elements are made thin and bend easily to fit into various shapes and sizes to provide heating requirements to smaller spaces. They are of various types that depend upon their application and usage.
Infrared Heating Element: They are support heaters that produce heat by electromagnetic radiation in the form of infrared waves and used in conjunction with other heaters that heat the air or liquid on a large scale like pressure vessel heating, industrial ovens, boilers, storage tank heating, steam generation, water treatment plants, etc.
Wire Heating Element: Wire heating elements in the form of coils are the most commonly used heating element for commercial drying processes like brick kilns and many other dryers used in the food industry.
Ceramic Heating Element: This heating element is used for convection heating in furnaces, semiconductors, etc. They have several varieties that fall under two basic functionalities – molybdenum disilicide and PTC. Molybdenum Disilicide exists as both a metal and a ceramic and has an extremely high melting point of 3690 F which is ideal for glass manufacturing. PTC or positive thermal coefficient for resistance is another ceramic used in space heaters, automotive rear-window defrost heaters and expensive hair dryers which provides heating when resistance is applied making them easier to control.
Electric Heating Element: They are mostly employed in the service of industrial electric heaters and are the simplest of a lot of heating elements.
Cartridge Heater: They provide heat to equipment parts in confined spaces like foam fabricating, food processing and packaging, metal fabricating, plastic fabricating, etc.
Metal-based Heating Elements: These comprise of some of the most easily available and used even in household heating elements that come in various combinations of metals as per the need. Nichrome Heating Elements are more common and use an alloy of nickel and chromium whereas Resistance Wire Heating Element uses a set of high resistant wires and ribbons to serve as resistance points to produce heat.