Basic Chemicals Many chemical manufacturing processes depend on basic chemical products such as hydrochloric acid, sulphuric acid, caustic soda, hydrogen peroxide and similar products as basic building blocks or catalysts for the reactions required to produce the end products. Many of these chemicals are both corrosive and toxic which means that they must be handled carefully. Historically such products were amongst the first to be produced, in some cases the history dating back more than 100 years. From the beginning the corrosive nature of such products was understood and materials of construction included lead lining, rubber lining, glass enamelling, and even in some cases the use of wood in some reactors and filters.
Progressively lining with lead and rubber has been largely phased out, the former due to its own hazardous properties, the latter due to its vulnerability to mechanical damage and the increasing cost of the intensely manual process of applying the linings. In the high volume continuous processes used to produce most basic chemicals the materials of construction used to handle any corrosive products have become standardised on PTFE and PFA linings where operating temperatures allow, and exotic metals and alloys wherever temperatures above 200 deg C and pressures above 19 barg are required.
CRP products are widely used for handling chemicals such as hydrochloric acid, hydrofluoric acid, chromic acid, and various derivative compounds of the halogens such as chlorides, bromides, and fluorides. Generally in the basic chemicals industry component sizes are larger than for other more general purpose fine chemical production and the range of paste extruded PTFE lined spools and PFA lined fittings up to 12” (300mm) nominal bore is ideally suited to the demands of this industry.
For a major producer of chromic acid, an exceptionally difficult product to handle, we have supplied a wide range of pipe, fittings, ball valves, and other specialised PFA lined products which perform excellently in this service and provide the optimum materials solution to the demands of the process together with the very high safety levels needed.
For the handling of bromine and bromine derived chemicals we have produced an enhanced range of products with PFA linings for the fittings and special extra heavy duty paste extruded PTFE liners for the pipe spools to replace the use of the older fluoropolymer material PVDF which has similar product resistance but considerably lower temperature resistance.
PTFE lined columns, ball valves, and lined piping is extensively used in the production of Hydrofluoric acid, and a new range of PFA lined ball valves designed to ASME class 300 has recently been introduced by us to the industry.