Jan 16, 2023
Prep for Stack Testing: at the Burner
We’ve begun the new year’s Toolbox Tip series from AsphaltPro Magazine with a new set of production-related talks to help prep the system for stack testing. With emissions reduction all the rage, you’ve probably already installed advanced technologies for ensuring your lowest possible impact on the environment. Now let’s look at ways to ensure those new technologies are functioning at optimum levels. This week, let’s look at the all-important burner.
One of the first variables you want to consider when assessing the efficiency of your burner is the type of fuel you’re feeding it. Your options run the gamut from waste oil to LNG to propane and so on. In some parts of the country, agencies have mandated the type of fuel and the type of burner you can use for your business, but some agencies still allow industry experts—rather than environmental activists—to decide how best to optimize fuel efficiency with burner type and production parameters.
Your total air burner running with a PLC and variable frequency drive might be all your operation needs for the tonnage and type of mixes you produce. Or you might be ready to mix fuels feeding into an ultra lo-NOx burner to perfect the flame and temperature for your mix designs.
Notice this is all to regulate the flame and temperature for the mix design at hand. Your goal—along with producing a long-lasting pavement mix—should be to reduce any chance of blue smoke or particulate emission coming off your specific mix whether it’s a straight mix or one with high-RAP, polymer modification, warm-mix asphalt additives, recycled plastic waste or some other technology involved.
Each additive, fiber, polymer or extra ingredient you introduce to your mix design will influence moisture content or time to coat the aggregate or what have you. That means you want to watch your burner for its optimum flame and optimum efficiency. That perfection influences the numbers you see when it comes time for stack testing.
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