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Blanketing is one of the three main inerting applications to combat the oxidation challenge. The air in the empty or headspace around a product can contain moisture and oxygen. This ambient air can react with the product to create explosive mixtures or degrade quality through oxidation or the absorption of moisture. But you can replace this air with high-purity nitrogen or another dry, inert gas so it does not react with the product. This is referred to as blanketing.
When storing highly volatile substances or substances prone to oxidation, safety and product preservation are of paramount importance. Blanketing helps to ensure that constant, inert conditions are maintained for a product, for example in a vessel. This can prevent explosions, discoloration, polymerization, degradation of foodstuffs or beverages and other undesirable changes in quality. Blanketing maintains a safe and dependable protective layer of gas on top of the substance.
What industries rely on blanketing?
Many different sectors rely on blanketing. In the case of foodstuffs, for instance, nitrogen and nitrogen mixtures are a safe and reliable way to protect food and liquids/oils in vessels and storage tanks against degradation. An inert atmosphere in and around foodstuffs stabilizes the product and increases shelf-life. Refineries and chemical plants also commonly use blanketing gases such as nitrogen and carbon dioxide to create protective atmospheres in storage tanks and vessels containing flammable liquids or solids. In addition to preventing fires and explosions, these gases are also used in these industries to maintain a dry inert atmosphere and prevent corrosion of industrially cleaned piping and vessels.
What gases are best for blanketing?
Dry inert gases such as nitrogen and carbon dioxide are most commonly used for industrial blanketing applications. Nitrogen blanketing, for example, is ideal for food tanks holding processed and finished oils.
Help from Linde
We deliver automatic solutions with specially designed high-precision valve control systems for inert gas blanketing in food tanks or industrial vessels. By monitoring the pressure of the inert gas stream and/or the oxygen level in the exhaust gas, these valves automatically adjust the nitrogen or carbon dioxide content to maintain a constant protective blanket, regardless of whether the tank is being filled or emptied.