Excess humidity in the air used to dry plastic pellets has several adverse effects on the quality of the products produced. The strength of the product is decreased. The surface of the product can be blemished. The product can have a ‘cloudy’ appearance.
Moisture needs to be measured in feed stock gases in the manufacture of polymers . For example, pre-dried benzene is fed in to a reactor containing hydrochloric acid – if the dryers are not operating properly moisture in the benzene promotes acid corrosion of the reactor and process lines. Several processes require water concentrations of specific values to optimise efficiency and yield; in such cases more sophisticated instruments are required.
Hydrogen is used to cool large, stationary generators because of its high heat capacity and low viscosity, and must be kept dry to maintain both of these properties. Ambient moisture is considered a contaminant, which will reduce the heat capacity and increase the viscosity of the cooling hydrogen.
The Advanced Gas Cooled Reactor uses carbon dioxide gas to transfer heat from the nuclear fission core to the water boiler for steam generation. The moisture content needs to be monitored to avoid corrosion damage, and continuous moisture monitoring acts as a boiler leak detector or bulk moisture meter.
The presence of humidity in a blanketing gas for sensitive instruments can cause corrosion problems, rapid changes incalibration and loss of sensitivity. The presence of oil contamination in compressors can cause similar problems.
Foil-wrapped foods are often sealed with air, or an inert gas. It is possible to extend the storage life of the food if the air trapped between the foil and the food is replaced with nitrogen of very low moisture content .
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