In any type of application where coolant is used in machining or other types of processes, there is always slight amounts of oil that are released into the coolant during operation. This oil can be the slight surface oil applied to metals to prevent corrosion, or it can be lubrication oil from the equipment itself. Hydraulic system oil can also be released into the coolant liquid, which reduces the effectiveness of the coolant as the oil level increases.
Typically, this tramp oil is in extremely small droplet sizes as it is initially released into the coolant stream. However, once the coolant is flushed back into the sump or reservoir, the tramp oil coalesces, and can eventually form a notable film or thicker layer over the surface of the coolant.
There are options in removing this tramp oil from the coolant. A tramp oil skimmer is an effective way to remove the surface layer of oil, thereby extending the life of the coolant as well as its ability to provide the cooling needed for precision machining and equipment operation.
How They Operate
The key to any type of tramp oil skimmer is a simple operation that is low-maintenance and also highly effective. Different options include belt types of systems, where a belt moves under and up through the surface, pulling the tramp oil to a reservoir where it is removed from the belt and collected.
Other systems use a floating skimmer, which is ideal for quickly removing oil from a large surface area. The tramp oil skimmer can be adjusted to accommodate different types of oils and different coolants. The skimmer is made of a plastic material that attracts the oil. The system also includes a pump process to move the coolant through a filter and through additional coalescing media to remove mechanically dispersed oils and any solids.
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