Hoffert Fuel Oil/Water Emulsion System Effects Boiler Fuel Savings

Hoffert Manufacturing Company of Jacksonville, Fla., recently reported it has successfully produced, without the aid of Federal energy grants, a perfected fuel oil/water emulsion system called Fire-Brite. A Fire-Brite installation aboard a ship, according to the Hoffert announcement, has effected a dramatic saving of one barrel of fuel oil an hour or 24 barrels saved per day, resulting in an economic gain of over $500 daily.

In a local shoreside installation, Hoffert reports a direct saving of 3.6 percent has been made in fuel. In addition, there has been reduced emissions to the atmosphere.

Pollution control and energy savings has been the result of intensive research in the fuel oil/water emulsion field, according to Bill Patterson, vice president of the newly established Hoffert Manufacturing Company, a subsidiary of Hoffert Marine Inc.

Mr. Patterson brought out that excess air is detrimental, not only to efficiency by carrying the heat away from the boiler, but the unnecessary oxygen in this air is a source of oxidation for the formation of sulfuric and nitrous oxides.

"Not only is the Fire-Brite fuel oil/water emulsion system dramatic in its savings, but it is dramatic in the quantitative reduction of sulfur oxides released to the atmosphere because the secondary atomization allows the boiler to be operated with minimum excess air. As the emulsified fuel burns more completely, carbon particulates released to the atmosphere are also diminished," Mr. Patterson said. He added that the boiler fireside remains clean, thereby adding to savings in boiler maintenance and keeping top efficiency.

The Fire-Brite system utilizes a small percentage of water varying from 3 to 10 percent being homogenized in the fuel. This quantity of water takes the form of microscopic bubbles uniformly sized to 2 to 3 microns with each of the bubbles enveloped by a film of oil. When the emulsified fuel reaches the boiler furnace, each of the water bubbles bursts into steam, shattering its attendant oil envelope into a finely atomized mist that presents much more oil surface to the flame. It is this secondary atomization that allows the decrease of the percentage of fuel consumption upon the boiler design.

Dr. Vito Agosta, noted international scholar and research scientist, is the designer of the emulsor used in the Fire-Brite.

Dr. Agosta is professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at the Polytechnic Institute of New York. Hoffert Manufacturing acquired the patent in March of this year.

For further information and free literature on the Fire-Brite system from Hoffert Manufacturing, Write 18 on Reader Service Card

Other stories from December 1980 issue


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