Ultrasonic Machining – A New Use for Ultrasonics?

Over the years, there have been several anecdotal references to otherwise unexplained changes in the properties of surfaces exposed to ultrasonic energy in a liquid.  In some cases, it would make sense that the change was due to increased cleanliness.  In others, however, the benefit of cleanliness alone would seem questionable.  One incident in particular …

Sound Physics – Nodes and Antinodes – Part I

I’ve made reference in the blog before to the fact that some surfaces are good candidates for ultrasonic cleaning while others are either difficult or impossible to clean.  In general, surfaces that are hard (metal, glass) are easily cleaned using ultrasonics while softer surfaces (rubber, soft plastic) resist ultrasonic cleaning.  The reason has to do …

Chemical Concentration – Economic and Process Considerations (cont.)

My previous blog addressed the chemical cost of using too much (or perhaps too little) “soap” in a cleaning process based on chemical cost.  Today we look at process issues. You might be saying, “What the heck?  So I use too much chemical.  Soap is cheap and I look at it as “insurance”.”  Well, that “insurance” …

Chemical Concentration – Economic and Process Considerations

I have talked before on the blog about the subject of chemical concentration and its relationship to cleaning.  A couple of recent incidents prompt me to re-address the subject of chemical concentration but from a little different angle. It’s a “no-brainer” that cleaning chemicals are expensive and, with the possible exception of heat and labor, …

Cleanliness Testing – White Glove and Swab Tests

I have spent considerable time on the blog disclosing and discussing a variety of cleanliness testing methods.  A couple of tests that escaped earlier discussion, however, are the “white glove” test and the closely-related “swab” test.  These tests are conducted by rubbing or wiping a surface using a white (usually cotton) glove or a cotton …

Common Misconceptions About Oil Removal Using Oil Coalescers

Preceding blogs have described oil removal techniques for industrial cleaning in some detail.  It would be nice if this was always a simple consideration – but it is not! The case for using an oil coalescer is pretty clear cut as long as the cleaning chemistry is truly a “splitter” AND, THE OIL IS NOT WATER SOLUBLE.  …

Chemistry – Oil Splitting and Oil Emulsification – Part 2

“Splitting” of oil from a surface as described in a preceding blog is a part of nearly any oil removal process. Note – Even cleaning chemistry that is generally classified as an “emulsifier” has ingredients to promote the initial “splitting” of the oil from the surface being cleaned.  These ingredients are often called “surface active …

Chemistry – Oil Splitting and Oil Emulsification – Part 1

As I have said before on this blog, I am not a chemist.  Whatever I say about chemistry on the blog is expressed in layman’s terms and is based on practical experience and not on any deep understanding I have of the properties of chemicals. The usefulness of any information provided here applies only to …