p13651 soluble wax melter n.
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P13651: Soluble Wax Melter. Project Team: Rachael Hamilton – Team Leader Michael Blachowicz – Lead Engineer Valentina Mejia – Engineer Jonathan Waldron – Engineer Alex Kibbe – Engineer Sean Sutton - Engineer. Agenda. Project Description Final Design Concept Project Development

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p13651 soluble wax melter
P13651: Soluble Wax Melter

Project Team:

Rachael Hamilton – Team Leader

Michael Blachowicz – Lead Engineer

Valentina Mejia – Engineer

Jonathan Waldron – Engineer

Alex Kibbe – Engineer

Sean Sutton - Engineer

  • Project Description
  • Final Design Concept
  • Project Development
  • Testing Results
  • Current state of project
  • Objective project evaluation
  • Conclusions
  • Questions
project description
Project Description
  • Project Goal: Design a device that will successfully melt and transport soluble and non-soluble wax
  • Original Design

for MPI 55 C-series Wax Melter

  • Scaled back project to focus on

wax processing

    • Achieve 5o lbs/hour flow rate
    • Does not burn, separate wax
    • No clogging of wax
product development
Product Development
  • Realized Schedule: issues with
    • Finalizing design: Scaled-back project in MSD II Week 3
    • Construction set-backs
final design concept1
Final Design Concept
  • Realized machine: A known amount of wax is hand fed into the top of the tank, it is allowed to melt until contents appear completely melted, hand actuated door at base of tank is opened to let out wax to bucket placed under the machine
testing results
Testing Results
  • Time to steady state with no wax
    • Issue with PID controller initially, led us to just use on/off control.
    • Time to steady state was around four minutes from room temperature and with a Tsp of 180°F.

Steady state was about reached here in this test, but the control was not set up properly and began to cause the temperature to fluctuate.

testing results1
Testing Results
  • Tested the temperature difference across the surface around the inside of the tank (melting surface).
  • Tested the difference from the base to the top while heating
    • Concluded that there is a temperature difference from the base of the tank to the top because of heat loss due to convection at the top
  • Tested radial difference from the base to the top
    • Concluded that there was a minimal temperature difference along a radial axis in the tank, +-5 °F
    • With thermocouple variation, the temperature is close to uniform along a radius
testing results2
Testing Results

Here you can see the radial test temperatures are all within a reasonable range with each other. The significant difference between the bottom and the top is due to the tests being conducted at different times while heating. The first temperature is the temperature read by the thermocouple and the second is the adjusted temperature from calibration.

testing results3
Testing Results
  • Test melt 1 was melting exactly one gallon of KC-4088D. This was 8 pounds 6 pounces in weight
  • Tsp was set at 180°F
  • Took temperature readings every 10 seconds
  • Temperature saw an increase when the wax transitioned from solid to mostly liquid
  • Time to melt 1 gallon was 10 minutes
testing results5
Testing Results
  • Test melt 2 involved adding 1 gallon of wax to the melter and adding a second gallon of wax on top once the first batch was mostly liquid.
    • 8 pounds 6 ounces was added both times
  • Tsp was set to 200°F
  • Total time to melt 16 pounds and 12 ounces was 27 minutes. This translates to 37.22 pounds per hour
testing results7
Testing Results
  • The goal of Test melt 3 was to see how long it took to melt 25 pounds of wax
    • 8 pounds 9 ounces added initially, then 8 pounds 6 ounces followed by another 8 pounds 6 ounces
  • Tsp was set to 205°F
  • The total time to melt 3 gallons of wax (25.4167 lbs) was 45 minutes. This translates to a melt rate of 33.889 pounds per hour.
issues while testing
Issues While Testing
  • Physically holds 1 gallon of solid wax at a time
  • Torque from the motor caused the sprocket on the shaft to start spinning and stop mixing in the system
    • Caused by motor torque and binding of the sprocket and shaft
    • Fixed by dropping a pin through the sprocket to keep it from slipping on the shaft
  • Melted wax leaving the system would come in contact with chain
    • A chain guard or some sort of protection should be used to prevent this
current state of project
Current State of Project
  • Current machine capable of melting soluble wax with fibers
    • No issues with clogging
    • Wax does not separate or burn
    • Stirring mechanism succeeds in inducing flow during operation
    • Temperature variation above spec, but even heating to produce a thoroughly melted batch
  • Insignificant testing to determine hourly output
  • Testing procedure did not achieve 50 lbs/hour
  • Cleaning an issue if testing different waxes
further work
Further Work
  • Optimize tank loading to achieve maximum flow rate
    • 1 gallon achieved average hourly flow rate of 51 lbs/hour
    • Higher loading: ~ 34 lbs/hour
  • Optimize placement and shape of stirring blades
  • Improve PID control of heater
  • Modify design to improve ease of cleaning
    • Make water-tight for cleaning process
    • Allow testing with other waxes
  • Incorporate a novel aspect to the design
    • Heat stir rods and/or stirring shaft
  • Design does not meet all customer specs and is not a novel design
  • System is capable of processing water-soluble wax, has potential to meet desired flow rate
  • Things to do differently
    • Better communication amongst group and with customer
    • Use acquired experience to better develop and utilize risk assessment