Fiberglass Fan

By: Susan Terlitski

Canada Blower makes the highest quality corrosion resistant fans available using Fibreglass Reinforced Plastics (FRP) technology. Decades of experience in developing ventilation systems coupled with the most advanced computer generated design and manufacturing processes produce industry-leading FRP fans and blowers.

FRP stands for fiberglass-reinforced plastics. Since the introduction of other fiber reinforcement, FRP is also used to mean fiber reinforced plastics. Other terms that are used interchangeably with FRP are reinforced thermoset plastic (RTP), reinforced thermoset resin (RTR) and glass-reinforced plastic (GRP). All of the above mentioned terms should not be confused with reinforced thermoplastic which is entirely different. There is a wide selection of thermoset resins available for most corrosion resistant applications. Unlike thermoplastics, thermoset plastics have a highly crosslinked molecular structure. The result is a flexural, tensile strength, and temperature performance that is twice that of most thermoplastics. There are several ways to fabricate FRP equipment, the following explains some of the most common methods.

Paint can actually match corrosion resistant properties of FRP, however, the industry wide data tables reflecting corrosion resistance for coatings are based on applying the product to steel without any compromise whatsoever. So much as a pin hole will cause corrosion attach and could cause eventual destruction to the coated metal products. Exhaust fans, laboratory stacks and fumehoods are very complex geometrical structures that are very difficult to coat as thoroughly as needed to guarantee against rust. We have all been to job sites and seen coated steel equipment rusting even before it is installed. Reputable manufactures may argue that they do coat every single micrometer of surface, however, once the equipment is loaded for shipping, dumps, scraps, and installation is completely out of their control. Coating thickness can range between 1.5 – 12 mils and sometimes even thicker. Final FRP corrosion barrier coat is 90 mils thickness standard. Also, the important thing to note when comparing is that, the resin used in the FRP corrosion barrier is used throughout the entire composite, therefore, the integrity is far greater and more dependable than steel coated products as the FRP will not separate or fail when exposed to surface scratches.

Budgets for FRP fans are coming more in line with steel coated fans as the Plastic fan industry evolves, develops, and matures. M. K. Plastics Corp. has fans currently operating dating back to 1970 in conditions that we predict steel coated fans would not last even 2 years. Engineers and Owners should also consider that FRP may be more of an economical solution over the long term when considering equipment for mild, medium, and heavy corrosive applications as replacement parts, labor and down-time will be minimized with an FRP selection.

For heavy industrial high static applications, engineers may turn to exotic alloys which can be two, three or four times more expensive then FRP

The brand of resin used is crucial. A simple statement that the product is FRP does not ensure that the application is correct. There are many types of resins on the market. For example, resin used for an FRP canoe would most likely be a general purpose/isopholic resin and that would be suitable for that application. However, an FRP fan exposed to HF, HCl, and H2SO4 constructed of general purpose resin would not be suitable and would most likely fail. Also, you may find in the industry that FRP is applied to thermoplastics such as PVC. Separation can occur and PVC has half the tensile strength as most premium quality FRP resins. How do I avoid these things? When writing a specification, use the language “throughout” when describing the brand of resin you want. Also, some companies may subcontract fan parts outside of North America and quality control may be an issue. If not graphite lined, specifications can specify “fan wheel to be constructed of clear resin only, no pigment allowed”. This allows an onsite check for imperfections in the glass work and also it allows a qualified FRP quality control person to asses the color of the resin and determine if the specified resin was used, if an off color is detected, a very inexpensive full lab analysis can conclude whether or not the specified resin was used.

Many applications such as laboratory or process effl uent are hazardous and must be safely exhausted to ensure the safety of those working in close proximity to the source of the removed fumes. Safety concern is extended to not only those in the immediate area where the fumes are generated, but also to others located in the building, as well as the occupants in surrounding areas. Improperly designed exhaust systems that ineff ectively discharge high concentrations of effl uent can result in reentrainment of the hazardous or noxious exhaust into the building make-up air conditioning system, contaminating the fresh building air. In applications where the exhaust is heavier than air and also corrosive, the use of FRP fans eff ectively displace the exhaust away from the building roofing system and other roof mounted equipment, eliminating costly corrosion caused by the exhausted vapors.

FRP fans are the perfect choice for diesel generator exhaust for hospitals and healthcare facilities. High temperature steel Axjets can safely reduce the diesel exhaust temperature and disperse it high enough away from the building, preventing possible re-entrainment into air intakes:

• For high temperature applications up to 1,200ºF primary diesel exhaust
• Rigid steel fan construction with high temperature corrosion resistant epoxy paint
• Mixing bypass plenum & damper introduces outside ambient air to cool primary diesel exhaust and increase total discharge eff ective stack height to get the air up and away from the building, preventing re-entrainment

For additional information please refer to

Susan Terlitski
Fan / Blower Engineer
Canada Blower Co.

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Susan Terlitski Fan / Blower Engineer Canada Blower Co.

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