Multicoat Northeast Ltd company logo image-chnage Dry-Ice

The safe way to clean or remove surface deposits without any media debris, solvent action or damage to the surrounding environment.

For dry ice blasting in Middlesbrough, Stockton-on-Tees or the surrounding areas that produces extra shiny results, call us on

01642 211 828

This photograph shows 3mm dry ice pellets releasing their cleaning power while rapidly subliming on the top of a blast unit.

 

Dry ice pellets, which are pure solid carbon dioxide, are made by decompressing liquid C02 to create C02 snow. The snow is then compacted and extruded through a die plate to form solid CO2 pellets.

 

Dry ice is unstable above minus 78.6 °C, but instead of melting into CO2 liquid when it warms up, it sublimes directly into C02 gas. It is this sublimation process that creates the cleaning effect when dry ice is used as a blast medium.

 

During blasting the pellets are accelerated to speeds between 200 and 300 m/s with compressed air. They break up as they travel through the blaster and arrive at the work surface as fast moving pinhead sized particles. The particles embed themselves in the pores of any surface deposits and very quickly sublime into a much larger volume of CO2 gas. This rapid generation of gas within an enclosed space breaks up the surface deposit, releases its bond with the substrate and blows it away. The CO2 then diffuses into the atmosphere leaving no debris other than the material removed, which is usually found as a fine dust.

Our Dry Ice blasters always produce excellent results

Dry ice blasting in Middlesbrough, Stockton-on-Tees & the UK

If the substrate is strong enough to resist the effect of the gas generation it will not be damaged or abraded and, because CO2 is chemically inert, there will be no chemical reactions to alter the substrate’s surface finish.

 

Also, as sublimation takes place on first impact, there is no secondary impact to cause undesirable effects to the surrounding area or localised equipment, all of which makes the process safe and ideal for use in an Open environment, and as an in-situ tool cleaner.

What can be cleaned or removed with Dry Ice?

If the substrate is porous so that gas generation can also occur within its pores the cleaning may not be abrasion free. With porous substrates the deciding factor is the strength of the material. A porous sintered metal will withstand the gas generation, but a friable material like soft wood or plaster will not. Also, composite materials will show differing effects. For example the talc will be leached out of the surface of talc filled plastic leaving the surface roughened, whilst the same plastic without the talc, will clean without damage.

 

If the solid dry ice particles find it difficult to penetrate the layer that should be removed, cleaning will be very slow or impossible. Typical materials that are hard to penetrate are oven cured paints or enamels and elastic materials commonly used as sealants. Dry ice cleaning is slower than an abrasive process on many materials and cannot create any specific surface finish standard, e.g. rust will be removed, but the underlying steel surface will remain pitted.

What cannot be cleaned or removed with Dry Ice?

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Aircraft wing paint booths

Aircraft components

Automotive welding robots and jigs Automotive interior cladding formers

Before NDT

Boiler membrane walls

Braking systems on cars, planes and trains Can lacquer lines and printers

Chemical plant

Chocolate moulds and process machinery Cigarette manufacturing machinery

Classic car components

Curing ovens

Dirt and grease from machinery

Electric train conductors and control gear Film casting bands and equipment

Food contact surfaces

Food processing machinery

Generating equipment

Heat exchangers and radiators

Hot and cold core boxes

Injection moulding tools

Laminate flooring machinery

Latex formers

High performance racing engines

Metallising ovens

Packaging machinery

Pattern boxes

Petrochemical heater tubes

Plastic sheet and film extrusion dies

Plastic casting tools

Rotational moulding tools

Rubber moulding tools

Sluice gate chains

Turbine blades

Alumina based die coating removal at 300°C

Cleaning a V10 Le Mans racing engine

Ageing deposits from brickwork and hardwood

Alumina based die coatings from LP casting dies

Antifouling coatings from boat hulls

Anti-wetting films prior to brazing or welding

Baking residues from baking bands

Coatings from high value complex parts

Carbon (coke) from racing engines

Condensates from plastic moulding tools

Epoxy resins from mixing equipment

Film deposits from optical components

Flash from foiled mobile phone lenses

Flavouring deposits from food conveyors

Fluxes or coatings applied incorrectly

Gasket residues from engine heads

Glue residues from wood presses

Graphite based die coating from HP casting dies

Greasy films prior to application of adhesives

Ink from printing and packaging processes

Masking media

Paint from carbon fibre parts

Plaster from complex castings

Production spillages or leftovers from machinery

Protective coatings

Radioactive deposits

Smoke damage

Cleaning:

Removing:

Refurbishing:

Aircraft Classic cars

Cutting and forming machinery

Printing and envelope machinery

Process machinery

Road transport vehicles

Trains

Military equipment