Defoamers are chemical additives which reduce or stop the formation of foam in industrial liquids. The most visible form of foam is the one moving above the stock surface. This foam probably causes problems with the level of the liquid resulting in overflow. This leads to oil being spread around the machinery raising the safety concern. Moreover, this can hamper the working speed and efficiency of the machinery. The real problem may arise if the foam enters the structure. As we all know that, air is a bad lubricant, foam can cause metal to metal friction.

Mechanical factors causing foam- The mechanical factors which may create foam or capture air in the medium are; pumps with leaked seals or high pressure, defective designs of tanks, inlets and outlets of pumps, etc. The dissolved air works as a part of liquid and may release from it in form of bubbles. These bubbles get collected on the surface of the liquid. Those having enough buoyancy to lift at the top of the liquid are called foam.

Problems caused by foam in process and coolant liquid- Coolant and process liquids have dissolved foam or air in it. This can cause several problems. They are as follows:

  • Decrease in capacity of storage tanks and pumps.

  • Cavitation i.e. lessened efficiency of pump.

  • Growing bacteria

  • Floatation of filth

  • Drainage problems

  • Liquid solutions being less effective

  • Wastage of time on cleaning tanks every now and then

  • Increased expenses on replacements of liquids

  • Loss caused due to rejection of entire substance due to deficiencies.

As mentioned earlier, all these problems raised due to foam formation can be resolved by using defoamer. So, let’s have a look at the role or applications of defoamers in different materials.

  • Detergent- The detergent used in dishwashers needs be low foaming; otherwise the working of the dishwasher gets affected. To resolve this type of problems, defoamer is added to certain detergents in order to reduce the foam they create, says a defoamer exporter.

  • Industrial usage- Defoamers are used in many industries in their processes and products. The main industries making use of defoamers are, wood pulp, food processing, wastewater treatment plants, paper manufacturing, paint manufacturing, etc.

  • Medical and pharma- Defoamers are very useful in relieving health problems like bloating. A well-known example is of medicinal product named Simethicone. It is an active component of medicines like Gas-X which used to cure bloating.

  • Food items- Defoamers or anti-foaming agents are used as ingredients in food items with a motive of preventing overflow and foaminess while cooking or serving the food. The most common example given by a Defoamer exporter is of chicken nuggets, which contain a category of silicone called as polydimethylsiloxane. You might have seen foam being formed in cooking oil while deep frying anything. To prevent this, anti-foaming agent named silicone oil is added to cooking oils.

So, now when you are familiar to the hazards caused by foam in various industries and our daily life, it is imperative to act wisely. Defoamers are really very helpful in avoiding certain troubles caused due to foaming. Make sure about the use of them in products and processes used at your factory or home. Be safe!

Author's Bio: 

Shah Patil & Company is one of the leading Defoamer maunfacturers in Mumbai, Maharashtra which exports various products like Phosphoric Acid Defoamers, Wetting Agents, Dispersing Agents, Thickener, Anti-Setting Agent and many other products at best price.