At Tank Fab, we build custom designed autoclave systems for your facility needs, as well as service and repair existing ones.  

More than that, we provide you with everything you need to make your autoclave run, including piping, valves and pumps.  

We can even custom design automation!  

But what, exactly, does this all mean?

What is an Autoclave?

Essentially, an autoclave is nothing more than a hollow tube with a door on one end.  

The term “autoclave” actually has a few different definitions and is often used interchangeably with the term “sterilizer,” “vulcanizer,” or “retort.”  

No matter the use, the process boils down to putting items inside the hollow vessel, subjecting them to high amounts of pressure and/or vacuum, resulting in the item being “treated.”

How it Works

We’ve established the basics of how an autoclave works.

Let’s dig a little deeper.

Depending on the application, steam or chemicals may be involved.  

In order for the pressure to rise, air must be removed from the autoclave, which is done by pulling a vacuum within the autoclave.

In some instances, heat is also required to treat the items inside the autoclave.  

Temperatures are raised with steam, which is introduced to the autoclave after the air is removed and rises as the pressure rises until the desired temperature is reached.  

The pressure is maintained inside the autoclave for a predetermined amount of time to achieve the desired results.  When the process is completed, the pressure is relieved and the items are finished.

Types of Autoclaves

There are numerous types of autoclaves and autoclave systems.  

Here are the most common.

While Tank Fab focuses on autoclaves for use in the preservation of wood, the curing of rubber, and the forming of aerated concrete, experience over the years has taught us that with small changes in the design, we can make autoclave system for just about any industry – including yours.

Automating Your Autoclaves

Tank Fab can also automate your autoclave systems too.  

We customize your automation system to meet your specific needs, which helps you to run your autoclaves – and your whole facility – as efficiently as possible.  Our system, the E.A.S.Y Treat system, is a PLC/PC based system that runs on one of the leading industrial software platforms.

Benefits of automated autoclave systems

There are several important advantages of automation.

  • Increased productivity  
  • Greater consistency and quality  
  • Added safety   
  • Control over your systems from one central location, allowing you to monitor and make changes where needed  

Tank Fab’s experience

We have completed several automation systems, including one for a monomer production facility, Coatings and Adhesives in Leland, NC.

We’ve also made automation systems for wood treatment facilities that provide lumber for major retailers like Lowe’s and Home Depot, and rubber hose facilities including Eaton Corporation.

Whether you need an autoclave to pressure treat your product, require repairs to an existing autoclave, or want to automate the autoclaves in your facility, Tank Fab is your one-stop shop!  

Give us a call today to learn more!

Editor’s note: This post was originally published on 4/18/17 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehension.

Topics: Autoclave

Author: Jeff Lippincott