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What is Vacuum Degassing?

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  • Written By: T. L. Childree
  • Edited By: R. Halprin
  • Last Modified Date: 27 November 2016
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Vacuum degassing is the process of removing dissolved gas from a liquid solution by lowering the pressure inside a vessel containing the solution. The reduced pressure inside the vessel causes the gas to become less soluble and separate from the liquefied material. After the vacuum degassing process is complete, the gas is removed from the vessel, and the pressure is returned to normal. This process is typically performed in a specially designed chamber known as a vacuum degasser. Vacuum degassing is often utilized in water treatment, laboratory testing, and soil purification procedures.

Simple vacuum degassing procedures are performed on many kinds of liquefied substances including molten steel. Air and other gasses are typically removed from a liquid material to enhance its purity or solid-state strength. During the pressure-lowering process, air and gasses in the containment vessel are typically drawn out by means of a siphon and dispersed into the atmosphere. This process is also utilized for analyzing a material under controlled conditions. These conditions may include air pressure, temperature, humidity, and altitude as well as electromagnetic and microwave radiation.

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A form of vacuum degassing is utilized in water treatment facilities to greatly reduce the overall gas pressure in a containment vessel. The pressure inside the vessel is usually lowered by means of a pump or blower. The containment vessel for this process is typically constructed of aluminum, fiberglass, or steel. In some cases, reinforced concrete equipped with metal fittings is used. This degassing method is sometimes employed to remove sulfur gasses from water.

This degassing method is frequently used to quickly flush gasses from laboratory test samples. Vacuum degassing also provides a means of priming or purging test samples at low volumes. Vacuum degassers used in laboratory testing facilities operate by sending the solution through a membranous tube that will only allow gasses to pass out of it. A constant vacuum must be maintained during this process and the rate of flow is adjusted for different types of liquid material.

Another type of vacuum degassing is found in the agricultural industry. In this process, a mixture of water and soil is pulled into a containment vessel by means of a vacuum pump. Centrifugal force is brought to bear on the containment vessel while the pump maintains a constant vacuum inside. This force scatters the water and soil mixture into narrow layers for maximum vacuum exposure. During this process, dissolved gasses are separated from the mixture and discharged into the air by a blower. After the material is purified, it is returned to the environment for reuse.

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