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Filtration and Separation

March 3, 2004

Filtration and separation are some of the most widely used operations in chemical technology. This column kicks off 2004 with visits to Internet Websites that address these vital industry topics.

Richard Holdich's Web site, Filtration and Separation,  aims to "enhance knowledge and understanding of filtration and separation technology throughout the world." Included are explanations, calculations and an online expert system that can be used to help select the best equipment based on settling velocity or filter-cake-specific resistance. Besides covering the details of filtration, sedimentation and free settling, the website also provides simulations and interactive data analysis pages. In addition, U.K.-based courses are available, aiming to provide practical benefits for engineers and technologists.

Josh Halberthal's website-in-progress, Engineering Aspects in Solid Liquid Separation, is set up to "describe separation equipment and the associated process and maintenance problems that face plant engineers." The site includes sections on vacuum filters, pressure filters and conventional thickeners. Sections on high rate and lamella thickeners, and sludge blanket and suction clarifiers are scheduled to be added. Once completed, the site will also cover centrifugation, polishing filtration and dissolved-air flotation.

The filtration, separation portal is a group of search engines based in Germany that seek to be a central source of information for filtration and separation and ancillary products. The site is available in German and English. Searches can be made for product types, companies, markets and applications. Ancillary product searches include filter system components, media material and testing, and control and monitoring equipment. Other searches cover literature, events, services and university research and development. A help center is available to forward special information queries.

The eurofiltec: filtration and separation dictionary is a good resource for definitions of filtration terminology. The webpage also includes tabs to handy tables of volumetric flow rate, and pressure and vacuum conversions. A primer about non-woven fabric filtration media is available from Edward Gregor.

Wire mesh and cloth

A wirecloth reference from Screen Technology Group, Inc., contains technical information about screening, woven wire cloth, woven wire mesh, wire weaving and modular polyurethane screening surfaces. Links include filter cloth weave specifications, mesh size and flow rates, an American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM)/metric size cross-reference, and weaving materials, standards and formulas. A set of flow tables for oil, fuel and air for plain and twilled Dutchweave filter cloth is provided.

Chemie.de, chemistry information service, is an industry-related resource, which is updated daily and offers easy access to hard-to-find information. Its scope extends to all facets of chemical manufacturing, distribution, research and academia. Its sister site, Bionity.com is an information portal for biotechnology and pharmacy. Both sites include search engines. The Chemie.de site includes two links to the chemistry metasearch engine:
1) MetaXChem (articles) with access to worldwide databases of articles from professional societies, refereed journals and commercial publishers and 2) MetaXChe (chemicals) with access to a variety of chemicals databases.

As you surf the Web, it is sometimes convenient to customize your browser. Internet Tips may help you do just that if you are using Internet Explorer or Netscape browsers.There are tips on both bookmarking and adjusting such browser settings as text size, fonts, colors, start page and tool bars. You can check for the latest versions and get the latest information about these two browsers at Microsoft or Netscape. Other browser alternatives include Opera and Mozilla.

Take a glance at Google Web Search Features, which now includes a number of new features. And, if you use Windows XP and haven't kept up with updates, take a look at the Update Rollup 1 for Microsoft Windows XP (KB826939). This consists of previously released critical updates for Windows XP rolled into one convenient package. Installing this item provides you with the same results as installing the individual updates from Microsoft Windows Update.

By Alan E. Hodel, Internet columnist

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