A new approach involving a multi transducer ultrasonic system for cleaning turbine engines' oil filters under practical conditions

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Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to provide a green technology that can clean turbine engine oil filters effectively in ships using ultrasound, with ultrasonic devices having a frequency of 25 kHz and different powers of 300 W and 600 W, respectively. The effects of temperature, ultrasonic cleaning times, pressure losses through the oil filter, solvent washing, and ultrasonic power devices were investigated. In addition, the cleaning efficiency of three modes (hand washing, preliminary washing and ultrasonic washing) were compared to assess their relative effectiveness. Experimental results revealed that the necessary ultrasonic time varied significantly depending on which solvent was used for washing. For instance, the optimum ultrasonic cleaning time was 50–60 min when the oil filter was cleaned in a solvent of kerosene oil (KO) and over 80 min when in a solvent of diesel oil (DO) using the same ultrasonic generator device (25 kHz, 600 W) and experimental conditions. Furthermore, microscopic examination did not reveal any damage or breakdown on or within the structure of the filter after ultrasonic cleaning, even in the filter's surfaces at a constantly low frequency of 25 kHz and power specific capacity (100 W/gal). Overall, it may be concluded that ultrasound-assisted oil filter washing is effective, requiring a significantly shorter time than manual washing. This ultrasonic method also shows promise as a green technology for washing oil filters in turbine engines in general and Vietnamese navy ships in particular, because of its high cleaning efficiency, operational simplicity and savings.

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