Gasketed plate-and-frame heat exchangers
Alfa Laval doesn’t do average. Whether it is our multi-purpose Industrial range; the Semi-welded industrial range for refrigeration and exacting processes; the Hygienic range for food, beverage and pharma applications; or the Specialized range for condensation, evaporation and fibrous media – you buy into reduced cost of ownership and increased efficiency and safety.
Gasketed plate heat exchangers for modern requirements
- Highest thermal efficiency and close temperature approach
- Compact units - space saving, easy to service and maintain
- Maximum uptime - less fouling, stress, wear and corrosion
- Flexible - easy to adapt to changed duty requirements
Our gasketed plate heat exchangers - also known as plate and frame heat exchangers - optimise heat transfer between large surfaces of corrugated plates drawing heat from one gas or liquid to the other. The high efficiency and outstanding reliability in a compact design, offers an investment with the most attractive CTO over the product life time. Not to forget the energy saving capabilities and low environmental footprint.
Our wide range of industrial gasketed plate heat exchangers is suitable for all types of industry and multiple applications from heating, cooling and heat recovery to condensation and evaporation. The Industrial line’s versatility allows it to be designed and configured for applications ranging from relatively simple duties with low requirements to very demanding duties with the highest requirements on both performance and documentation.
Alfa Laval AlfaQ™ heat exchangers are used for HVAC applications such as cooling plants, ice-storage systems, data centers, and free cooling systems. The range is certified according to the AHRI Liquid to Liquid Heat Exchangers (LLHE) Certification Program which ensures thermal performance according to manufacturers’ published specifications.
High efficiency and versatile design make the Alfa Laval BaseLine gasketed plate heat exchangers (GPHEs) solid choices for a wide range of hygienic heat transfer applications. This includes the food, dairy, beverage, home and personal care, biotech and pharmaceutical industries, providing owners and operators with peace of mind.
The Alfa Laval semi-welded industrial range is designed for refrigeration and exacting processes. Semi-welded heat exchangers are used when gaskets are not suitable for one of the process media. Also, the semi-welded line can take a higher design pressure compared to fully gasketed plate-and-frame heat exchangers.
Download the manuals for a wide range of Alfa Laval gasketed plate and frame heat exchangers here, including our Industrial Line, Semi-Welded Line, AlfaQ and Hygienic range.
Ten top tips for maintaining Gasketed Plate Heat Exchangers
- Make sure that the operating conditions (temperature and flow rates) comply with the design specifications.
- When starting up, vent the heat exchanger but open and close the valves slowly to avoid pressure surges and water hammer.
- Use upstream filters and strainers to remove particulate fouling and protect the heat exchanger.
- On a daily basis check for any changes in temperature or pressure and check for any signs of external leaks.
- On a regular basis keep the tightening bolts clean and well-lubricated.
- Use Performance Audit to avoid having to open the plate heat exchanger for inspection.
- Use Cleaning-in-Place (CIP) to avoid the need for opening the heat exchanger for cleaning.
- Always keep stand-by units clean and dry. If a heat exchanger is taken out of service, flush with freshwater and drain completely.
- Protect heat exchangers from water splash and rain. Avoid exposure to ultra violet rays and ozone generated from electrical sources.
- Only use genuine spare parts for guaranteed performance, reliability and equipment life. Maintain a stock of essential spare parts and follow the storage instructions.
Local service and support for your plate heat exchanger
You can trust Alfa Laval technicians to repair and recondition your plate heat exchangers – no matter the brand. We’ve serviced equipment for over 90 years in Australia with two of our local service centres outfitted with the equipment and expertise to optimize the performance and life time of your plate heat exchangers.
How it works
How plate heat exchangers work
The concept behind a heat exchanger is relatively simple – heating or cooling one medium by transferring heat between it and another one.
In a gasketed plate heat exchanger, the plates are fitted with elastomeric gaskets which seal the channels and direct the media into alternate channels. The plate pack is assembled between a frame plate and a pressure plate, and compressed by tightening bolts fitted between these plates. The channel plates and the pressure plate are suspended from an upper carrying bar and fixed in position by a lower guiding bar, both of which are fixed to the support column. The design allows easy cleaning and simple capacity modification (by removing or adding plates).
The heat transfer area of a gasketed plate heat exchanger consists of a series of corrugated plates, assembled between a frame and pressure plates to retain pressure. Gaskets act as seals between the plates. Fluids normally run counter-currently through the heat exchanger. This gives the most efficient thermal performance and enables a very close temperature approach, ie the temperature difference between the exiting process medium and the entering service medium.
For heat sensitive or viscous media, co-current flow can be used to let the coldest fluid meet the hottest when entering the heat exchanger. This minimizes the risk of the media overheating or freezing.
Plates are available with various pressing depths, angles of chevron pattern and various corrugation shapes, all carefully designed and selected to achieve optimal performance. Depending on the application, each product range has its own specific plate features.
The distribution area ensures fluids are evenly distributed across the entire heat transfer surface and help avoid stagnant zones that may cause fouling.
While high flow turbulence between plates results in higher heat transfer, the consequence is pressure drop. Our thermal design engineers can help you design and select the model and configuration that is suitable for your application so that it delivers maximum thermal performance with minimum pressure drop.
Special plate types
Double-wall gasketed plate heat exchangers
Designed for use with fluids that cannot be allowed to mix. Prevents leaking fluid coming into contact with the fluid in the other circuit.
Ideal for fluids containing fibers or coarse particles. Designed to eliminate bridging of solids in the entrance area.
Enable aggressive and difficult fluids to be handled, and also extend the pressure range.
Diabon® graphite non-metallic plates
A composite of fused graphite and fluoroplastic provides excellent resistance to corrosive materials.