REPAINTING of French National Railways’ refurbished TGV Sud-Est trainsets has been speeded up by the development of a new paint drying tunnel using infrared radiation.
The Sunkiss Thermoreactor is a catalytic radiant panel which produces infrared radiation and convection currents through the catalytic combustion of natural gas or propane. Propagation of magnetic waves in the infrared spectrum transfers kinetic energy into organic coatings such as paint, glue or ink.
Together with the hot air currents convecting from the surface of the Thermoreactor, the radiant energy offers a three to eight-fold reduction in drying times and polymerisation of two-pack paint finishes. The tunnel can also be used for curing varnishes and glued joints.
Start-up time for the drying tunnel is reduced to around 10 min, and energy consumption is cut by 50% because of the more efficient transfer. Any solvents given off during the drying are oxidised, rather than burned, reducing pollutants.
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