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QuikWater, a division of Webco Industries, Inc., located in Sand Springs, Okla., has developed a line of direct contact water heaters that bring NOx emission levels into the single digits. With these industry-leading low levels of NOx emission, QuikWater's Ultra low NOx water heaters were recently precertified by the California Air Resources Board (ARB) and California's South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD). This certifies that the equipment has been exhaustively verified to meet the state's emissions standards.
Recent tests have shown that QuikWater's Ultra-low NOx heaters have been found to consistently hold NOx emissions to 9 ppm or less (corrected to 3 percent O2) without external controls or loss of efficiency. While QuikWater heaters are 99 percent thermal efficient, a typical production environment boiler works at only 50-80 percent efficiency and cannot be easily shutdown and refired. QuikWater heaters only consume energy when hot water is used.
NOx, or nitrogen oxides, are common by-products of fossil fuel combustion. In the presence of sunshine, NOx reacts with other volatile organic gases resulting in smog. Elevated levels of smog are potentially hazardous to everyone and particularly dangerous for individuals with respiratory conditions.
California ARB and South Coast AQMD are regarded as the premier innovators of air quality management techniques and emissions testing protocols. Because their standards are often more stringent than the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), they are considered to be the foremost leader in air pollution control.
Mr. Troy Kuske, vice president and general manager of QuikWater commented, "The pre-certification program benefits customers who purchase Ultra-low NOx QuikWater heaters. Since all of the permit work already has been completed, they have a simpler permit application as well as reduced processing fees. By purchasing precertified units, QuikWater customers help provide a cleaner environment to their community while avoiding any NOx emissions penalties they would incur with lesser grade equipment."
Direct contact technology allows for rapid heat transfer making the units more efficient and economical than conventional means of heating water. The technology works by putting cold water in direct contact with hot air. Incoming cold water falls by gravity through a tower filled with stainless steel rings for maximum heat transfer. While cold water falls downward through the packed tower, hot air from a forced-draft, gas-fueled burner rises upward, transferring 99 percent of the air heat to the water. This efficient use of energy means that QuikWater customers experience up to 50 percent savings on their fuel bill compared to traditional water heating methods.
QuikWater's direct contact water heaters feature a patented dry firing chamber that prevents the incoming water from impinging the burner flame, thereby allowing for complete combustion. Byproducts of incomplete combustion, found in competing direct contact water heaters, negatively effect both water and exhaust quality.
QuikWater heaters are used in a variety of industries and applications including food processing, textile, concrete, laundry, hospitals, wineries, canneries, bottling plants and chemical companies. The applications for the hot water can include domestic water, hand wash stations, showers, kitchens, laundries, egg pasteurization, scalding, equipment wash-down, tank warming, chemical batching, etc. The heaters also maintain superior water quality so that the water can be used as a food ingredient and in sterilization and sanitation processes.