There are different types of blasting systems out on the market. You might be wondering what the difference is and what might be suitable for your needs. We give a brief explanation of the different systems and what they are useful for.
SRS system – low pressure wet abrasive blasting
SRS uses a wet abrasive blast system. The presence of water between the media and the substrate being processed creates a lubricating cushion that protects the media and the surface from excess damage. This has the dual advantage of lowering media breakdown and preventing impregnation of foreign materials into the surface.
Wet abrasive blasting uses a mixture of water and particulate abrasive media (usually garnet based). The water becomes a vapor which absorbs the dust particulates, and is considered the most environmentally acceptable form of surface removal. After an SRS removal your surface is extremely clean, there is no embedded secondary contamination from the media or previous cleaning processes, and no dust clinging to the surface. Subsequent coating or bonding operations are always better after wet blasting than dry blasting because of the cleanliness of the surface.
Protective Coating – compliant with AS1627
Australian Standard AS1627 is the compliance rating for surface preparation for the application of Protective Coatings.
The SRS low pressure wet abrasive system does consistently produce surfaces cleaned in compliance with AS1627. This is of importance in ensuring the correct application of Protective Coatings.
Conventional dry sandblasting
Conventional dry sand blasting uses high pressure air and media to remove coatings from surfaces. While the speed of removal is similar to wet abrasive blasting, conventional dry sandblasting, when done improperly, can cause damage to the surface being treated. Dry sandblasted surfaces are also more difficult for bonding sealers to adhere to. Conventional dry sand blasting also uses up to double the amount of media per day, requiring larger cleanup and disposal costs. Dry sand blasting also creates a spark which makes it unsuitable for work sites with a no spark policy, such as Petro-chemical, mining, gas and oil production industries.
It is not considered an environmentally acceptable form of surface removal in an open area due to excessive dust generation. High volume noise generation is also considered an environmental problem.
Correct use of conventional dry sandblasting does produce the surface preparation suitable for the application of Protective Coatings, however due to the high pressure and lack of wet lubrication the correct level of surface preparation is sometimes difficult to achieve consistently.
Similar to conventional sand blasting although not as powerful a surface remover, soda blasting process uses compressed air and bicarbonate of soda-based media (baking soda). Soda blasting is used mainly on brickwork and old paint removal but is not a strong enough system for tougher surfaces like rust.Environmentally, Soda blasting is not considered an environmentally acceptable form of surface removal in an open area due to excessive dust generation, and the toxicity of soda in killing exposed vegetation.
Soda Blasting does not produce the surface preparation suitable for the successful application of Protective Coatings.
High Pressure Water blasting- Hydro-blasting
High pressure water blasting is a process using high pressure water, without abrasives, to remove surfaces. Industrial strength high pressure water blasting can be extremely dangerous, particularly in confined spaces. With High Pressure Water blasting the volume of water used is high requiring longer cleanup.High Pressure Water blasting is not considered an environmentally acceptable form of surface removal due to containment problems with the excessive large volume of water used.
High Pressure Water blasting does not produce the surface preparation suitable for the successful application of Protective Coatings.
Dry Ice blasting
Dry Ice blasting uses large volume air with dry ice (Carbon dioxide). A slower, non-toxic, non-abrasive process leaving little residue, it is a blasting process used in environments where minimal residue is a requirement. Comparative to Abrasive Blasting, Dry Ice blasting is not very effective in removing heavy corrosion or heavy paint.