Vacuum pressure impregnation (VPI) is a process used to protect and strengthen porous materials, typically used in electrical equipment, by introducing a protective resin into their internal structure. This process ensures that the material is sealed, preventing moisture or other contaminants from penetrating and causing damage.
The setup for a vacuum pressure impregnation system consists of several components. Firstly, there is the impregnation tank, which is a sealed vessel capable of withstanding vacuum and pressure. The tank is made of boiler steel to withstand high pressure, and its size may vary depending on the size and quantity of materials to be impregnated.
Next, there is a vacuum pump, which creates a vacuum in the impregnation tank. The vacuum eliminates any trapped air or moisture from the porous material, ensuring effective impregnation. The vacuum pump can be an oil-sealed rotary pump or a dry vacuum pump, depending on the specific requirements of the process.
Another important component is the pressure vessel, which is used to apply pressure during the impregnation process. This vessel is also made of Boiler Steel and is connected to the impregnation tank. The pressure vessel has a pressure relief valve to ensure safe operation and prevent over-pressurization.
The impregnation process begins by placing the porous materials, such as windings or cores of electrical equipment, inside the impregnation tank. The tank is then sealed, and the vacuum pump starts to evacuate the air within the tank. The vacuum is maintained for a predetermined duration to remove any trapped air or moisture from the materials.
Once the desired vacuum level is achieved, the tank is filled with a suitable impregnation resin. The resin is usually a two-component system, consisting of a base resin and a hardener. These components are mixed in the desired ratio, ensuring a thorough and uniform impregnation.
After the tank is filled with the resin, the pressure vessel is pressurized using compressed air or nitrogen gas. The pressure is increased gradually to a predetermined level, which allows the resin to penetrate the pores of the material thoroughly. The pressure is maintained for a specified time to ensure complete impregnation.
Finally, the pressure is released, and any excess resin is drained from the tank. The impregnated materials are then removed from the tank and allowed to cure or harden, typically at an elevated temperature. This curing process ensures the resin forms a strong and durable bond with the material, providing enhanced protection and strength.
In summary, vacuum pressure impregnation is a crucial process for protecting and strengthening porous materials used in electrical equipment. The setup and process involve vacuuming air and moisture from the materials and then pressurizing them with a resin to ensure thorough impregnation. This process helps prevent damage caused by moisture, contaminants, and physical stress, prolonging the lifespan and reliability of the impregnated materials