Garry Wakeling, Industrial Sealing Manager at ERIKS Sealing & Polymer, comments: “A gasket can play a key role in reducing emissions by minimising leakage and providing resistance against particular temperatures and chemicals, all of which can endanger employees and impact the environment.”
The warning comes as a new generation of gaskets is introduced to the UK market which are being used in a range of applications, including heat exchangers and fuel refineries, where fugitive emissions are both an environmental and a safety concern.
Wakeling continues: “We continue to develop products specifically in areas such as profile design and the use of high and low density graphite which will conform to surface irregularities. For example, our Elastagraph gasket has a corrugated profile, featuring ‘humps’ and ‘valleys’ to create a bellows effect that helps to counteract the effects of movement and misalignment. It also offers reduced porosity to minimise leakage, a high level of resistance against the majority of chemicals, and non-oxidising capabilities, even at extremely high temperatures.”
Wakeling also stresses the importance of best practice in order to harness the full potential of any gasket. He says: “Beyond choosing the right gasket for your application, you must follow correct bolting and lubrication procedures to ensure a gasket is fixed in position and performs as expected. A gasket isn’t a ‘fit and forget’ solution, and industry should be prepared to undertake continual flange inspection and maintenance. To this end, full product and process training for all relevant employees is essential.”