Here at Tomlinson Energy Service, we are passionate about steam boilers – they are a major part of our business. We are experts at boiler maintenance, repair, and installation, and we thrive on being Australia’s foremost packaged boiler and energy system specialists.
Whether you’re a history or engineering buff, a boiler worker, or in the market for a boiler, you might have a few questions about how they work, what their function or role is in our lives, or where to look for professional boiler expertise. Keep reading to find the answers to all your questions!
What is a Steam Boiler?
In essence, a boiler is a piece of machinery characterised by a pressurised vessel that transmits heat to water, in order to produce steam. This sounds simple enough, but a boiler is actually made up of many different parts that function together to produce the steam for its required purpose. You can read on to learn about how steam-powered boilers work, but also make sure to check out the history and various different types of boilers in our comprehensive article all about them!
How do Steam Boilers Work?
So far, we’ve learnt that boilers produce and store steam. But how do they do this? It’s actually quite a simple principle, hence why they have such a long history, dating all the way back in their simplest form to the 17th century! As we’ve outlined, one of the major features of boilers is a vessel that holds water. The vessel is then heated by a fuel, (this is generally Natural Gas ), which then produces hot gasses. These gasses heat the vessel and the water inside which leads to the production of steam.
Steam, as the name suggests, is essential to the function of this piece of machinery, as it is then funnelled through pipes to be used for different purposes.
What Are Steam Boilers Used For?
Maybe you’re familiar with boilers in theory, but are you aware of the functions they perform? Given they have such a long history, it’s no surprise that steam-powered boilers have had, and still have many uses in the world around us. One of the major functions of boilers through the years has been to heat homes, as well as workplaces like offices, hospitals, and retail spaces. In addition, it will be no surprise that the steam-powered train, (also known as a locomotive), is powered by a steam boiler!
Read on to find out some of the more surprising things that are powered by these boilers.
Aquariums: Did you know that aquariums rely on boilers to properly regulate the temperature in their tanks? A large aquarium like the one in Melbourne’s CBD has numerous exhibitions with many tanks containing a variety of different species of sea- life. These animals require differing water temperatures in order to survive, and the system maintaining and regulating these temperatures is often a boiler powered by steam.
Labs and Hospitals: These essential clinical and medical facilities also rely on boilers for different functions. A large use for boilers in these settings is heating, as they are often large facilities that can be quite cold, so they require a large amount of reliable heat to warm them. In addition, steam-powered boilers can be used for sterilisation purposes, which is critical to the safe operation of a hospital or laboratory.
Brewing: Are you a beer fan? It might surprise you to know that one of the most important features of a brewery is a steam powered boiler. As beer is brewed in large vessels, these require efficient and complete sanitisation. What piece of machinery powers the sanitisation process? You guessed it: the steam boiler.
How Can I Be Safe Around Steam Boilers?
Like any piece of machinery, steam-powered boilers pose a safety risk and as such, safety must be the top consideration at all times. There are particular safety protocols that you must be aware of when it comes to these boilers, and it’s important that you understand your Occupational Health and Safety obligations and responsibilities. It is essential that you deal with experts in steam boilers, and that you follow the safety rules and regulations laid out by your state.
Looking for a Steam Boiler Expert?
Here at Tomlinson Energy Service, we maintain, repair, and install steam boilers with reliable and personal service. A proud member of the Environmental Group Limited (EGL), Tomlinson Energy Service is committed to sustainability and is backed by more than 100 years of engineering and service experience.
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