Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Process Wednesday: sprayballs

When I worked at kilo scale, it was still pretty easy to lift the overhead off the flask and manually clean the reactor. (Note: when you have a narrow opening and you've dropped something in the bottom of your 72 L flask, find the coworker with the narrowest bicep.) When you get to much larger scale though, cleaning gets a little more mechanized. Enter the sprayball, which can be designed to spray solvent in all directions. These are pretty fun little gadgets (see the video above).

I don't know what I was expecting, but I'm glad the chemical engineers thought of this. There go my designs for a 100 liter acetone squeeze bottle with a 2 inch nozzle. 


  1. I bet they still send in a little guy with a broom afterwards...

    1. How do you justly pick the operator for vessel entry? Short straw? Smallest diameter?

    2. We used to use a trained monkey called a Laborist, he just fit in the hole, but was not very proficient with the breathing apparatus!