Radial Fan: A Complete Overview & its Industrial Applications (2022)

Over the years, various types of industrial fans have gained immense torque across industries. Radial fans are one of the important types of industrial fans to have received wide acceptance. These fans are used in factories, mines, and commercial buildings.Widely known as centrifugal fans, the radial fans are also used to move gases, moisture, and dust in the direction of incoming fluid. These fans are also known as paddle wheel fans or radial plate fans, air blower fans, squirrel cage fans, and squirrel fans depending on their construction and operation. Owing to their distinct advantages, today, it is easy to find these fans in different designs. Are you intrigued to know what makes these fans popular? If so, this post answers everything you want to know about these fans.

Radial Fan: A Complete Overview & its Industrial Applications (1)

What is Radial Fan?

A radial fan is a mechanical device that features an impeller, which is powered by an electrical motor. The impeller rotates on its own and provides direction to the air. This air that it lends works upon is usually sucked from the sides of the fan and it is blown through the outlet of the fan.

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What are the components of Radial Fan?

A radial fan mainly comprises the following:

  • Impellers
  • Fan Housing
  • Inlet and Outlet Duct
  • Drive Mechanism
  • Drive Shaft

How does a Radial Fan Work?

In radial fan, the air hits the fan wheel, turns at the right angle, and is accelerated by radial flat blades on the impeller. The accelerated air is discharged radially, thus, the name. The airflow is induced by the centrifugal force, which is produced in a rotating column. These fans may be belt-driven or motor-driven.

Radial Fans and other Centrifugal Fans

There are several types of centrifugal fans, which are distinguished based on their designs. Of these, the forward curve, backward curve, airfoil fans, and radial fans are the most popular ones. Let’s see the other three fans, in brief, to understand how they differ from radial fans.

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Airfoil Fans:

Centrifugal fans are named so owing to their airfoil-profiled blades. Airfoil fans are used in applications where ambient or elevated temperatures are involved such as chemical, power generation, metals, resource recovery industries, and so on. These fans assure high efficiency as well as quiet operations. Dust buildup is one of the drawbacks of this fan. Thus, they are more appropriate for clean air applications.

Forward Curve Fans:

These fans have squirrel cage impellers, which generate the highest airflow volume. Forward curve fans are most commonly used in high-temperature furnace applications, and ventilation applications where there is a low chance of dust loading. This fan requires a large number of blades to drive forward curve wheels. This is why they cannot be used in applications where there is a chance for high dust loading. If dust settles on blades, then the volume of air supply will be impacted.

Backward Curve Fans:

These fans possess the same efficiencies as airfoil fans. They have curved plate blades, which can help avoid the possibility of dust buildup. This specific design makes them suitable for high-pressure applications.

(Video) Radial Fan Wheel Pressure Blower

Design Characteristics of Radial fans

The following design characteristics make them superior to the above-discussed fans.

  • The impeller of this fan possesses a simple design that comprises six to twelve flat blades which extend radially from the center of the fan hub.
  • The blades are narrower, heavier, and deeper than backward inclined and forward curve type centrifugal fans.
  • Simple, yet rugged impeller design helps avoid accumulation of sticky materials or dust on its blades, which makes it suitable for high-pressure, yet, dust-loading applications.
  • Impellers of these fans can be availed in various designs. You will find more variations in impellers than airfoil, forward curve, and backward curve fans. Some popular types include:

    1. Paddle Wheel
    2. Open Wheel (OW)
    3. Backplate Wheel (BW)
    4. Steel Plate

When compared to the airfoil, backward curve, and forward curve centrifugal fans, the radial fans are medium airflow fans. Owing to their high-pressure and non-dust build up designs, these fans are widely used in challenging industrial applications like mining facilities to move air at high pressure.

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Benefits of Using Radial Blade Fans

Radial fans or radial blade fans possess one of the most robust structural designs in the field. This makes them an ideal choice for various industrial applications. The following features of these fans have helped increase their demand in recent years.

  • Fitted with flat radial blades, these fans are suited for heavy-duty and challenging applications.
  • Unlike several other centrifugal fans discussed here, radial fans possess a simple design and self-cleaning characteristics that contribute to easy maintenance. This is particularly beneficial for facilities that are concerned with high maintenance costs.
  • Self-cleaning characteristics not only help in reducing maintenance costs but also help in improving operational efficiency.
  • Rugged construction of these fans makes them an ideal choice for high-temperature, high static pressure, as well as corrosive and abusive environments.
  • Rugged construction combined with durability also makes them a perfect choice for handling air streams containing dust and a large number of particulates.
  • Radial fans are available at more affordable costs than other centrifugal fans, which make them a choice for various industry segments where the budget can be a main concern.

In short, radial blade fans are used in applications where a high degree of reliability and wear resistance is required. A blower is one of the brilliant examples of radial fans or centrifugal fans that are used to dry damp areas of buildings.

What are the Industrial Applications of Radial Fans?

Radial fans are used in various process plants to drive away acidic fumes and corrosive gases. The following pointers will help you understand various industrial applications of radial fans.

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  • These fans are employed in cement plants during various phases of production. For instance, they are used in raw material preparation, material grinding, storage, and blending, as well as the removal of waste gases from filter systems.
  • Radial fans have been one of the integral features of steel plants, where they are used during applications such as de-dusting, sintering, and so on. These fans can withstand dusty conditions, high temperatures, and abusive environments in steel plants.
  • Power station boilers use one of the various types of centrifugal fans or radial fans. These fans assure smooth functioning and consistent operation of boilers and can withstand high temperatures released by these boilers. Radial fans are commonly used by power plants below 500 MW.
  • Heavy duty radial fans or centrifugal fans are used in chemical industries because they can meet the stringent safety requirements in the industry. These fans are usually used to exhaust hazardous gases from the facility.
  • Radial fans and other types of centrifugal fans are used in the textile industry for low-pressure drying.
  • Temperature management is one of the important requirements and concerns in the glass industry. Radial fans are used at various stages of glass preparation. They are used for cooling ovens at the beginning of the process. Also, they are used for driving hot gases within the oven.

Are you looking for a radial blade fan for your industrial facility? You must focus on their quality and operational characteristics before investing. Owing to their high demand, today, it is easy to find several cheap variants of branded radial blade fans, but that is not enough. Thus, you must partner with a trusted brand like Sofasco which not only produces an industry-leading brand of DC radial centrifugal fans but also provides them in custom configurations to meet client requirements. You can get in touch with their team of experts today to discuss your requirements.

FAQs

What is a radial flow fan? ›

A mine fan in which the air enters along the axis parallel to the shaft and is turned through a right angle by the blades and discharged radially. There are three main types with (1) backwardly inclined blades; (2) radial blades; and (3) forward curved blades.

How does a radial fan work? ›

A radial fan is a mechanical device that features an impeller, which is powered by an electrical motor. The impeller rotates on its own and provides direction to the air. This air that it lends works upon is usually sucked from the sides of the fan and it is blown through the outlet of the fan.

Is radial and centrifugal fan same? ›

Also known as “centrifugal fans,” radial fans don't pull air parallel to the axis as axial fans do. Instead, they move air from the center, radially — hence their name.

What is radial blade? ›

Radial blade fans (also known as “paddle wheel” or “steel plate” fans) are usually used within industries to move gasses and other processed materials. Radial blade fans are typically high-pressure systems used to handle combustion air and operate well in harsh environments due to their rugged construction.

Why are radial fans used in industrial workhorses? ›

Radial fans are industrial workhorses because of their high static pressures (upto 1400 mm WC) and ability to handle heavily contaminated airstreams. Because of their simple design, radial fans are well suited for high temperatures and medium blade tip speeds.

What are the three types of fans? ›

There are three main types of fans used for moving air, axial, centrifugal (also called radial) and cross flow (also called tangential).

How do industrial fans work? ›

Industrial fans and blowers are machines whose primary function is to provide and accommodate a large flow of air or gas to various parts of a building or other structures. This is achieved by rotating a number of blades, connected to a hub and shaft, and driven by a motor or turbine.

How many types of fan are there? ›

There are three basic types of axial fans: propeller, tubeaxial, and vaneaxial. Propeller fans are most commonly used for dilution ventilation or cooling.

Which type of fan is most efficient? ›

Ceiling fans are the most efficient fan type – they move the most air per watt. Box fans are the most efficient fan type for personal cooling. In the US, on average, it costs $0.0059 per hour to run a fan.

What is the application of centrifugal fans? ›

Industrial centrifugal fans and blowers accommodate a variety of applications. For example, chemical processing, corrosive gas handling, dust collection, dryers, fume control, process cooling, and process heating.

What is difference between radial and axial? ›

Axial loads occur parallel to the direction of motion, while radial loads occur perpendicular to the direction of motion.

What is radial and axial flow? ›

Axial Flow: The axial flow impeller discharges fluid along the shaft axis. For this reason an axial flow pump is by definition not "centrifugal" in its pumping action. Radial Flow: The radial flow impeller discharges the fluid radially at 90° to the shaft axis.

Which type of fan moves the most air? ›

A powerful floor fan is usually most effective at moving the greatest amount of air in larger spaces, but anyone who needs to save space may want to look into a tower fan with a smaller footprint, such as our best overall, the Better Homes & Gardens 40” 3-Speed Tower.

What is an axial fan used for? ›

In general, an axial-flow fan is suitable for a larger flow rate with a relatively small pressure gain and a centrifugal fan for comparatively smaller flow rate and a large pressure rise. They are used to supply fresh air, to suck air from return air trenches, to suck air from rotary filters, to exhaust air out etc.

What is meant by axial fan? ›

Axial fans are named for the direction of the airflow they create. Blades rotating around an axis draw air in parallel to that axis and force air out in the same direction. Axial fans create airflow with a high flow rate, meaning they create a large volume of airflow.

What is the difference between axial-flow and radial flow? ›

Axial-flow turbines and radial-inflow turbines are the two most common types of dynamic turbines. The flow streamlines through the blade rows of an axial-flow turbine have essentially a constant radius, whereas there is a substantial reduction in radius through the radial-inflow turbine.

What is difference between radial and axial? ›

Axial loads occur parallel to the direction of motion, while radial loads occur perpendicular to the direction of motion.

What is the difference between axial-flow fans and centrifugal fans? ›

An axial fan is one in which the extracted air is forced to move parallel to the shaft about which the blades rotate. Centrifugal fans extract air at right angles to the intake of the fan, and spin the air outwards to the outlet by deflection and centrifugal force.

Which type of fan moves the most air? ›

A powerful floor fan is usually most effective at moving the greatest amount of air in larger spaces, but anyone who needs to save space may want to look into a tower fan with a smaller footprint, such as our best overall, the Better Homes & Gardens 40” 3-Speed Tower.

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