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Steam Powered Rotary Cooker

Hello Dan,

I have a job that we are practically designing from scratch. We have some questions that I hope you can answer. Any help is appreciated.

I have a customer that has a commercial steam powered rotary cooker. It needs to be supplied with 400 lbs/hr of steam at a pressure of 10 - 12 PSI. The cooker has already been installed at ground level.  (Digging a pit is not an option here.) We would have to run a riser up about 20 feet to the ceiling, across about 100 feet and DOWN 20 feet to the cooker. After the cooker would be a trap, condensate tank and check valve. The owner does not want to dig up his floor or run pipe along his floor so he wants us to run the return lines next to the supply main. So we would have to bring the return lines UP 20 feet to the ceiling, across 100 feet and back down to the boiler return tapping.

Using the charts supplied in the Art of Steam Heating book, I can figure out the pressure drop. That's where the questions begin:

1) Can I supply steam to a unit that is below the normal water line?

2) I know I can run steam vertically and horizontally but can I pipe so that the steam runs downward?

3) Can I bring the return lines up to the ceiling? and would the condensate tank be able to pump the condensate up to the ceiling and back to the boiler?

4) Where should I install the main vent? I was thinking directly after the cooker so that the steam rushes to the cooker.

5) Would we need a F & T trap or regular steam trap.

6) Is it okay to operate a 15 lb maximum low pressure boiler with an operating pressure control set at Cut-In 9 lbs and Cut-Out 11 lbs.

7) What boiler should I select? How do you convert pounds per hour into BTU?

8) How much should we pitch the steam main measured in inch per feet?

I attached a picture of the unit.

Again, any help is greatly appreciated.


NY Heating


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