Plastic tanks can be defined as containment vessels that are designed to store different kinds of substances. They are also commonly known as poly tanks, and are used in a variety of industrial applications.
These tanks are available in a wide range of configurations, orientations (horizontal or vertical), colors, shapes, and sizes so they adequately perform their required functions. In terms of size, plastic tanks can range anywhere from 15 gallons to 16,000 gallons.
Plastic is an ideal material to use in the construction of plastic tanks, because plastic is less likely to react to whatever liquid is stored inside the tank. This is especially important if the tanks are to store aggressive chemicals such caustics and acids, which are used for industrial chemical applications.
There are many other industries that benefit from the use of plastic tanks in addition to the industrial chemical field. For example, the agricultural industry use plastic tanks to assist in irrigation and fertilization systems. The petrochemical industry uses them for the transportation and storage of oil and gas.
Finally, they can be used for many industrial applications such as electroplating, recycling, parts washing, and wastewater treatment. Read More…
There are many ways to categorize plastic tanks, but there are three ways that are most common. Plastic tanks can be categorized as follows:
- The material that the tank contains
- The type of material from which the tank is fabricated
- The application and design of the tank
A few types of plastic tanks that are mainly defined by the material they are made to contain are water tanks, plastic fuel tanks, chemical tanks, and plastic oil tanks. Water tanks can be fabricated from numerous materials, the most common of which is polyethylene, or PE. Other materials that can be used to fabricate water tanks are polypropylene (PP), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), and polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF). Water tanks are most commonly made using PE, due to the material’s light and chemical-resistant nature.
Plastic fuel tanks are used for transporting and storing flammable substances, and gauging substance levels in the engine, making it a helpful component in anticipating a harmful situation. Plastic fuel tanks are most commonly fabricated from five different materials: high density polyethylene (HDPE), polypropylene (PP), regrind plastic (recycled polyethylene), and a plastic adhesive or ethyl vinyl alcohol (EVOH). Plastic oil tanks are similar to plastic fuel tanks, but the materials that are more commonly used to fabricate them are fiberglass reinforced plastic (also referred to as glass reinforced plastic), or FRP, and molded polyethylene. Finally, chemical tanks are used to store aggressive chemicals.
Compared to the other two categories, there is a much broader range of tanks that are defined by the second category—the materials of which the tanks are made. The most common types of materials used to fabricate plastic tanks are polyethylene, polypropylene, and FRP. Polypropylene has a few characteristics which make it ideal for plastic tank fabrication—namely its lightweight structure, resistance to heat and moisture, low density, and a melting point of 320F (160C). Despite these key characteristics, polyethylene is a more popular material.
Types of polyethylene that are used include high-density polyethylene (HDPE), low density polyethylene (LDPE), medium density polyethylene (MDPE), linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) and cross-linked polyethylene (XLPE). Polyethylene has several benefits of its own. It can vary in structure, is highly resistant to water, solvents, acids, alkalis, and chemical corrosion. The most common material that FRP tanks are made of is glass-reinforced plastic, or GRP. Being a Food and Drug Administration-approved material, FRP tanks are primarily used in food processing.
The third and final category, the category that classifies tanks by their design and application, is used to define an extensive group of plastic tanks. The most common types of tanks are septic tanks, storage tanks, double-wall tanks, and cone bottom tanks. Depending on the application, double-wall and cone bottom tanks are fabricated with various configurations. For instance, cone bottom tanks are designed to simplify the distribution process from the bottom of the tank, and make the process more efficient. Alternatively, double-wall tanks feature an exterior that is reinforced with an extra layer of plastic, giving the tank its name. This extra layer of plastic provides further safety in storage, transportation, and processing of harmful materials.
Septic and storage tanks are used for specific purposes, but these purposes are utilized by many industries to some degree. For example, storage is an application that can be found in almost every industry, making storage a highly diverse application. In turn, storage tanks can be found in numerous configurations. The purpose of septic tanks is much more specialized, as they are designed to store substances used in the process of sewage treatment. The two basic parts of a septic tank are a septic tank and a drain field, and together they make an on-site sewage treatment system.