Energy Savings and Improved Uniformity with the Airtorch®  and MightySteam® – Deep Decarbonization.

Promoting Deep Decarbonization – Deep decarbonization completely eliminates any process’s CO2 and equivalent greenhouse gas emissions.

Project Costing Principles are discussed on this page. Promoting deep decarbonization through electrification requires understanding the competitive advantage of electrification. This page provides general guidelines for project costing when changing from fossil fuel heating to electric. It discusses the costs and dangers of carbon capture and the social costs incurred when using fossil fuels.

Organizations are now using the social cost of carbon (discussed below) to help evaluate investment decisions and guide long-term planning that considers the full extent of how their operations impact society and the environment. The safest and most efficient route is electrification for deep decarbonization. Today the fastest route to deep decarbonization is electrifying industrial heating with the most efficient electrical systems. Please contact MHI for project cost recovery periods if you have requested a quotation.

High-efficiency electric industrial heating, which includes steam technologies, is now available for the electrification of industrial heating systems with zero CO2, NOx, and SO2 emissions. Deep decarbonization is a competitive advantage. Electric systems offer many advantages in control and improved productivity, whether in industrial furnaces, comfort heating, fuels, cement, hydrogen heating, food, milk, sterilization, beverages, or drying and roasting.

Rapid Steam Generator

Rapid Steam generation in the industrial heating sector with considerably improved efficiencies (decarbonization) can quickly reduce CO2 and methane emissions to Zero. Compare the prices of the lowest price fossil fuels in various countries as of 2022 with electric power (source). The project payback is quick.

Global temperature rise and CO2 levels are correlated.

The atmospheric CO2 levels in 2021 were ~400 ppm+, and the temperature rise was almost ~ 1.1C above a safe baseline. Global energy-use-related CO2 emissions grew by ~0.9%, or ~321 million tons, reaching a new high of more than 36.8 billion tons in 2022. The year 2022 was eventful when the temperatures, extreme climate events, and the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere increased.

If we continue to use fossil fuels, the predictions are for higher CO2 and other GHGs, leading to higher temperatures and, consequently, a higher number of extreme and intense climate events in the coming decade.

How much CO2 emission is prevented by electrification? How to get to Zero CO2 and Zero NOx,  The total CO2 emissions from fossil fuels depend on the fuel (see column on the right) and other factors determining the combustion quality. The electrification of industrial heating can entirely reduce these.

1 KWh (3,600,000 Joules) use of electric energy for industrial heating can save at least ~0.18 -0.5 kg of CO2 equivalence from being emitted on average (please see the emissions table for specific fuels) on the right. Other GHGs emitted during fossil fuel combustion are even more potent than CO2. These are clubbed into CO2 equivalence (note the NOx emitted is approximately equivalent to 298 times the amount of CO2 – methane emission is 25 times equivalent to CO2). Sometimes fossil fuel emissions happen even before combustion, e.g., during transmission,

Both CO2 levels and global temperatures are rising.

Visualization of how global warming increases the probability of extreme events? Extreme heat-related events increase by shifting and flattening the curve.

By placing a value on carbon emissions (listed below), decision-makers can use this value to expand upon traditional financial decision-making tools, thus creating proper metrics for measuring their actions. Today, a loss value of $300 per ton of CO2 equivalence emission is not unreasonable to add to project costs. As a rough rule, a 1 MW energy production with electricity instead of fossil fuels could save anywhere from 0.2 – 0.5 tons of CO2 equivalence emission per hour. The best option for decarbonization is to quickly change to electrical, industrial heating systems with zero CO2, NOx, and SO2 emissions. Megawatt electrical systems are available today with very attractive payback prices when considering energy at $0.06 per kWh, including the social cost of emissions.

The new equipment often pays back quickly when considering the CO2 emission cost. Several organizations are now using the social cost of several hundred dollars per ton of CO2 emitted to help evaluate investment decisions.

  • The efficiency of thermal transfer. What is the actual energy conversion efficiency to theoretical efficiency? The MHI Airtorch® systems offer more than 95% efficiency, depending on the model.
  • Pressure drop. Some large MHI models allow a pressure drop at 1000C of as low as 0.1 psi (3wc).
  • Control systems. Good controls offer an excellent turn-down ratio with intelligent cascade electronics. MHI uses the best SCRs and electronics that are industry standards.
  • Materials and Design. What is the best temperature rating of the Airtorch?®. Depending on the model, MHI Airtorch® systems offer 1200°C exit temperatures. A higher temperature-rated Airtorch® will perform better and last longer even at a lower temperature.
  • Productivity vs. Temperature (in pdf format)Processing Productivity vs Temperature
  • Improvement of over 30% in energy efficiency compared to …..(click here for case studies)
  • Request Information on an Electric Airtorc

How much CO2 is emitted per kWh during industrial heating? A reasonable range is 0.18 – 0.5 kg of equivalent CO2 emission per kWh when using fossil fuels for industrial heating. A typical social cost of this emission is estimated to be in the hundreds of dollars per ton of CO2. The cost is estimated from known asset losses attributable to climate change.

The costs of fossil fuel burning are increasing rapidly. Can one capture CO2 from the air and store it? As of today, direct carbon costs are prohibitively high. The range of costs varies between $250 and $600/ton CO2, depending on the chosen technology. Some solids and liquids can absorb CO2. Photosynthesis removes carbon dioxide naturally. Amines, algae, zeolites, salt solutions, and hydroxides can capture CO2. Activated carbon can also absorb CO2. The captured carbon dioxide can be used to make valuable compounds, but the CO2 may be given off again when used! Various reports detail the difficulties and dangers of CO2 capture.

If we add the carbon capture cost of making CO2 to the dangers of CO2 capture and the asset reduction cost of emitting CO2, the cost of emitting CO2 is extremely high.

Read more about the social cost of making CO2.

Economic: Electric methods are generally more efficient than combustion heating. Improving energy efficiency can lower utility bills, create healthy jobs, help stabilize electricity price volatility, and improve the climate with lower CO2 emissions. Several attractive loans are available for curtailing anthropogenic carbon emissions with new equipment, i.e., reducing the emissions of various forms of carbon – the most concerning being carbon dioxide – associated with human activities. These activities include burning fossil fuels, deforestation, land use changes, livestock, fertilization, etc., resulting in a net increase in emissions. The payback period for new equipment for decarbonization is attractively small when one includes the high social cost of CO2 emissions. Contact MHI for your system analysis (free).

Summary of Energy Cost Factoring CO2 emissions:  When one includes the social cost of CO2 production, the price of one KWh of electric or combustion energy starts converging. The CO2 emissions per million kilojoules of energy used range from 50.4 Kg for natural gas to 68.8 Kg for jet fuels. The social cost of emitting industrially produced  CO2 is estimated at $51-$414/ton, rising rapidly with time. Adding climate cost to combustion heating increases the price of all fossil fuels on average by at least ~$300 or more per ton of CO₂ with a high of $414+/ton  (i.e., corresponding 2 to 4 US cents per kWh that could be added to the average price of toxic fossil fuel energy costs). Increased energy efficiency from electrification can lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and other pollutants and decrease water usage.

Productivity:  MHI systems adjust to optimize the energy required by drawing only the necessary Power and accelerating productivity with the optimal highest Temperature. A higher temperature significantly adds to the production rate. More Power equates to a higher energy delivery per unit of time. As systems like furnaces have fixed heat loss, the higher Power will mean that you deliver heat faster to reach the required Temperature. An underpowered system will struggle to get to the Temperature.

Did you know: converting from a 16MW combustion heater to an Electric Airtorch could save over 30% energy and several millions of dollars in climate-reduced asset and insurance costs? Typically a 30% improved efficiency is noted in electric devices over combustion (fossil-fuel) heaters.   For example, a 14.2 MW combustion gas heater could be replaced with an 11  MW electric Airtorch. A savings of ~$48,000 daily (assuming 1 KWh ~10 US cents).

 Is it clean to burn natural gas? Not really. The emissions from natural gas-fired boilers and furnaces could include nitrogen oxides (NOx), carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), trace amounts of sulfur dioxide (SO2), and particulate matter (PM).

MHI Airtorch® models are designed for low thermal energy loss. Simultaneously they offer very low pressure-energy loss. MHI Airtorch® models offer high-temperature input, which benefits duct heaters and ovens that quickly replace natural gas heating. This is the best method for decarbonization.

For the best energy saving, the following tips could be helpful depending on the application:

  • Energy-saving Tips

    1. If lesser energy can be used for the same objective, it will substantially reduce CO2 emissions. Modern light generators (bulbs) produce the same visible light intensity with much less energy. So does an Airtorch (process air and gas generator)  or a modern decarbonized steam generator.
    2. Improved practices. There is no need to pressurize compressors and bleed them every day. Pressurization leads to substantial energy demand. If using high-volume airflows, ensure that the pressure drop is the least.
    3. An electric Airtorch device is almost always much more efficient than a fossil-fired heat exchanger. Opt for modern electric machines; they generally use less energy for the same objective than a machine with a combustion source.   For example, we have shown that an 11MW electric Airtorch® for the same heating objective can replace a 16MW gas heater. Or use an electric instant steam generator instead of a conventional boiler. Or implement methods to conserve the quality of energy. 
    4. Did you know that saving 5MW of Power in a device for the same objective saves well over US$3.5 Million for the year in the cost of electric energy?
    5. There are additional benefits with the MHI Airtorch. The pressure drops for electric Airtorch devices are lower than traditional heat exchanger devices.   For a 2000 SCFM flow, saving ~5 psi in pressure drop equals about 30 KW in power savings. This is almost a savings of $25,000 per year, assuming a price per kWh of 10US cents.   
    6. Upgrade equipment. Replace old furnaces and devices with the most modern emissivity heaters, crisp controls, safe insulation, and high-productivity ergonomics. Use higher temperatures for processing for the same objective to glean profits from higher productivity. Many thermal processes accelerate exponentially with Temperature.
    7. Productivity vs. Temperature (in pdf format)
    8. Clean smartly  Cleaning chemicals pack a lot of energy, but it comes from somewhere. Please keep them clean  Without adding new chemicals or contaminants. Save energy with high-temperature steam.
    9. The temperature uniformity with electric air heating is considered substantially superior to large dies’ flame heating.

      Heating Rate ProfileCompare Airtorch Heating to Flame

      Aluminum Melting Overview with MHI products

      Aluminum Melting Overview

      18 Bar

      18 Bar

    10. High Watt Airtorch

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Temperature LoPowerower (1-12 kW) HPowerower (36-400 kW)
600-1000°C LTA, VTA, MVTA(SH) MTA925 MVTA-900-(THN/DNA) Models, SH
900-1000°C (Custom), DNA MVTA-1000-(THN/DNA) Models, SH
1000-1200°C DNA, DPF, SH (CustomHigh-Pressure
re Enclosures Up to 1200°C

Continuous Overn with Airtorch

ContinuouOvenrn with Airtorch

Click here to view Typical Applications.

What’s New:: See Testimonials:: Calculate Power:: Conversion Calculator
Airtorch Flow vs. Temperature Charts:: Request a quote for Airtorch®

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Airtorch® System Introduction

Please use5-step step process for selection. First, choose the maximum rated exit temperature of the Airtorch®.  If below 900 °C, please select TA models, e.g., VTA and Mls. If above 925°C, please choose the MVTA or DPF model – please contact MHI.

Sometimes, the lowest power users work through several cycles in a recuperator mode. The SH models can accept inlet gas temperatures up to 800°C. Please get in touch with MHI for details.

The Airtorch® convective system uses a particular class of elements to heat the ambient air and direct that heated air towards a surface or into a chamber. Depending on the model, the Airtorch® system can achieve temperatures ranging from room temperature to 1100-1200°C (~2200°F) with infinitely variable volume flow rates and no harmful emissions, providing a beneficial new method of heating with modern controls.

MHI Airtorch® applications are in drying electrical varnish, weld preheating, die heating, plastic softening before forming, drying motor parts, removing moisture, expansion fitting, combustion, simulation preheating and heating molds, curing, prosthetics, heat shrinking, compression molding, flock setting, curing catalysts drying slurries, freeze-drying, improving ink print finish, finishing mirror drying, latex, heating adhesives, and general heating of chambers as shown below. Add to chambers for powder and liquid finishing. Add to continuous furnaces for wood conditioning, metal finishing, and forming. A small but finite temperature drop is experienced when directing Airtorch® flow with insulated piping because of the high velocity.

  • For impingement types of applications, the DPFs offer very superior value.
  • A good rule of thumb for augmenting uniformity in an existing furnace with an Airtorch® add-on is choosing an Airtorch® power with at least 30% of the original. This may not be enough if a temperature increase is also sought.
  • When planning to extend the Airtorch® exit piping, please note that well-insulated pipes will drop the temperature very little as the exit velocity is m/s. A helpful but rough rule of thumb may be about 50°C-100°C/m drop for good internal pipe insulation. Good pipe insulation is specific to whether the pipe is internally or externally insulated. The MHI industry standard is about a 1-2″ thick insulation. Please get in touch with MHI when required.
  • Introduction to Airtorch® | AirtorchIn Line® Applications | CalculatPowerower .vs Flow Rate | Easy Design Criterion

  • With its variable volume flow rate and power adjustability, the Airtorch™ can be set up to perform at any condition of flow temperature under the curve. Such features offer the user maximum flexibility when applying the Airtorch™ technology to heating applications.

    Easy to use selection and design page.

    Continuous Ovens.

The use of Airtorch® products may be classified into three major categories schematically drawn below.

Direct Impingement

Direct Impingement

Gas Preheating

Gas Preheating

Retrofit for Enhancement

Retrofit for Enhancement


Use the Airtorch® with
existing furnace technology
infra-red, gas, radiant
to improve uniformity and
furnace efficiency.


Example of Use to Augment an Existing Furnace Installation for Improved Power and Uniformity.

An example of a 4kW Airtorch® augmentation application is schematically shown below. In this application, many complex-shaped rods are to be heated uniformly. The heat-treater reported that the rods were not uniformly heated in his existing radiant heat furnace. MHI proposed an add-on to his existing furnace with a system of Airtorch products, significantly impacting the uniformity – reducing the total energy consumed. More Green Installation and more Profits to the user. Improve oven performances and eliminate harmful emissions.

A uniform surface heating retrofit example and continuous oven examples are illustrated below.

As a rule of thumb, an Airtorch power of ~0.3 the furnace power is employed when designing for better uniformity.

The Airtorch does not use any fossil fuel nor emit any greenhouse gas. Using fossil energy like fuel oil, gasoline, or natural gas for heating creates considerable CO2 and other greenhouse gases (Free calculator). Every ton of CO2 emission causes about the same amount of global warming, no matter when and where the CO2 is emitted.

Kilograms of CO2 emitted per Million Kilojoules from typical fossil fuels. The heat value (MJ/kg) is also shown.
Natural Gas (the main component is methane). Heat value 42-55 MJ/kg. 50.4 kg of CO2 per Million Kilojoules
Jet Fuel  Heat value 50-55 MJ/kg. 68.8 kg of CO2 per Million Kilojoules
Bituminous (coal)  Heat Value ~ 18 MJ/kg. 88.8 kg of CO2 per Million Kilojoules
Diesel and Home Heating Fuel (Distillate Fuel Oil)  Heat Value 42-46 MJ/kg. 59.9 kg of CO2 per Million Kilojoules
Gasoline and Ethanol Blends. Heat value 44-46 MJ/kg. 64.1 kg of CO2 per Million Kilojoules

The Gamut of Airtorch Products

Airtorch 1000C

heat treating uniformity

binder burn off

A fuel’s “Heat value” is the heat released during combustion. Also referred to as energy or calorific value, the heat value measures a fuel’s energy density and is expressed in energy (Megajoules or Gigajoules) per (kilograms, kg). If the fuel contains carbon, there is CO2 emission, as shown in the table above.

 Fuel Heat value
Hydrogen (H2) 120-142 MJ/kg
Methane (CH4) 50-55 MJ/kg
Methanol (CH3OH) 22.7 MJ/kg
Propane (C3H8) 46 MJ/kg
Dimethyl ether – DME (CH3OCH3) 29 MJ/kg
Petrol/gasoline 44-46 MJ/kg
Diesel fuel 42-46 MJ/kg
Crude oil 42-47 MJ/kg
Liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) 46-51 MJ/kg
Natural gas 42-55 MJ/kg
Hard black coal (IEA definition) >~23.9 MJ/kg
  Hard black coal (Canada) ~ 25 MJ/kg
Sub-bituminous coal (IEA definition) 17.4-23.9 MJ/kg
  Sub-bituminous coal (Canada) ~ 18 MJ/kg
Lignite/brown coal (IEA definition) <17.4 MJ/kg
  Lignite/brown coal (Australia) c. 10 MJ/kg
Firewood (dry) 16 MJ/kg
Natural Uranium in LWR

with U & Pu recycle

650 GJ/kg
Natural Uranium, in FNR 28,000 GJ/kg
Uranium enriched to 3.5% in LWR 3900 GJ/kg

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A uniform surface heating retrofit example and continuous oven examples are illustrated below.

As a rule of thumb, an Airtorch power of ~0.3 the furnace power is employed when designing for better uniformity.

MHI Airtorch® Supplemental Heating Proposal
Scope: Supplement existing electrodes by applying Airtorch convective heating to increase performance and life
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Solution: By supplementing the existing electrodes with the Airtorch® and blankets, the watt density is increased on the mold, thus reducing the workload of the existing electrodes.

1 Heating: Create a convective cavity around the assembly using two 4kW Airtorch® units. Fixture Airtorch units behind mold and electrodes at angles to create air movement. This should improve the overall heating of the mold.

2 Insulation: The assembly is surrounded by refractory blankets (five sides) to retain as much heat as possible.

Add a duct heater

Extremely Compact High Power

Extremely Compact High Power Airtorch®


Electric Systems Offer Design Improvements / Enhancements
Combustion/Flame MHI Electric Systems
Appearance Non-uniform heating. Repeatable uniform heating – resulting in consistent label results.  Once conditions are dialed in, the setup will yield minimal variation.
Bottle or Treated Surface Combustion leaves deposits on the surfaces (visible to micro level) Airtorch® or Steam or Steam/ Air patented heating leaves no combustion product on treated surfaces.  Improves detail and appeal.
Sources Combustion source creates:

Explosion hazard

Costly fuel and disposal

Emissions of CO2 from combustion

‘Hot’ spots from flame  heating

Venting required

Electric Systems:

Electric flexible source.

Air or Water

No emissions

No combustion

Evenly distributed heat

No explosive consumables


Modules for a Green Work Environment
Combustion/Flame MHI Electric Systems
Modularity New gas lines, more consumables used, safety approvals, etc. Modular with flexible power lines as needed.

You can add and subtract modules in minutes.

Easy to install

Easy to operate

Easy change of configuration

Highly mobile

Repeatability Non-uniformities result from combustion treatment surfaces— uneven heating, combustion deposits, NOx, SO2, and more. Electric systems offer uniform, repeatable, and continuous treatment of products resulting in less variance.
Control Lack of precise control from combustion is a problem. Precise control of temperature and output gives high efficiency to your process.  A high level of control also allows for protection features such as overtemperature protection.