CO2 Snow Cleaning Automation

Jason Rodrigues

Man with dry ice blasting gun CMW CO2 Technologies

CO2 snow jet cleaning technology​

CO2 Snow-Jet Cleaning systems use solid CO2 ice crystals as a jet medium. With its combination of mechanical, thermal and chemical properties, CO2 snow is able to gently detach and remove a whole variety of surface contamination. Developed at the Fraunhofer IPA in Stuttgart, Germany, the sublimation-impulse technique is the most efficient process to date for cleaning with CO2 snow worldwide.

As the liquid CO2 expands at the nozzle outlet, CO2 snow is formed which is accelerated to supersonic speed using a compressed-air jacketed jet and blasted onto the surface to be cleaned.

The CO2 snow cleans gently, is dry, residue-free and suitable for use for a wide variety of materials and material combinations. CO2 gas is non-flammable, non-corrosive, non-toxic and environmentally-friendly.

CO2 snow jet applications

Dry-cleaning with CO2 snow is a process which can be used on almost any material and in conjunction with any cleaning principle; it can offer up to 40% cost advantage over conventional cleaning techniques.

Dry Ice Pellets from CMW CO2 Technologies

Supersonic impulse while maintaining low CO2 consumption

As compressed air is used to accelerate the CO2 snow crystals, CO2 consumption is considerably lower than in one-component nozzle systems – and that’s with an increased performance at the same time.

Functional Principles

  • Embrittlement of the contamination through rapid cooling
  • Detachment due to the transmitted forces of pressure and shearing
  • Dissolving of adsorption bonds (solvent)
  • Rinsing (increase in volume of approx. 500x during sublimation)
  • Dry cleaning process
  • Non-abrasive
  • Solvent free
  • Environmentally-friendly and non-toxic
  • Cleaning is material non-dependent
  • Residue-free cleaning
  • Reducing costs
  • Improves product quality and process efficiency

CO2-gas derived from recycled CO2 is non-flammable, non-corrosive, non-toxic and environmentally-friendly.