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FAQ

How does the VortX work and is it the same as a scrubber?

The design of VortX Ecofilters is based upon the concept of industrial scrubbers, which have been in use for more than 60 years.

What is the difference between the VortX and an afterburner?

Afterburners incinerate the smoke at extremely high temperatures (up to 1400 degrees Fahrenheit | 760 degrees Celsius) while the VortX purifies the smoke with atomized micro-droplets of water.

How difficult is the installation of the VortX?

VortX Ecofilters are installed right behind or next to your roasting machine. The exhaust of the roaster must be connected with the inlet of the VortX. The transition pipe can be ordered through VortX or it can be purchased from your local HVAC contractor.

What are the requirements for the connecting pipe between the roaster and the VortX?

The transition piece must be preferably double wall stainless steel. Alternatively, you can purchase ducting that has been rated for commercial ovens, with a heat tolerance of up to 800 degrees Fahrenheit.

Is the VortX EcoFilter a “wet scrubber”?

Yes, the VortX EcoFilter is a form of wet scrubber. It is uniquely suited to coffee roasting because it eliminates the problems of massive pressure drop, high-horsepower pumps and the deafening noise associated with traditional wet scrubbers

Where can I see a VortX in action?

VortX has customers around the world and perhaps close by you. Ask your VortX representative for a connection to a working VortX.

VortX is also working with customers and OEM roaster manufacturers to expand its library of videos showing stack emissions under various conditions.

I am purchasing a new roaster. Can I pair a VortX with this roaster and eliminate the cost of their conventional chaff collector?

Yes. Talk with your VortX representative about your plans. VortX is working around the world with leading roaster manufacturers who are eager to present their customers with a better solution to air pollution than afterburners or electrostatic precipitators. In the next few years we expect to see a large number of new roasters designed to take fullest advantage the benefits uniquely found in VortX.

How does the VortX EcoFilter compare to an Afterburner?

Hot, dirty air entering afterburner which is operating at a high enough temperature and adequate dwell time will destroy smoke and odor; there should be no visible emissions and very little odor. An EcoFilter filters a substantial amount of smoke, odor, VOCs and CO2 and releases steam together with some odor and smoke as you roast into 2nd crack.

How does the operating cost of an EcoFilter compare to an afterburner?

The EcoFilter costs less to purchase, less to install, and far less to operate. Typically 18 cents per hour compared to several dollars for natural gas.

What is the environmental cost of an EcoFilter compared to an afterburner?

There is no comparison: an afterburner releases massive amounts of global warming CO2. The EcoFilter produces zero CO2 and actually captures some CO2 produced by your roaster. The water from an EcoFilter is nutrient dense and can be used to water gardens. The wet chaff from the EcoFilter is compact and can be easily bricked for later use as a soil amendment.

What can I expect to see and smell at the end of my exhaust stack?

Every installation is unique and is subject to many factors not controlled by the EcoFilter.

  • Steam is the initial visible emission
  • Steam will pick up color as the roast progresses into and through 2nd crack; see video on our Home Page
  • The VortX process captures the majority of VOCs, thereby reducing odor from harsh and acrid to mild and reminiscent of baked coffee/bread

Does VortX make an EcoFilter which will fit my roaster?

EcoFilter is agnostic when it comes to the brand of roaster you operate. We sell based on air volume and air pressure. You tell us how much air you need to filter and we will recommend the right model for you. We will even design the ducting you need for a successful installation.

How Difficult is the EcoFilter to Install?

VortX engineers design ducting using advanced Computational Fluid Dynamics to assure each installation will perform its best. We provide a Bill of Materials you can use to source your ducting anywhere you prefer. The EcoFilter can be installed with single wall positive pressure ducting; no expensive insulated double wall ducting is necessary. Plumbing of water in and out can be done with simple rubber hoses.

Because the VortX works by flash-evaporation of water, the exhaust is humid and requires positive pressure ducting to prevent condensation from dripping out.

What happens if the EcoFilter stops working in the middle of a roast?

VortX has designed its products to be “fail-safe”. There is no risk of an explosion or fire, and you keep right on roasting. You do NOT lose a roast.

How durable is the EcoFilter?

The EcoFilter is constructed entirely of 2B Mill Finish Type 304 Stainless Steel. The plumbing including the pump are the highest quality we can source. Our Warranty is 12 months parts and labor.

Does VortX guarantee that the EcoFilter will enable my roaster to pass clean air regulations?

VortX cannot guarantee that your local clean air authority will issue an operating permit just because you plan to use an EcoFillter. There are some clean air regions where visible steam is not permitted; the local authorities prefer massive amounts of CO2 to steam. We will work with any customer to meet the demands of their clean air authorities, but we cannot guarantee their approval. VortX is working with local and national clean air regulators to help them understand how the EcoFilter works. We are extremely confident that given the very real existential threat of global warming and how our product actually captures carbon while keeping neighbors happy with smoke and odor, our product will gain acceptance and win approval as “Best Available Control Technology”.

Does VortX guarantee my emissions will not offend my neighbors and lead to complaints?

Every installation of a VortX is unique. We make no guarantee or warranty of fitness for intended use.

VortX does work with every customer to assure the best possible performance under that customer’s unique circumstances.

Do you have emissions data I can take to local authorities?

VortX will work with you and your local clean air authorities to help them understand exactly how the VortX process works

Contact your VortX representative to obtain our “Clean Air & Water” white paper, which includes test data from CARB-certified labs

Will installing an EcoFilter interfere with my roaster or require changes to my roast profiles?

We use computational fluid dynamics to design ducting for your exact roaster and installation site. The ducting plan we offer each customer should make the EcoFilter “invisible” to your roaster, as if venting straight out with no ducting. Many of our customers tell us that after installing their VortX and new ducting, their roasters worked better than ever.

Where can I dispose of the wet chaff and dirty water?

Wet chaff is nutrient-rich and can be composted and/or bricked. Water can be safely put into any gray water drain.