OzoneLab Menu / Help
OzoneLab(TM) Instruments
Frequently Asked Question 1 Site SearchContact Us
Files ImageHome > F.A.Q. > Answers > Question 1

Question:

I am considering purchasing a Cold Plasma Ozone Generator because I've been told that it produces no heat. Is this true?


Answer:

=== First at all - I would like to point out that my following post is not being written with the intention to change anyone's decision.

There is no doubt in my mind that Cold Plasma ozone generators made their positive mark on the progress of ozone applications (including ozone therapies), however I believe the future belongs to advanced Corona Discharge systems or new combination (hybrid) ozonation systems.

=== It is puzzling to me how people are always seeking possibility to make things sound more simple then they really are. At the same time, people in general tend to prefer simplistic explanations over more complicated and complex answers.

It is a question of individual choice.

For those of you who prefer "simple as that" style info - please, stop reading now.....because I am about to present you with information which is considered by most people as too technical and consequently - not attractive.

==================================================================

Before I will start I should point out that a heat is just one of many forms of energy.

In general, less efficient electrical devices (appliances) will produce more heat then appliances with better efficiency. This is based on following:

incoming energy = energy used by appliance + residual energy (usually heat)

Example #1 - 100W light bulb

I assume most of you would be surprised to hear that standard light bulbs have efficiency as low as 2%. That means:

100W incoming energy => 2W energy changed to light and 98W of energy in form of heat

.... actually, standard light bulbs are quite energy efficient heaters.

Example #2 - 100W luminescent tube

have usually efficiency around 35%. That translates to:

100W incoming energy => 35% (+/-)W of energy changed to light and 65(+/-)W energy in form of heat

From listed examples is clear, Example #2 (35%) has better efficiency then Example #1 (2%)

Now, the discussion about "production of heat / no heat produced" by cold plasma generators can be resolved very easily. I know at least of three pathways how to reach some reasonable conclusions. Please, allow me to share them with you:

1. Theoretical path

  1. Cold plasma generators are strikingly similar to Neon sign tubes. High voltage is applied to two poles between which one of noble gases will create cold plasma field (inside the cold plasma tube). Efficiency of the cold plasma tube is by no means 100%, there are number of different reasons for energy loses associated with cold plasma tube, however I would like to list just one as an example - losses due to random movement of charged particles in the gas which are bouncing of the walls of the tube. This random bouncing is virtually impossible to eliminate and it "eats up" the energy and it is releasing this energy in form of heat generated by impact of particles bombarding the walls of the cold plasma tube.

    ***** Your own test - find the neon sign and touch the tube to check if it is warmer then the temperature of the environment they are operated in. There will not be significant difference, however _____there is_____ a difference.

  2. High voltage feeding the cold plasma tube with energy is produced by high voltage transformer. Transformers are (as well as light bulbs) known for their notorious inefficiency which is in literature stated usually around 30-40%. This is due to double conversion of the energy:

    Low voltage => magnetic field (primary winding)
    Magnetic field => high voltage (secondary winding)

    On top of it, there is a resistance of wire creating the winding, resistance to magnetic flow, resistance to .....

    ***** Your own test - find the neon sign and touch the high voltage (PROPERLY INSTALLED, ENCAPSULED - in other words SAFE) transformer to check if it is warmer then the temperature of the environment they are operated in. There will be significant difference.

    If you will take time and follow this theoretic path I outlined you must reach the conclusion that Cold Plasma is anything but "heat free".....

2. Comparison of energy INTAKE used by cold plasma and other ozone generators versus ozone production.

I am talking about measuring Voltage & Current needed to make these generators work, where:

Current is measured in Amp. (better in -mA-)
Voltage is measured in Volts

I do not have available this type of data for all Cold Plasma Units. However I did have an opportunity to test a few units produced by a manufacturer 2-3 years ago. Because the manufacturer claims that their products are based on Tesla technology, I assume there was no significant change in last two years.....

Please, allow me to provide you with comparison of the Cold Plasma Unit with an ozone generator which I would like to list as "No Name" unit:


Cold Plasma Unit "No Name" - 97 Model
Ozone production based on Cold Plasma High Frequency Corona Discharge
Size of the generator 15x13x7" (MIN) 11x6x4"
Ozone Output with 1/2LPM 29 gamma 22 gamma
Ozone Output with 1/4LPM 42 gamma 39 gamma
Ozone Output with 1/8LPM 53 gamma 60 gamma
Ozone Output with 1/16LPM 50 gamma 82 gamma
Ozone Output with 1/32LPM 43 gamma 91 gamma
Voltage 120VAC/60Hz 120VAC/60Hz
Current WITHOUT FAN connected 175-180mA (22Watts) 95-100mA (12Watts)
Current WITH FAN connected N/A 195-200mA (24watts)
Cooling fan No cooling fan 12W/120V,(34CFM)

From all what I can see I can draw following conclusions:

  1. "No Name" unit is smaller
  2. "NO Name" unit is has O3 output curve going always up (and higher)
  3. "No Name" unit has smaller current draw (almost 1/2 of Cold Plasma Unit)
  4. "No Name" unit total draw (including the cooling fan) is comparable with Cold Plama Unit

So, the question I would ask is simple.....I bet you think I would ask which ozone generator is better - NO, I WILL NOT :) :)

....I will ask:
If "No Name" unit needs only 95-100mA to produce more ozone then what the Cold Plasma Unit produces with 175-180mA, then what is the efficiency of the Cold Plasma system?

Lets ASSUME for a while that "No Name" unit has 100% efficiency and these 95-100mA are FULLY "used up" to produce ozone, then the only logical conclusion is that Cold Plasma Unit has its efficiency just around 50% .... the rest must be the heat (which Cold Plasma Manufacturers deny to have problem with - and consequently - do not incorporate cooling fan to their design). After all, how can someone incorporate the cooling fan into the design of their product(s) if all marketing is based on "NO heat" claim?

The fact that Cold Plasma Generators do not "burn out" does not necessary translates to "there is no heat generated". Generation of heat and generation of excessive heat resulting in "burn out" are two completely different things.

Do not forget - over all power consumption of Cold Plasma Units are 175-180mA => 21-22watts. With my theoretical assumption that efficiency of the Cold Plasma Unit is 50% try to put 10W (50% from 21W) light bulb into the enclosure 15x13x7" and evaluate if it will create enough heat to burn out anything....

I am sure you will observe the temperature increase of the enclosure, but you will not burn your hands.... however this temperature increase is going to be big enough to effect ozone output because ozone is very temperature sensitive (decomposing faster in warmer environment).

The extreme sensitivity of ozone to temperature (heat) was the reason why "No Name" generator were equipped with cooling fan blowing 34CFM (cubic feet per minute) of air trough the enclosure. Without this cooling fan the ozone output for flow rates 1/2, 1/4, and 1/8 will stay virtually the same, however ozone output with flow rate 1/16 and 1/32 would be compromised from 82 -> 75 and from 91 to 70 gamma respectively. Cooling fan provides:

  1. a stability of ozone output over long period of time (no gradual temperature increase of the ozone producing electrode resulting in gradual decrease of the ozone output - this is quite handy specifically with treatments longer then 30 seconds.
  2. conditions under which higher ozone output is achievable.

"No Name corona discharge ozone module" draws only 95-100mA => less then 12Watts. If we will consider the efficiency of "No Name" corona discharge module to be similar to Cold Plasma generator (50%) - it translates to approximately 6Watts of heat which is dispersed by the cooling fan with flow rate 34CFM => the volume of the air inside the cabinet is exchanged approximately 2x every second.... I would say that exchange of the air in the enclosure 2x per second is rather serious attempt to deal with possible 6W of heat - perhaps it can be even considered as "overkill"....

3. Evaluation of ozone output curve


Cold Plasma Unit "No Name"- 97'model
Ozone Output with 1/2LPM 29 gamma 22 gamma
Ozone Output with 1/4LPM 42 gamma 39 gamma
Ozone Output with 1/8LPM 53 gamma 60 gamma
Ozone Output with 1/16LPM 50 gamma 82 gamma
Ozone Output with 1/32LPM 43 gamma 91 gamma

It may seem that the value(s) of maximum ozone output produced by these two generators (43 & 91 gamma) are the most important and significant numbers in this table..... Nothing is farther from the truth..... The most important is the relationship and the "up & down" tendencies of different flow rates and correlating ozone outputs.

Cold Plasma Unit has a peek output with 1/8LPM with ozone output dropping with flow rate 1/16 and 1/32LPM. This is a clear evidence that unit is a subject to internal overheating - or is there any other logical explanation?

Needless to say - ozone output curve of "No Name" generator has "claiming " tendency on all its steps.

=========== >>>>> .... make your own conclusions about information I just presented you with.

=== Den Rasplicka - Ozone Services


© Ozone Services For problems pertaining to our Web Site, please contact our WebMaster