The effect of face velocity, pleat density and pleat orientation on the most penetrating particle size, pressure drop and fractional efficiency of HEPA filters

The increasing need for clean air in critical industrial applications has highlighted the importance of the role of air filters in providing improved air quality. Actual performance of air filters installed in air handling units and in the intake of gas turbines tends to deviate from the performance predicted by laboratory results. Therefore, accurate filter performance prediction is important to estimate filter lifetime, and to reduce energy and maintenance operating costs. To ensure that the desired efficiency of a HEPA filter is attained, the effects of face velocity, pleat density and pleat orientation on the Most Penetrating Particle Size (MPPS) of pleated HEPA filters must be examined. This paper compares the effects of varying these parameters on the MPPS. The paper also presents the initial pressure drop response and fractional efficiency curves using DEHS testing according to DIN 1822 for vertical and horizontal pleat orientations. It analyzes the underlying reasons causing surface area losses for different flow rates, pleat density and orientation as well as the effects on filter permeability. The tests conducted in this study used full scale HEPA pleated V-shaped filters from Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) and gas turbine applications.