Radiant Heaters Information

How to Select Radiant Heaters


Radiant heaters use a reflective shield to direct radiant heat onto a heated surface. Many products are so precise that heat can be directed to pinpoint locations. Radiant heaters are used in food service, as well as in a variety of other applications. Radiant flat panel heaters are used in industries and applications such as space heating, drying and curing, water evaporation, food processing, sterilizing, material preparation, bonding and joining, and industrial manufacturing and production.


Performance Specifications

Important parameters to consider when specifying radiant heaters are maximum operating (sheath) temperature, AC voltage, kilowatts, and maximum watt density. 

  • Maximum operating temperature is the maximum temperature that the sheath covering the radiant heater may reach. Note that the maximum sheath temperature does not represent the maximum temperature that a heated substance may reach.
  • AC voltage represents the amount of AC voltage necessary to operate the heater.
  • Typically, the available wattage from radiant heaters is measured in kilowatts (kW).
  • Maximum watt density is the amount of wattage, per square-inch, that a radiant heater can deliver. Watt density is calculated by dividing the available wattage by the heated area. Watt density is a good measure of the heater's ability to quickly heat a substance. High watt density heaters should not be used with extremely viscous materials, materials that are not well-circulated or explosive/volatile materials due to risk of fire.  

Heating Element

Radiant heaters differ in terms of heating element configuration and available options. Common designs include: straight, hairpin or “U” shape, sheathed tubular element, and quartz element. 



The most important dimension of the radiant heater is the heated length, which is also sometimes referred to as the effective length.


Sleeve / Sheath Material

Radiant heaters are generally available with a protective covering, or sheath. Many heaters are available with multiple sheath material options. Sheath materials for radiant heaters include aluminum, brass, copper, iron, nickel alloy, stainless steel, and steel.



Radiant heaters can be installed several different ways. Mounting options for radiant heaters include sliding clamp or bracket, threat mounting bolts, or no mounting hardware.


Features common to radiant heaters include cooling options, internal temperature detector, liquid tight housing, cryogenic use, UL approval, explosion proof housing, weatherproof housing and corrosion resistance.


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