for STEAM and AIR process

Lagarde Autoclaves is convinced that social progress, workers safety and environment protection are crucial for a sustainable and long-term economic growth. Among the different retort technologies, Full Water Immersion and Hot Water Spray (the historical processes), are commonly offered by manufacturers throughout the world: simple to manufacture, those processes face the heavy problem of over-excessive consumption of our precious resource: water. The generation and use of which are harmful to the environment.

This is why, when we design and offer a Lagarde Steam and Air retort, our designers and engineers’ main goal is to make the greenest retort as possible. Also every new Lagarde retort is built using highly recyclable materials.

autoclave 2000

Becoming a new Lagarde Steam and Air retort owner, you will benefit of:

Savings, Homogeneity, Axiom, Security

Use only what you need: steam consumption is optimised thanks to direct steam injection. Facts: improved using costs (TCO – Total Cost of Ownership).

With a conventional water retort, the heat transfer fluid (liquid water) flows from the top to the bottom on the products positioned in the shower only and only on part of the exchange surface of the products to be treated.

With the Steam an Air technology invented by Lagarde in 1972, steam (gaseous form of water) will occupy the entire enclosure, therefore the products and will exchange with the entire surface of the products who’s to be treated.

As mentioned in the scientific literature, the Lagarde Steam and Air system is the only process able to deals with all packaging, thanks to the combined advantages of a gas property, forced circulation with the fan, and the Lagarde soft cooling system. (Source: “La conserve appertisée”, J. Larousse, p.584)

Temperature accuracy with independent pressure and packaging shape (controlled forced ventilation)

– No umbrella effect as opposed to water spray systems
– No thermal shock thanks to the Lagarde soft cooling system: accuracy up to 0,2°C.
– No risk of the obstructed spray nozzles during the cycle.

Figures highlighting the main advantages of the Lagarde Steam and Air process face to water processes

Steam savings, electricity and water : energy savings from 30% to 80%
Faster cycle inducing higher productivity:

Come-up-time shorter from 20% to 40%
Sterilization time reduced by 10% to 20%
Fluid contact zones on the packaging 2 to 5 times higher
Required boiler capacity 30% to 50% lower

Lagarde Steam and Air compared to Water processes

operating costs

This study, undertaken by an American University, clearly shows the consumption differences between the technologies:
(Results presented at the US institute of thermal process by Rieks Bruins from the Rutgers University in 1995).


operating costs 8


The above study show that the Steam & Air technology allows savings of up to 100% on utilities compared with other processes.
These results are easily explained by a few basic scientific data.


Scientific facts

1. Some key figures

The figures will help you to understand why the Lagarde Steam and Air process use less energy than any other water spray process.


All system using water as an intermediate fluid for heating requires much more energy than direct steam heating and will consequently need to use even more water to cool down the process water and the products.

2. Thermal exchange capacity of different fluids

Every scientific studies shows Steam is the best heat medium for a perfect transfer of energy.

thermal exchange


3. Concrete case study with meat pâté cans

Initial input

Heat exchanger efficiency: 95 %
Cooling water: 120 L per basket – 1 Kcal / °C / Kg
Product: 300 Kg per basket – 0.75 Kcal / °C / Kg


Energy request for heating:

Lagarde STEAM & AIR : 300 Kg x 0.75 = 225 Kcal / °C
HOT WATER SPRAY : (300 Kg x 0.75 + 120 Kg x 1) / 0.95 = 365 Kcal / °C

LESS 40% heating energy required for the Lagarde Steam and Air compared to Hot Water Spray.