Fluid mechanics is the field that studies the properties of fluids in various states. Fluid dynamics studies the forces on a fluid, either as a liquid or a gas, during motion. Osborne Reynolds, an Irish… More
Noise, we all hate it to some extent. From the hustle and bustle of crowed streets to the whine of a jet engine noise has plagued the world for eons leaving people to search for a way to escape into a moment of peace and quiet. The majority of people that I know pack their massive over sized backpacks and head deep into the mountains for days on end to escape the noise sometimes traveling for 10+ miles at a time. But how can we help eliminate this monstrosity that we have created in our manufacturing environments? The answer is mufflers, and no I don’t mean your car muffler (although they do the same thing) I mean compressed air mufflers. Compressed air can be a loud utility inside of a plant environment and exceed the OSHA guidelines for personnel noise exposure. But this noise can easily be mitigated with the use of Intelligent compressed air products and mufflers.
OSHA Standard 29 CFR 1910.95(a) outlines the total noise exposure to a particular noise level per day and dictates that noise exposure at or above 85 decibels require ear protection. By placing a muffler on the end of the pipe one can reduce the sound level significantly to the point it could be the difference between having to wear ear protection and not having to. With that being said EXAIR offers four different types of mufflers to choose from and they are Reclassifying, Sintered Bronze, Straight-Through, and Heavy Duty.
Reclassifying mufflers offer the best noise reduction at 35 dB and have the added benefit of removing oil mist from the air line. This means that the Reclassifying mufflers are ideal for pneumatic cylinders. Per OSHA Standard 29 CFR 1910.1000 worker shall not be exposed to more than 5mg/m3 of oil by volume in a 40-hour work week. The patented design of the removable element separates oil from the exhausted air and meets or exceeds the OSHA Standard.
Sintered Bronze Mufflers are an excellent low-cost solution which can be easily installed into your current existing ports. These mufflers also come in the largest variety of different sizes ranging from thread sizes of #10-32 to 1.5” NPT. Also, the Sintered Bronze Mufflers are specifically designed to provide the minimal amount of back pressure and restriction. The main difference between these mufflers and the reclassifying is that the Sintered Bronze Mufflers cannot collect oil out of the exhaust.
If the process air needs to be directly plumbed away from personnel, then the Straight-Through Muffler is the way to go. Straight-Through Mufflers are ideal for situations that require both a threaded inlet and exhaust. In most applications you will see the Straight-Through Muffler pair with our E-Vac vacuum generators or Vortex Tubes to provide noise reduction of the unit. All in all, the Straight-Through Muffler can reduce noise levels up to 20 dB.
Lastly, the Heavy Duty Muffler provides a corrosion resistant aluminum outer shell with a stainless steel inner screen. This design allows the muffler to catch any contaminants such as rust from being ejected potentially causing harm or quality defects. Typically, this muffle will reduce noise levels up to 14 dB.
If you have any questions or want more information on EXAIR’s E-Vacs and their Accessories. Give us a call, we have a team of application engineers ready to answer your questions and recommend a solution for your applications.
In a previous life I worked in the metal cutting industry on machines that were all imported to the USA. Every machine we brought in had to have the air inlets changed out to match the NPT ports that most of our domestic customers had within their facilities. This simply made sense, why force someone to change an air fitting or something as simple as that to match the rest of their facility. The option we did not offer was to change all the hardware on the machine to match the rest of the SAE sized hardware and limit the number of tools their staff needed. That didn’t make sense. Well, here at EXAIR we like to do things differently.
There are several companies that I deal with here who always prefer their air inlets be different, whether it be a metric BSP thread or a larger NPT thread, maybe a global thread, or even a special fitting like a taper lock fitting. No matter the needs, as long as it will physically fit on the product, chances are we can offer the fitting that will simplify installation. Even past the installation we like to look forward to the complete ownership of our products. Once a machine is located in a facility, what other types of fasteners are used, what is the rest of the machine tooled with. When working on a machine as a maintenance person or adjusting the operation, not having to struggle with determining which Allen wrench or hex size a bolt is and risk damaging the bolt can be extremely helpful.
Most EXAIR products come from stock with standard fractional hardware. We do offer a number of products with a BSPT air inlet and they are often available with the same expediency as our other stock products, same day on orders received by 2 PM ET that are shipping within the U.S. As mentioned above, we can customize a product with the fasteners of your choice, as long as they pass our design criteria. Some of the most common fastener changes I have seen are converting a Super Air Knife to an M6-1.0 threaded bolt rather than the stock 1/4-20 fastener. There are a multitude of other requests that I recall throughout the years. Some of the most intricate are listed and explained below.
From left to right: M6-1.0 stainless steel bolt, a titanium hex-head bolt, a Hastelloy hex-head bolt, brass hex-head bolt, Kolsterized hex-head bolt, special acorn head fastener, Allen key flat-head bolt. Each of these fasteners has been used within a custom configuration to meet a specific need, whether it be simply to match the metric or SAE hardware in the rest of the machine or to meet the demands of the environment they are going into. The bottom row are, integral star washer nut, serrated safety washer, and spring washer. Each of these has, again, been requested by a customer to meet the design and safety standards they have a requirement for. These are just a sampling of the custom hardware we have used over the years to support our customer base and fill their need with product that meets their standards.
If you would like to discuss custom hardware in a stock product or even a full on custom point of use compressed air product, the Application Engineer team here is ready to help. Contact us and we will do our best to understand what your need requires and offer a solution to fit.
A company from the Middle East contacted me about cooling a gas sampling device that was placed inside an enclosure. The Middle East is well-known for Oil and Gas and hot ambient temperatures. The sampling system was used by a Petroleum company to measure the composition of gas samples. This type of device had a refrigerant system to keep the sample at a predetermined temperature. Since the ambient conditions were very high, they noticed incorrect readings with their calibration gas. They wanted to use an enclosure to protect the instrument from the environment and to use the Vortex technology to cool the surroundings of the gas sampling instrument to help it work properly.
Like with any A/C unit, the higher ambient temperatures will reduce the cooling capacity of a refrigeration system. The customer gave some details of what they needed. They wanted to target an internal temperature at a maximum of 35oC (95oF) which would allow for proper readings. The enclosure measured 2000 mm X 1200 mm X 1000 mm (79” X 47” X 39”), and it was made from 316SS with insulation inside. The area was classified as a Class 1 – Div2 which means that there is a potential for an explosive gas to be present. The sampling machine generated about 170 watts (580 BTU/hr) of heat inside. The maximum ambient temperature was 50oC, and the instrument grade air that was being used for the Cabinet Cooler was only at 6 bar (87 PSIG). With all this information, I had a lot to consider to determine the correct cooling capacity.
The first thing that I needed to decide was if they had a purge system on the hazardous panel. They sent a diagram setup of the panel as shown below. They did have a Z-purge system as reference as #4 in the diagram. (This was the correct type of purge system for a Div2 area). They also showed a check valve on the cold air side to reduce the potential risk for ingress. With the design of the EXAIR HazLoc Cabinet Coolers, we use a poppet valve to keep any dangerous liquids or gases from entering. So, they could remove it from their item list which saved them money.
With the calculation for the total heat load, I recommended the model HZ4840SS-316-240. When they installed the EXAIR system to their enclosure; they were extremely happy with the compact size and the ease of installation. Now, when a sample bottle came in for test, they were able to attach it to the gas sampler and allow for the Z-Purge system to evacuate the enclosure. Once the purge system cycled, the solenoid valve for the Cabinet Cooler as well as the gas sampling system started operating. With the instant cold from the HazLoc Cabinet Cooler, the gas sampling equipment was able to find the composition of the gas accurately and consistently.
The EXAIR HazLoc Cabinet Cooler Systems are designed to keep your electrical panels cool within hazardous areas like the Class I – Div 2 above. The certification is under UL Classified for Class I, Class II, and Class III areas with both Div1 and Div2. System shutdowns from electrical components overheating or incorrect measurements with gas sample analysis are costly and potentially dangerous. If you would like to discuss in more details about the different types of EXAIR HazLoc Cabinet Coolers, an Application Engineer at EXAIR will be happy to help you.
EXAIR proves often that we’re able to work with you to create a customized solution that best serves your application. Recently I had the pleasure of working with a customer who wanted a better solution on their tissue paper converting machine. What they currently had was too loud, too inefficient, and they knew there was a better way.
The machine was an old rewinder used to convert webs of tissue paper ranging from 99-115” in width. Installed on the old machine was a 115” drilled pipe with 1/16” drilled holes spaced out every ½” along the length of the pipe. This was using a substantial amount of compressed air and was significantly louder than they would’ve liked. They purchased a new machine that had an EXAIR Super Air Knife already installed and working great, so they reached out to us for some help.
The customer conducted some time studies to determine exactly how much air this application required. The air blast ran for 500 seconds per hour, equating to 8.3min/hr of air usage. The operation runs 24/7, but with time spent doing changeovers the actual run time is closer to 20hrs.
20hrs x 8.2min = 166 min/day of air usage
166min x 365 = 60,590 min per year
A 1/16” unpolished, drilled hole will consume 2.58 SCFM at a pressure of 60 PSIG. With a total of 228 holes across the full pipe, this is quite a bit of compressed air.
2.58 SCFM x 228 = 588 SCFM of compressed air
588 x 60,590 min = 35,626,920 SCF
Considering the lightweight nature of the material, we recommended that the customer use our .001” shim to cut the flow from our stock Super Air Knives to their minimum. We recommended our Model 110054-.001 and Model 110060-.001. At 60 PSIG, a Super Air Knife with .001 shim installed will consume 1.15 SCFM/inch of knife length.
114 x 1.15 SCFM = 131 SCFM of compressed air
131 x 60,590 min = 7,937,290 SCF
Installing the Super Air Knives with .001” shim reduced their air consumption by 77% for a total air savings of 27,689,630 SCF each year. But, what does this mean in terms of money? To determine the cost of compressed air, we use the approximate value of $0.25/1000 SCF.
27,689,630 SCF x $0.25/1000 = $6,922.41
In just one year, on this one single machine, this customer was able to save almost $7k per year. These knives quickly pay for themselves, then begin to contribute to your bottom line. All of this in addition to lowering the sound level and providing a safer working environment for their operators.
If you have areas in your facility that are using air inefficiently, contact an EXAIR Application Engineer today.