One of the best parts about being an Application Engineer at EXAIR is the vast array of applications that customers call in with. Every time the phone rings, a chat notification pops up, or an email to Techelp comes in, another interesting application presents itself and the process of helping to provide a solution begins.
Recently, I worked with an Optical Scientist working on the next class of giant ground-based telescopes that promises to to revolutionize our view and understanding of the universe. He made contact with us via chat and said that he had seen a special Safety Air Gun being used to blow off a telescope mirror at a different telescope site. He said the unit had black plastic nozzles, which was preferred, because they would not scratch or damage the mirror glass. After receiving a photo of the unit, we were able to identify it as the model 1213-4-PEEK, Super Blast Safety Air Gun, with 4 PEEK Nozzles (PEEK = Polyetheretherketone, a thermoplastic).
The Super Blast Safety Air Gun is one of the EXAIR High Force Safety Air Gun offerings that provide a strong blowing force with the added convenience of a comfortable soft grip and easy to operate spring-loaded manual valve that automatically shuts off should it be dropped. The Super Blast Safety Air gun is ideal for long distance, wide area blowoff, cooling and drying applications. In the case of the telescope mirror application, the mirrors are outside and subject to dust and bird and bat “deposits.” After a thorough washing, the Super Blast Safety Air Gun provides the method for drying the mirrors. At 8.4 meters in diameter, a strong, far reaching blast of air is required to ensure complete drying of the mirror surface.
EXAIR offers a wide range of Safety Air Guns, from those offering small, precise blowoff of 2 ozs. up to large, strong blowing forces of 23 lbs. To discuss your special blowoff, cooling or drying application, feel free to contact EXAIR and one our Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.
Image Courtesy of “Giant Magellan Telescope – GMTO Corporation”