Last week I worked with a tablet manufacturer on a bottling application where they were having static issues in a key area of their process. After the tablets are made, they travel to a vibratory feeder where they are counted with a photo-eye sensor before moving to the bottling line. The problem was the vibration of the feeder was causing the tablets to contact each other which created powder, dust and a static charge that aided the dust settling on to the counting sensor lenses.
Over the course of the production cycle, as the dust built up, they were experiencing incorrect quantity counts. Keeping the sensor lenses clean was inconsistent and time consuming for personnel. They were also dispensing too many and too few tablets into the bottles. As a means to try to contain and capture the dust, they placed plexiglass over the feeder bowls and installed a vacuum head a few inches after the sensor but this only helped a little as the operators would still have to manually clean the sensor. Looking for a more reliable, “hands-free” solution, they contacted EXAIR for assistance.
When dealing with small area cleaning applications, the Ion Air Jet is the ideal solution as it provides a high volume of focused, ionized airflow. By incorporating the Ion Air Jet into this particular process, the customer was able to effectively eliminate the static charge on the sensor, releasing the particulate and directing it towards the vacuum head to be carried away. I recommended they operate the unit at low pressure as a way to control the outlet velocity so they wouldn’t disrupt the tablets process or overwhelm the existing vacuum flow.
EXAIR offers a wide variety of Static Eliminators for various industrial applications. With help selecting the right product to fit your specific needs or to discuss a particular application, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our application engineers for assistance.