Application Database: Agriculture.

EXAIR uses many different methods to connect with our customers.  We have our website, social media, blogs, publications etc.  We like to share solutions for some of the most common pneumatic problems in the industry.  EXAIR generated a large collection of application information where EXAIR products have solved problems and improved processes, and we placed them in a database.  We organized them by Application and by Industry.  In this blog, I will show you how to use our application database; specifically for agriculture.

The agricultural industry is an essential business for people around the world.  So, it is very important to reduce costs and improve processes.  EXAIR has engineered products that can help in these areas.  This can include spraying fungicide, conveying products, blowing compressed air, and monitoring pneumatic systems.  Compressed Air Systems are considered to be a fourth utility within industries because they use a large amount of energy.  Whether an air compressor uses electricity or fuel for portable units, it is important to use this system as efficiently as possible.  EXAIR has a library of different processes in which we already have improved in these areas safely and efficiently.  If you are part of the Agricultural industry, it can be beneficial for you to find the areas that we already improved.  It is a “been there, done that” solution that you can take an advantage of using. 

Here is how you can find this library.  First, you will have to sign into the EXAIR website.  Click HERE to log in.  Once you fill in the proper information, you can then retrieve a great number of resources about EXAIR products that we manufacture.   The Application database is located under the Resources drop-down tab (Reference photo below) and at Applications.

At the Application Search Library, we have over one thousand applications that we reference.  In the left selection pane, we organized them in alphabetical order under two categories, Application and Industry.

Scroll down in the Industry selection pane until you come to the sub-category: Agriculture.  If you do not find it, you can select the Expand button to open up more industries.  We have other applications as well that may relate to your specific process if you scroll up and down the list, like Food and Beverage as examples. 

Why is this important?  If you are a plant manager or owner, the value of the Application Database can help your current processes with pre-qualified results.  Within the Agriculture industry, simple solutions can be found to address those “nagging” issues that you see every day.  For crisis situations and shutdowns, EXAIR categorized these applications in a way to reference quickly and easily.  And since EXAIR has a high volume of stocked items, we can get the parts to you very fast so you can quickly be on your way to a solution.

In today’s market, companies are always looking for ways to cut cost, increase productivity, and improve safety.  EXAIR can offer engineered products to do exactly that.  With the “been there and done that” solutions already described in the Application Database; you can have confidence in finding a way in solving pneumatic issues.  If you do not sign up at http://www.EXAIR.com and take advantage of these offerings, you will be missing out on a great tool to optimize your compressed air system.  And if you did not find a solution inside our Application database, an Application Engineer at EXAIR is available. 

John Ball
Application Engineer
Email: johnball@exair.com
Twitter: @EXAIR_jb

316SS Sanitary Flange Air Operated Conveyors Pull Corn Meal Quality Samples

Agriculture, it’s a word that invokes a lot of imagery. From the vast rolling fields, to animals roaming, to a simple life of tending to the land. For some it is the perfect life of hard work and simple living. Agriculture can make one think of tractors, heavy equipment, silos, fencing, and much more. But there is one thing that does not typically come to mind, and that is compressed air. Even though compressed air is not commonly thought of being used in agriculture does not mean that it cannot be used. In fact, it can be very useful.

In one application a manufacturer of corn meal needed to take a sample of the product to test the moisture content and quality before it was loaded into a rail car. The lab tech use to have to go out to the silo to scoop up about a pint and transport it back to the lab to be tested. To eliminate the manual retrieval and delivery of the corn meal EXAIR recommended a model #163300-316 3″ St. St. Sanitary Flange Line Vac Kit and was sold to the customer. A system of 100ft of pipe was installed from the silo to the lab so that the test sample could be conveyed by the Line Vac directly to the lab to be tested. This simple fix improved the reliability of the sample and decreased the time it takes to grab a sample. Along with the added benefit that now the lab tech does not need to walk over and scoop the sample out of the container or off the ground.

EXAIR’s Family of Sanitary Flange Line Vacs

Line Vacs are a great product for conveying bulk material from point A to point B and excel with “bucket and ladder” type scenarios where personnel is manually loading or unloading batches of material or scrap. EXAIR’s Air Operated Conveyors have always been well suited for applications involving food as the internal components are smooth and can be cleaned out easily and sanitized. With a 316 Stainless Steel body the unit provides superior corrosion resistance and can withstand most caustic cleaners and oxidants. The flange style connection also makes it easy to hook up and remove for cleaning purposes.

Model 161200-316 – 316 Stainless Steel Sanitary Flange Line Vac

Sanitary Flange Line Vacs are all made from 316 Stainless Steel and come in four sizes: 1-1/2”, 2”, 2-1/2”, and 3”.

If you are interested in more applications, check out our application database on our Website. Or if you have any questions on our Line Vacs give us a call, we have a team of application engineers ready to answer your questions and recommend a solution for your applications.

Cody Biehle
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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Super Air Knives in Agriculture

I spoke with an international agribusiness that specialized in improving processes with cutting-edge technologies in the agricultural sector.  They started a project with a company to improve their drying process for potatoes.   This company was washing 10 tons of potatoes per hour during 16-hour days.  The potatoes would travel along a conveyor that was 90cm (35.4”) wide after the washing system where they had three blower air knives to remove the water from the surface.  Since the project scope was to increase productivity, the agribusiness company targeted their biggest issue, the blower air knives.

They described the two main problems that their customer was experiencing.  First, the conveyor had to run at a slower rate to remove enough water from the surface of the potatoes before packaging.  Thus, the feed rate into the washing system ran intermittently to not overload the drying process.  The main issue was that the blower system was limited with force.  It could not generate a strong enough air stream to properly dry the entire spud at higher speeds.  Thus, the conveyor system was not at an optimal range.

The second issue was premature spoilage of the potatoes which had to be discarded.  I remember when my family would store potatoes in bunkers under the ground to keep them cool.  This would help to slow the bacterial growth which causes spoilage.  Blower systems generate hot air from the electric motors.  Since bacteria growth is enhanced with warmer temperatures, the potato company was noticing poor appearance and early spoilage.  To increase their profits, they wanted to dry the potatoes without heat.

110236SS Super Air Knife Kit

EXAIR has been manufacturing leading-edge technology since 1983, and we could offer a solution.  For removing water from the surface of the potatoes; the EXAIR Super Air Knife would be the perfect instrument.  This compact system is easy to install; and it does not have any moving parts to wear or need shutdowns for maintenance.

I recommended to replace the three blower-air knives with one piece of a model 110236SS Super Air Knife Kit.  The kit includes a 36” (914mm) 303SS Super Air Knife, a filter, a regulator and a shim set.  The regulator and shim set are specifically designed to control the force requirement and air usage to the Super Air Knife.  So, you can fine tune the correct amount of force to blow around the entire potato for effective drying.  For a stock Super Air Knife, the model 110236SS can generate 5.6 pounds of force (2.55 Kilograms) at 80 PSIG (5.5 Bar); a tough target for a blower air knife.  The agribusiness was excited about the concept and wanted to know more.

Another unique feature with the EXAIR Super Air Knife is the engineered design.  We are able to reach a 40:1 amplification ratio.  That means for every 1 part of compressed air, we can entrain 40 parts of ambient air.  What does this mean?  First, the Super Air Knife is very efficient within your compressed air system as we are using mainly free ambient air.  Second, since majority of the air is ambient, the temperature of the air is not heated; thus, a cooler air stream.   And third, by adding the mass of the ambient air, it gives a stronger blowing force.  So, the Super Air Knife was able to meet both of the agribusiness requirements.  In the end, we were able to cut scrap and increase the production rate by almost 10%.

If you need to dry your agricultural items with cutting-edge technology, EXAIR would be the manufacturer for you.   We are staffed with Application Engineers to find solutions and improvements, and we will be happy to discuss your application.  For this agribusiness company, they were excited to work with EXAIR to get a great result for the company above in the potato arena.

John Ball
Application Engineer
Email: johnball@exair.com
Twitter: @EXAIR_jb

Internal Mix Atomizing Spray Nozzle Used In Feed Additive Process

Last week I took a call from an agricultural customer looking to replace the spray nozzle used in their feed additive process. The soy oil/beeswax solution they are applying to the feed, is slightly viscous (close to 100 cP) which seems to be clogging the tight clearances inside the current nozzle, resulting in varying flow rates and an erratic spray pattern. They had tried to contact the current manufacturer several times for a solution but were unhappy with the lack of assistance they were receiving, not to mention the long lead times of 6-8 weeks for a replacement.

After further discussion, they confirmed they weren’t as concerned with the flow rate or spray pattern, as they were with the nozzle potentially getting clogged.  They were able to obtain some internal dimensions of the existing nozzle and after further review, I recommended they use our Model # AF1030SS Internal Mix Flat Pattern Atomizing Nozzle as a replacement. This nozzle has larger inside diameters which would reduce the potential for clogging. Our Internal Mix Atomizing Nozzles mix the liquid and air inside the air cap and produce the finest atomization. The flow rate can be changed by adjusting the control valve on the nozzle and/or by adjusting the liquid pressure. Internal Mix nozzles are capable of handling fluids up to 300 Centipoise. All of our Atomizing Nozzles are In STOCK, so delivery is never an issue.

Model AF1030SS Internal Mix Flat Fan Pattern Atomizing Nozzle

When considering an Atomizing Nozzle for an application, there are some general parameters that can be helpful in making the best selection.

  1. Do you have a pressurized liquid source?
  2. What is the fluid viscosity?
  3. What spray pattern best fits the process?
  4. How much flow (GPH/LPH) do I need?

If you have an application requiring a fine mist of atomized liquid spray, please contact an application engineer for assistance.

Justin Nicholl
Application Engineer
justinnicholl@exair.com
@EXAIR_JN