During a recent visit with our Hungarian Distributor, I had the opportunity to take a look at an application using some EXAIR Adjustable Spot Coolers and Mini Coolers. The company manufactures cataract lenses and is using the coolers in a dry machining application. The previous process involved using a liquid coolant which caused a washing operation to remove the contaminants before the lenses could move on to the next step of the process. This was not only time consuming, but the solution they needed to use as a coolant was very expensive due to strict regulations that they had to adhere to.
The lenses are set up on a lathe which are precisely cut. The Adjustable Spot Coolers were positioned with the cold airflow just at the point of cutting to keep the temperature at a specific point. If the lenses get too hot, the material becomes less rigid and begins to warp. When this happens, the lens cannot be reworked and must be scrapped. Immediately after coming off of the lathe, an inspector places the lens under a microscope for inspection. At this point, a Mini Cooler is installed to ensure that the temperature of the lens stays cold. If the lens passes inspection, it is immediately placed in a small freezer next to the operator. Temperature probes are in place at several points during the process to ensure that they do not go above the specified temperature.
By implementing a solution with the Adjustable Spot Cooler, this customer was able to boost productivity by removing a cleaning step from the process and also reduce costs by eliminating the need for the costly coolant solution that was required. If you’d like to replace messy coolant systems in your machining operation with a clean compressed air solution, give us a call. An Application Engineer will be happy to look at your process and recommend the most suitable solution.
A customer in Russia contacted our distributor in Moscow about an application to monitor the flow of melted glass. In their application, the end user had installed (4) camera “eyes” with thermal insulation to instantaneously measure the melted glass flow. But, the high ambient temperatures would cause the temperature of the camera lens to slowly increase during operation, eventually resulting in an overheating condition. This overheating condition rendered the cameras inoperable until they were cooled below a temperature of approximately 40°C (104°F).
What this end user (and application) needed was a suitable solution to cool the lens of the camera to a temperature below 40°C (104°F). A typical refrigerant based air conditioner wouldn’t work for this application due to space and temperature constraints, as the cameras are located close to the furnace with ambient temperatures of 50°C (122°F) or higher.
What did provide a viable solution, however, were High Temperature EXAIR Vortex Tubes. Suitable for temperatures up to 93°C (200°F), and capable of providing cooling capacities as high as 10,200 BTU/hr., these units fit the bill for this application.
After determining the volume of compressed air available for each camera, and after discussing the solution options and preferences with the customer, they chose (4) model BPHT3298 Vortex Tubes, using (1) Vortex Tube for each camera. The cold air from the Vortex Tube will feed directly onto the camera lens, keeping it cool even in the hot ambient conditions. This removes lost productivity due to machine downtime, which in turn increases output and reliability from the application process.
High Temperature Vortex Tubes provided a solution for this customer when other options were unable to deliver. If you have a similar application or would like to discuss how an EXAIR Vortex Tube could solve an overheating problem in your application, contact an EXAIR Application Engineer. We’ll be happy to help.