Solving Static Problems with an Ion Point

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An Ion Point can provide static elimination with a small footprint and easy installation

I came into the office today to find an interesting application in my inbox.  A small plastic parts manufacturer was facing a problem when sealing their items inside of plastic bags.  The problem arose from an inability to properly place a small strip of glue on the bags, resulting in unwanted glue on the parts and, at times, the exterior of the bags.  What should have been a small strip of glue ended up as a random spread of adhesive due to a static charge on the plastic bags. So, they contacted EXAIR for a static solution.

In this application the first important parameter to check was the type of glue in use.  Some glues are flammable and the vapors from them can be potentially ignitable, so making sure there was no risk for explosion was our first priority as our products are not recommended for use in potentially flammable or combustible applications.

After determining there was no risk for explosion, we then considered the application in more detail.  The static solution needed to be small, effective, and there was an important aspect for this application – the solution could not have any airflow.  The parts which are placed into these bags have low weights, and even a small airflow could remove them from the bags.  So, we needed an airless solution that was compact and effective.

The solution was an Ion Point.

An Ion Point creates a small ionizing “zone” of approximately 2” x 2” (51mm x 51mm) without any airflow.  At this distance, the static elimination from an Ion Point can dissipate a 5kV charge in 0.24 seconds.  The small footprint and airless operation of the Ion Point made it an ideal candidate for this application.

By installing an Ion Point between the bag opener and the glue applicator, the static charge was eliminated and the process disturbance was removed.  We were able to solve this problem, offering a readily available solution (from stock) that fit the specifics of the application.

As the temperature and humidity in the northern hemisphere drop, static problems become more prevalent.  (Click here or here to read about why this happens.)  If static problems arise in your facilities, consider an EXAIR solution.  We’re available to discuss applications and solutions M-F, 8-5 EST.

 

Lee Evans
Application Engineer
LeeEvans@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_LE

Expert Assistance Results in the Best Product for the Job

I’ve written before on the Principles of Operation of EXAIR products, and about how there may be more than one option to consider when choosing an engineered Compressed Air Product…here, here, and here.  This may, in fact, be the most valuable service that an Application Engineer can offer a caller: providing the BEST solution, regardless of what the initial idea was. Case in point:

A caller who was familiar with our Reversible Drum Vacs’ (RDV) two-way pumping action wanted to see if he could use one for a similar purpose: they were putting a thin plastic bag liner in an open top drum, and used an electric shop vacuum to suck the air out from between the drum and liner, essentially “form fitting” the liner to the drum. Then, when they fill that liner with their product, they reverse the shop vacuum, blowing air INTO the space between the drum & liner, to assist in removing the bag. This works, but the electric vacuum is loud, and they have to move the hose from one connection to the other every time they want to put a bag in or take it out of the drum.

Like I said, the caller was familiar with our Reversible Drum Vac, so he was picturing it pulling a vacuum on the drum to pull the bag in place (when the RDV is in the “fill” position) and porting air into the drum to expel the bag (when it’s in the “empty” position.)

With a simple turn of the knob, the Reversible Drum Vac can fill or empty a 55 gallon drum in 90 seconds!
With a simple turn of the knob, the Reversible Drum Vac can fill or empty a 55 gallon drum in 90 seconds!

Thing is, the RDV needs to be installed on a drum lid, and there wouldn’t be a very effective way to port it to the space between the drum & the bag. Here’s where our attention turned to another product: the E-Vac Vacuum Generator. Same principle of operation, but easily adaptable to their specific need, because it’s, quite simply, built for adaptability.

EXAIR E-Vacs provide instantaneous vacuum response, and are engineered for high efficiency to minimize air consumption.
EXAIR E-Vacs provide instantaneous vacuum response, and are engineered for high efficiency to minimize air consumption.

By plumbing the vacuum port (#4 above) to a tube inserted into the drum (same as their shop vac’s hose) they can quickly pull a vacuum, which pulls the bag into place. With a valve installed on the exhaust port (#5 above,) they can close the valve to port the compressed air supply back through the vacuum line, expelling the bag. No noisy electric motor, no constantly changing the hose, just a small (Model 800005M In-Line E-Vac Low Vacuum Generator w/Muffler, in this case) compressed air operated device, with no moving parts.

With (14) Models to choose from (seven sizes, all available in "High Vacuum" for non-porous products and "Low Vacuum" for lifting objects with a porous surface,) we've got the solution to your pick-and-place application.
With (14) Models to choose from (seven sizes, all available in “High Vacuum” for non-porous products and “Low Vacuum” for lifting objects with a porous surface,) we’ve got the solution to your pick-and-place application.

If you have a need for air flow, vacuum generation, cooling, static elimination, industrial housekeeping, atomized fluid spraying, bulk material conveyance, or just questions about improving your use of your compressed air, give us a call. We’re eager to help.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
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