Several years prior we had a customer that was using a block-type Air Wipe from a competitor to remove water from an extrusion. These air wipes were built using materials similar to UHMW and the 2 halves were hinged with air holes drilled into it. They were using these block air wipes on several lines and decided to try an EXAIR Super Air Wipe after contacting our Application Engineers. The interesting point was that it required 5 block type air wipes to equal the efficiency of 1 EXAIRSuper Air Wipe.
Since one EXAIRSuper Air Wipe equaled the performance of 5 of the competitor’s products it consumed less air, was less expensive and produced less noise. Also in space sensitive applications the EXAIR Super Air Wipe is much thinner than the block type. To highlight this the Super Air Wipe is 1.13″ thick on all 11 models that range from 3/8″ to 11″ throat diameter.
Another clear advantage is performance. The block air wipe performance can only be changed by altering the inlet air pressure while the EXAIRSuper Air Wipe can also be changed by adjusting the inlet air pressure or changing the air gap of the Air Wipe. Simply by changing out an internal shim, the air gap will allow more or less volume of compressed air at a given pressure. By changing shims and adjusting pressure, EXAIR Super Air Wipes provide the flexibility which leads to a successful application across industry.
Compressed air flows through an inlet (1) of the Air Wipe into an annular chamber (2). It is then throttled through a small ring nozzle (3) at high velocity. This primary airstream adheres to the Coanda profile (4), which directs it down the angled surface of the Air Wipe. A low pressure area is created at the center (5) inducing a high volume flow of surrounding air into the primary airstream. As the airflow leaves the Air Wipe, it creates a conical 360° ring of air that attaches itself to the surface of the material running through it (6), uniformly wiping the entire surface with the high velocity airflow.
EXAIR’s GEN4 Super Ion Air Wipe provides a uniform 360° ionized airstream that is simple to clamp around a part for reducing static electricity and cleaning contaminants. It is great for use on pipe, cable, extruded shapes, hose, wire and much more. We offer the GEN4 Super Ion Air Wipe in either 2” or 4” inner diameter, it is powered by compressed air and an external power supply. The GEN4 Super Ion Air Wipe generates both positive and negative ions that are transmitted the emitter points located on the i.d. of the wipe. Since static charges can be either negative or positive it is easy to eliminate both states of charge due to the mixed polarity of ions being generated. The power supplies are available with either 2 or 4 outlets (can power up to 2 or 4 GEN4 Static Eliminators simultaneously) and are UL recognized, CE and RoHS compliant. The power supplies also have a selectable input voltage for either 115 or 230VAC.
Another great feature of the GEN4 Super Ion Air Wipe is the split collar design that utilizes a clamp and hinge making it easy to clamp around the surface of the material moving through it eliminating the need for time consuming “threading”.
How does the Super Ion Air Wipe work? The Super Ion Air Wipe envelopes the part passing through it with a stream of compressed air to strip contaminants and bathes it with ions to diminish any static charge. The airflow follows the surface of the material passing through it and can be effective up to 15′ (4.6m) away from where the Super Ion Air Wipe is located. The optional pressure regulator allows for fine adjustments of the air volume and velocity and the optional shim set allows for large air volume and velocity adjustments.
If you would like to discuss reducing static and/or cleaning of continuous runs of materials, I would enjoy hearing from you…give me a call.
If you’ve ever used an air gun to blow something off, you’re familiar with the cleaning ability of compressed air. If you can get the whole object blown off from where you’re standing, there really is no substitute…but what if you need to get to the other side…or sides?
This is where the EXAIR Super Air Wipe comes in…they allow you to blow a continuous, uniform 360° air stream, all around your product. Consider their benefits:
*Sizes: the Super Air Wipe’s compact ring design means it won’t take up a lot of room; you just need a few inches, in any direction, to install one. We stock them in eleven sizes, from 11″, all the way down to our brand-new 3/8″ diameter.
*Durability: All EXAIR Super Air Wipes are assembled with stainless steel shims and hardware. Models up to 4″ come with a rugged, stainless steel wire braided hose, connecting the two halves for compressed air supply.
*Ease of installation: Smaller sizes can be supported by the compressed air supply line, if a pipe is used and threaded into the connector hose’s 1/4 NPT port. Larger sizes can likewise be adequately supported with pipe to both halves. All models have a bolt circle of 1/4″-20 tapped holes for more permanent and rigid mounting. The split ring design is another key feature:
*Corrosion resistance: Depending on the environment in which the Super Air Wipe will be installed, we offer them with aluminum (3/8″ – 11″ sizes) or stainless steel (3/8″ – 4″ sizes) bodies.
*Temperature rating:Aluminum Super Air Wipes are good to 400°F (204°C) and stainless steel models are good to 800°F (427°C.)
*Range of operation: We install a 0.002″ thick shim in all stock Super Air Wipes; this is suitable for a wide range of typical industrial/commercial blow off applications…a Pressure Regulator can then be used to “dial in” the air flow precisely to meet specific needs. If a job calls for higher force & flow, additional 0.002″ shims can be installed. Shim Sets come with the Super Air Wipe Kits, or individual shims can be ordered separately.
*Performance: Before the Super Air Wipe, a ring of nozzles was commonly used. In fact, they still are, but we’re trying to fix that, at every opportunity we come across. Problem with those is, it’s hard to get an even air flow all around, which leads to inconsistent blow off. They can also be loud & inefficient, as we’ve found in numerous Efficiency Lab tests and Case Studies, like this one…
…and this one…
Do you have a challenging blow off application that you need help with? Call us to find out how an EXAIR Super Air Wipe (or another one of our Intelligent Compressed Air Products) can be a simple, quick & easy solution.
EXAIR offers the Air Wipes in diameters from 3/8″ (10mm) to 11″ (279mm), all in stock! (Note – 3/8″ (10mm) size available in aluminum only)
As a final review, consult the table below for a comprehensive summary of the materials of construction for the EXAIR Stainless Steel and Aluminum Super Air Wipes and the Standard Air Wipe.
If you have questions about the Air Wipes, or would like to talk about any of the EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air® Products, feel free to contact EXAIR and myself or any of our Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.
A close relative to the Super Air Knife, the Super Air Wipe provides a uniform 360° laminar airflow for blowing off, drying, cleaning, and cooling a wide variety of pipe, cable, extruded shapes, hose, and wire. Its split design allows it to be easily clamped around the surface of the material without having to “feed” the material through.
The Super Air Wipe is available in aluminum construction in sizes ranging from 3/8” – 11” diameter. All Super Air Wipes comes with stainless steel hardware and stainless steel shims. Sizes up to 4” include plumbing to supply both halves of the Super Air Wipe. Sizes over 4” should be piped directly to each ¼ NPT compressed air inlet on each half. In addition to aluminum construction, the Super Air Wipe is also available in 303 stainless steel for corrosive or high temperature applications. The Stainless Steel Super Air Wipe can withstand temperatures up to 800°F and is available in sizes from ½”-4” from stock.
Much like the Super Air Knife, the Super Air Wipe has ¼-20 tapped holes along the downstream side that can be used for mounting. Smaller Super Air Wipes can be supported by rigid compressed air pipe that is used to supply the unit. The Super Air Wipe is also infinitely adjustable through the use of shim sets or a pressure regulator. Kits will include the Super Air Wipe, shim set to make gross adjustments to the airflow, an auto-drain filter to keep the air clean and dry, and a pressure regulator. By adjusting the input supply pressure to the Super Air Wipe, you regulate both the force and flow that is projected onto the target material. Increasing the input supply pressure will increase both the force and flow from the Super Air Wipe. This video blog demonstrates how effective the Air Wipe is when drying 1-1/2” PVC pipe:
If you’re processing any type of hose, wire, or extruded shapes that could benefit from installing a Super Air Wipe, give us a call. With all sizes shipping from stock on an order received by 3:00 pm EDT we can have one to you as early as tomorrow!
A tier 2 automotive company makes small metal boxes with a process which includes laser welding and a vision inspection system. The machine was programmed to weld different components onto the metal enclosure. During the welding operation, an optical sensor would check the quality of the welds. The vision system used a lens to protect the sensor from welding slag and debris. After a few operations, they started seeing false positives in the welding areas, and the metal enclosure would be flagged for rejection. In investigating the issue, they found that the lens was getting dirty from the welding operation. Because of the sensitivity of the sensor, it would detect the debris and marks on the lens and signal for poor weld. The lens was doing its part in protecting the sensor from damage; but, they needed a way to shield the lens from dirt and slag during the welding operation and visual inspection.
With this process, the machine would weld metal fasteners onto an enclosure by laser. The optical sensor would move along the welded areas to check the quality. In a lead/lag operation, the vision system would check the welds after a few seconds of cooling. So, both operations were occurring at the same time but at different intervals. When they started to see the rejection rate increase, they would have to stop the operation, clean the lens, and verify the integrity of the welds. In some cases, they would have to replace the 1 ¼” diameter lens especially if a piece of welding slag marred the surface. With incorrect rejections and lens cleaning, downtime was hurting their production rates and cost.
This customer wanted to use compressed air because it is a powerful and invisible way to create a shield. Since EXAIR is a leader in efficient and effective ways to use compressed air, they contacted us for help. Initially, I suggested a Super Air Knife to deflect any slag and debris from the lens surface. I showed a prior solution to a very similar issue; “Air Shielding a Laser Lens” (Reference below). But, because of the proximity to the part and the limitation in space, the Super Air Knife configuration in the solution below would make it impossible to use. They were looking for a product that could be mounted either flush or behind the surface of the lens and still protect it.
To accommodate for this request, we had to direct the compressed air stream at an angle. EXAIR manufacturers a product that can do just that, the Super Air Wipe. The design of the Super Air Wipe blows compressed air at a 30-degree angle toward the center in a 360-degree air pattern, just like a cone. It can be placed around the lens and still be able to create a “wall” of air to block any slag or debris from hitting the lens.
I recommended the model 2452SS, 2” Super Air Wipe Kit. This Super Air Wipe has the body, braided hose, hardware, and shims that is made from stainless steel. It can handle the high heat loads from the welding process as well as to allow for easy cleanup after a day of operating. The kit includes a filter, to keep the compressed air clean; a regulator, to finely tune the force requirement; and a shim set. The shim set includes two additional sets of shims that can be added to increase the force of protection if needed. With the kit, the customer can “dial” in the correct amount of force needed to keep the lens clean without using excessive amount of compressed air.
As an added benefit of saving compressed air, the Super Air Wipe uses the Coanda effect to maximize the entrainment of ambient air into the compressed air stream. This makes the unit very efficient and very powerful. The Super Air Wipe was mounted just behind the lens like the customer required (Reference mock picture below), and the sensor could examine the welds without any interference with the metal enclosure.
Visual inspections systems are highly accurate pieces of equipment, and a dirty lens will affect the performance. EXAIR has many ways to keep the lens clean with a non-contact invisible barrier to protect sensors, cameras, and lasers. If you have a similar application, you can contact an Application Engineer to determine the best way to keep the lens clean and your equipment functional. After mounting the Super Air Wipe, the customer above eliminated any false rejections, and dramatically decreased any downtime for cleaning or replacing the lens in his welding machine.
I don’t want to sound “preachy,” but I’m a stickler for using the right tool for the job. Case in point: just the other day, I noticed (OK; my wife told me about) a loose drawer handle. I went to my toolbox in the garage to get a flat-head screwdriver, even though the drawer in question had a selection of butter knives, any one of which could have been used to tighten that screw.
I can trace this, without doubt or hesitation, to my service in the US Navy, under the direction of Senior Chief Cooper. Proper tool selection & use was VERY important to him. He stressed the issues of safety, quality, and performance, but if that didn’t work, he’d make his point with an offer to demonstrate the use of a specific tool (a ball peen hammer) on a sensitive part of your anatomy (it’s exactly the part you’re thinking of.) At that point, it would have been unwise (and unsafe) to question whether that was a proper use of the tool or not.
Likewise, there are safety, quality, and performance issues associated with compressed air blow offs. At EXAIR, we’re ALL sticklers about this, and we get calls all the time to discuss ways to get more out of compressed air systems by using the right products. Here’s a “textbook” example:
A hose manufacturer contacted me to find out more about our Air Wipes, and how they might be a better fit for their various cleaning & drying applications (spoiler alert: they are.) The blow offs they were using were made of modular hose, designed (and very successfully used) for coolant spraying in machine tools.
The selection process was two-fold: they purchased one Model 2401 1″ Super Air Wipeto verify performance, and they sent in some of their modular hose assemblies for Efficiency Lab testing. The first part was just as important as the second because, no matter how much air they were going to save (another spoiler alert: it was significant,) it wouldn’t matter if it didn’t get the job done. At the station shown above, the Super Air Wipe resulted in superior performance, and a compressed air cost savings of over $400.00 annually. For that one station. Based on that, they outfitted TWENTY FIVE stations with engineered product sized for their different hoses, using our Model 2400 (1/2″), 2401 (1″), 2402 (2″) and 2403 (3″) Super Air Wipes.
If you’d like to find out how using the right product for the job can help your operation, give me a call.