Super Ion Air Knives Remove Static, Improve Bottle Cap Production

The leaves have all fallen. The sky, more often than not, is dreary. My winter coat is officially part of the “uniform of the day”. And I got shocked by the laundry room doorknob yesterday. All this means that winter is upon us (here in the Northern Hemisphere anyway), and as far as EXAIR is concerned, it’s “static season”. We’re seeing a definite uptick in the numbers of conversations we’re having about static charge-related issues…and solutions that we can provide.

I had the pleasure of speaking to a caller, last month, who works for the US division of a global manufacturer of bottle caps. A machine that sorts & orients plastic caps was particularly prone to static charge problems last winter, causing a marked decrease in their production, and they wanted to get out in front of the problem this year:

As the caps travel horizontally (white arrows), they pass under a static bar (supplied by the machine manufacturer) which provided some reduction in static charge, but was unable to keep up with the higher magnitudes of static charge experienced during the lower humidity winter months. Bottle caps (right) would pile up, slowing production.
A Model 112230 30″ Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife Kit replaced the OEM static bar, resulting in dramatic improvement…no more piling up of bottle caps.

The increased static charge (beyond the OEM static bar’s ability to handle) reduced production by 1/3. The Super Ion Air Knife restored operation to full capacity for this machine…and three others, once they saw the results of the first one.

If static charge is causing you problems with dust clinging to your product, your product clinging to itself, sheets mis-feeding, materials jamming, tearing, or curling, or nuisance shocks to operators, EXAIR has a variety of safe and efficient Static Eliminator solutions. To find out more, give me a call.

Russ Bowman, CCASS

Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife Cleans Art!

I took a phone call recently from an artist who applies thin colored films to glass sheets. He then uses several panes of that colored glass to build beautiful simplistic art installations! They are so clean and clear every angle you look through you get a different color and view you wouldn’t expect. But he was having a problem, these sheets of glass were building a large static charge and making every bit of dust and dirt stick to the surface. They were spending countless hours painstakingly cleaning every panel of glass because one spec of dirt would ruin the end goal.

Colored Glass Walk Way

Originally they called in to look at the Super Air Knife, which is good to remove dirt, dust and debris – but does not eliminate static if that debris were to be held on to the glass with static. His idea was to poor water on the glass then use the Super Air Knife to blow the water off, messy but they were hoping to kill two birds with one stone. Getting rid of the static and cleaning the glass all at once. He was excited when I told him about out our GEN4 Super ION Air Knife! It would have the ability to neutralize the static charge and blow away any debris clinging to the surface.

The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife floods an area or surface with static eliminating ions. With a uniform airflow across its length, misalignment to critical surfaces, like a web, is avoided.  The force can be adjusted from a light breeze, to a full out blast of air. The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife is electrically powered, is shockless and has no moving parts.

How It Works

gen4siak_hwrks_800x
How The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife Works

In the diagram above, compressed air flows through an inlet (1) into the plenum chamber of the Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife. The flow is directed to a precise, slotted orifice. As the primary airflow exits, it creates a uniform sheet of air across the entire length, pulling in in surrounding air (2). An electrically powered Gen4 Ionizing Bar (3) fills the curtain of air with positive and negative charges. The air stream delivers the static eliminating ions to the product surface (4) where it instantly neutralizes static and cleans off dust and other particulates.

The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knives are powerful tools, and very quickly dissipates 5kV of static even at low compressed air supply pressures. At 5 PSIG, only 3.7 SCFM (0.3 BAR, only 105 SLPM) of compressed air per foot of length is required!!  Sound levels are also very low, resulting in quiet operation.

super ion air knife performance

Added Features –

  • Compressed Air Inlets are provided on each end and the bottom of the Super Air Knife
  • Thicker shims can be installed easily if more force is needed.
  • Emitter points are durable stainless steel
  • The high voltage cable is armored to resist cuts and abrasion, and has integral grounding.  Threaded bayonet connector is fully assembled and ready to use
  • Electromagnetically shield cable protects sensitive electronics
  • Gen4 Ionizing Bars and Power Supplies are UL Component Recognized to U.S and Canadian safety standards and are CE and RoHS compliant
  • Power Supplies are 115/230 VAC selectable and come with 2 or 4 outlets
  • Standard lengths from 3″ to 108″ (76mm to 2743mm) are offered, and custom lengths are available to meet your process needs

Successful applications include web cleaning, pre-paint dust removal, shrink wrapper machinery, printing equipment, package cleaning,and bag opening/filling operations.

If you have questions about Gen4 Super Ion Air Knives, other types of Static Elimination products,  or any of the 16 different EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air® Product lines, feel free to contact EXAIR and myself or any of our Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.

Jordan Shouse
Application Engineer

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Twitter: @EXAIR_JS

Image courtesy of Jared Yeh Rainbow Panorama, Creative Commons License Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

EXAIR Case Study Library: Help Me Help You

EXAIR Corporation has a broad range of resources to aid in the selection of the right product for the right application:

If you’re a regular reader of EXAIR blogs, you’ve seen a number of “brags” on the successful implementation of just about all of our products. Another “more” part of our website is Applications, where you’ll find WAY more brief summaries of EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Product successes than we can fit in our catalog. These come from conversations, emails, and oftentimes shared photos or videos between EXAIR Application Engineers and our customers. We get to write those up as examples of our products making things better. On the occasions where the customer is willing to work with us to quantify how MUCH better our products have made things, we’re able to do a Case Study. A typical Case Study involves collection of “before/after” data, quantifying the benefits of using EXAIR products. This can include, but is not necessarily limited to :

  • Compressed air consumption
  • Noise level
  • Safety (OSHA compliance)
  • Performance improvements
  • Product durability/longevity

At last count, there are over forty entries in our Case Study Library. You can search these by Product, or by Application…depending on what, specifically, you’d like to know. Registration (free and easy) is required to access our Case Studies…if you’re already registered & signed in, you can read the details on any of them. For your immediate viewing, though, here are the pertinent details on just a few:

“Before/After” photos of this efficient and quiet upgrade.
  • More durable and efficient Safety Air Guns: This customer’s main concern was the durability of the air gun they were using. This was a situation where they sent one in for Efficiency Lab testing (that’s one of the ways we can help collect “before” data for a Case Study). I did this one, and the customer’s air gun’s trigger BROKE WHILE I WAS TESTING IT. In addition to providing a more durable product (a Model 1310 Heavy Duty Safety Air Gun, specifically), it also reduced the compressed air consumption from 63.5 SCFM to 14 SCFM, and the sound level dropped from 89.9dBA to just 74dBA.
EXAIR Safety Air Guns: rugged construction, quiet & efficient performance.
Static charge from simple contact between this injection molded plastic part & the mold caused defects in a subsequent metallic coating process (left,) which were eliminated after an EXAIR Super Ion Air Knife was installed (right.)

So, back to the title of this blog…how can you “help me help you” with a Case Study? Let’s start with that 2nd part. Upon successful completion of a Case Study, I can “help you” with a credit on the order you placed for the EXAIR product(s) that replaced what you were using before, or a discount on a subsequent order…if, for example you got a Super Ion Air Knife to try out on one of your headlight making machines, and it worked so good you want to put them on the other nine machines (true story).

The “help me” part is pretty easy too. If you have instrumentation (air flow meters, sound level meters, etc.) to gather the “before” data, we can use that for the Case Study. If you don’t, we do. You can send the subject devices in for Efficiency Lab testing…our engineering staff will use calibrated test equipment to work up a detailed performance profile on what you send in. It’s a free service we offer to anyone who wants this data, in fact, and Efficiency Lab testing has no effect on the credits or discounts we offer for participation in a Case Study.

I also “help you” (and “help me”) by keeping your name, and your company’s name, off the Case Study. That way, if your process or product is proprietary in nature, we don’t risk sharing your hard earned success with your competition. We also don’t run afoul of the authorities, like this one last Case Study I’m going to share, where a machine shop was blowing off parts they make for the military that are classified in nature. They had crimped copper tubing pointed at the cutting tool, and it worked…it was just loud and wasteful. They zipped the crimped ends off and installed Model 1100 Super Air Nozzles with a simple compression fitting. Had the photo below shown the machined part in the lathe chuck, “we’re ALL going to prison” according to the customer:

One well-cropped photo made for a great Case Study, and nobody had to go to prison. THAT was a good deal.

This one, by the way, saved 2.7 SCFM per nozzle (over $840.00 a year in compressed air savings), and reduced the sound level from 96dBA to only 76dBA.

EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Products have been making things better for compressed air users for almost forty years. If you’d like to find out how MUCH better we can make things for you, give me a call.

Russ Bowman, CCASS

Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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Static Season is in Full Swing, Super Ion Air Knives can Remove the Shock!

The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife is a powerful static eliminator that prevents jamming, tearing, shocks and dust build up by neutralizing static and blowing away the debris.

They combine the quiet and efficient Super Air Knife with the compact design of the rugged Gen4 Ionizing Bar resulting in a total solution to remove static electricity from plastics, webs, sheet stock and other product surfaces. Removing the static helps reduce or eliminate the process issues that the static electric causes, allowing for greater production speeds, improved product quality and a cleaner product. Some of the issues static causes include, dirt and dust buildup on surfaces, misreads for sensors, poor quality from ink jets, poor print quality on printed surfaces, and personnel getting shocked.

The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife floods an area or surface with static eliminating ions. With a uniform airflow across its length, misalignment to critical surfaces like webs is avoided.  The force can be adjusted from a light breeze, to a full out blast of air. The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife is electrically powered, is shockless and has no moving parts.

How It Works

gen4siak_hwrks_800x
How The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife Works

In the diagram above, compressed air flows through an inlet (1) into the plenum chamber of the Gen4 Super Ion Air Knife. The flow is directed to a precise, slotted orifice. As the primary airflow exits, it creates a uniform sheet of air across the entire length, pulling in in surrounding air (2). An electrically powered Gen4 Ionizing Bar (3) fills the curtain of air with positive and negative charges. The air stream delivers the static eliminating ions to the product surface (4) where it instantly neutralizes static and cleans off dust and other particulates.

The Gen4 Super Ion Air Knives are powerful tools, and very quickly dissipates 5kV of static even at low compressed air supply pressures. At 5 PSIG, only 3.7 SCFM (0.3 BAR, only 105 SLPM) of compressed air per foot of length is required!!  Sound levels are also very low, resulting in quiet operation.

super ion air knife performance

Added Features –

  • Compressed Air Inlets are provided on each end and the bottom of the Super Air Knife
  • Thicker shims can be installed easily if more force is needed.
  • Emitter points are durable stainless steel
  • The high voltage cable is armored to resist cuts and abrasion, and has integral grounding.  Threaded bayonet connector is fully assembled and ready to use
  • Electromagnetically shield cable protects sensitive electronics
  • Gen4 Ionizing Bars and Power Supplies are UL Component Recognized to U.S and Canadian safety standards and are CE and RoHS compliant
  • Power Supplies are 115/230 VAC selectable and come with 2 or 4 outlets
  • Standard lengths from 3″ to 108″ (76mm to 2743mm) are offered, and custom lengths are available to meet your process needs

Successful applications include web cleaning, pre-paint dust removal, shrink wrapper machinery, printing equipment, package cleaning,and bag opening/filling operations.

If you have questions about Gen4 Super Ion Air Knives, other types of Static Elimination products,  or any of the 16 different EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air® Product lines, feel free to contact EXAIR and myself or any of our Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.

Jordan Shouse
Application Engineer

Send me an Email
Find us on the Web 
Like us on Facebook
Twitter: @EXAIR_JS