What is a Super Air Amplifier

When I was working summers during school years I remember working in environments that were in unsatisfactory conditions. Since I was the the new kid and did not have seniority I had to take on the jobs that nobody wanted and therefore had the less than perfect working conditions. This company had a solvent welding process that at the time used Methyl Ethyl Ketone (MEK) as the bonding agent for ABS substrates. If only they knew about Air Amplifiers then! The solvent vapors on a hot humid Summer day would build up and I had to keep up with the quota while feeling a bit dizzy and disoriented! I couldn’t even run a fan as they were nervous blowing contaminants onto the substrates before going into the paint room. This is where a Super Air Amplifier could have helped.

Air Amplifiers are used for various reasons but in the story above could have been used for ventilation and keeping a safer work environment. Along with ventilating gasses/fumes these can be used for cooling hot parts, drying wet parts, cleaning machined parts, venting weld smoke, exhausting tank fumes, distributing heat within molds/ovens (circulation) and more! Super Air Amplifiers use the Coanda effect, a basic principle of fluidics, to create air motion. Using a small amount of compressed air as the source of power, the Super Air Amplifier then pulls in a large volume of surrounding air to produce high volume, high velocity outlet flows up to 25 times greater than the compressed air source.

Air Amplifiers use the Coanda Effect to generate high flow with low consumption.

Air Amplifiers have no moving parts making them virtually maintenance free to operate. No electricity is required. The flow, vacuum and velocity are easily controlled. Gross outlet flows can be adjusted by opening or closing the compressed air gap, which determines the amount of compressed air used. Supply air pressure can also be regulated to fine tune the outlet flow to meet application needs. Both vacuum and discharge ends of the air amplifier can be ducted, making them ideal for drawing fresh air from another location, or moving smoke and fumes away.

EXAIR carries a variety of sizes and styles and will even custom make Air Amplifiers for your every need. If you have questions about Air Amplifiers and want to talk to any of of many Application Engineers please contact us by calling 800.903.9247 or visit our website at www.EXAIR.com.

Eric Kuhnash
Application Engineer
E-mail: EricKuhnash@exair.com
Twitter: Twitter: @EXAIR_EK

Super Air Amplifiers: Evacuation of Smoke or Fumes

Air Amplifiers Are Great For many things!

In the pneumatic industry, there are two types of Air Amplifiers.  One type will amplify the inlet air pressure to a higher pressure.  The other type uses the inlet air pressure to amplify the air volume.  EXAIR manufactures the volume type called the Super Air Amplifiers™. 

This change in air volume is called the amplification ratio.  So, what does this mean?  The definition of ratio is the relation between two amounts showing the number of times one value is contained within the other.  For the EXAIR Super Air Amplifiers, the ratio is the value that shows the amount of ambient air that is drawn within the compressed air.  The higher the ratio, the more efficient the blowing device is.  The EXAIR Super Air Amplifiers can reach amplification ratios up to 25 to 1.  This means that 25 parts of ambient “free” air is introduced for every 1 part of compressed air. 

Why an EXAIR Super Air Amplifier?  Like a fan, they are designed to move air.  But fans use motors and blades to push the air toward the target.  The fan blades “slap” the air which creates turbulent air flows and loud noises. The Super Air Amplifiers do not use any blades or motors to move the air.  They just use a Coanda profile and a patented shim to create a low pressure to draw in the ambient air.  In physics, it is much easier to pull than it is to push.  The process of pulling air through the Super Air Amplifiers make them a more efficient, uniform, and quiet way to blow air.    

Super Air Amplifier – flow region

To show the power of the Super Air Amplifier, we have a video of a model 120022.  In the video, oil is being heated to generate smoke, and the Super Air Amplifier is placed in the center of an exhaust pipe.  This demonstration was for a customer that was looking to evacuate vapors from an enclosed area.  Other applications would include welding smoke, ventilation, exhaust tank fumes, and dust collection.  You can see when the Super Air Amplifier is turned on and in operation in the video below. 

EXAIR manufactures and stocks five different sizes ranging from ¾” (19mm) up to 8” (203mm) in diameter.  Some of the benefits that the Super Air Amplifiers have is the inlet and outlet can be ducted for remote positioning.  They are very compact and can fit into tight places like the exhaust pipe above.  They do not have any moving parts to wear or need electricity to run.  They only need clean compressed air to operate; so, they are maintenance-free.  Another unique feature of the EXAIR Super Air Amplifier is the patented shim which optimizes the low-pressure to draw in more ambient air.   As an added bonus, they are OSHA safe and meet the standards for noise level and dead-end pressure. 

With the today’s cost to make compressed air, it is important to use it as efficiently as possible.  The EXAIR Super Air Amplifiers have the ability to give effective blowing to remove debris, dry parts, transport material, cool objects, and clear smoke without using a large amount of compressed air.  EXAIR has the Super Air Amplifiers in stock and as always, EXAIR offers a 30-day unconditional guarantee for our customers in the U.S. and Canada to try them out.  If you have any questions about the Super Air Amplifiers or if you would like to discuss your application, an Application Engineer at EXAIR will be happy to help you.

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

Thinking Outside of the Box

Over the years of working at EXAIR, I have spoken to thousands of customers. The applications we discuss can run the full range that is showcased in the Solutions section of our website. It is always fun to approach applications when we have to think outside of the box for a solution. Throughout the Application Engineering department, our level of experience here combined with the customer’s knowledge of their setup, sometimes results in a solution that is not straightforward. Sometimes, we have to think outside of the box.

What kind of application may we have encountered where the obvious solution wasn’t the one that worked? One of the best applications that came to mind for me is when a customer was attempting to lift/pick up a very porous piece of filter media like the pre-filter from a Heavy Duty HEPA Vac. This material is extremely lightweight and porous. When hearing from a customer, I want to pick this material up, my mind quickly goes to the E-Vac Vacuum generators which are used to generate vacuum to operate suction cups.

In-Line E Vac picking up a block of cut extrusion.

With this material however, the vacuum flow needed is quite extensive and there is another product which is going to be a more efficient use of compressed air. That product, the Super Air Amplifier. As you can see in the photo below, a 2″ Super Air Amplifier easily lifts the porous material and because the suction side is a nominal hose size a hose can easily be attached if needed. The image shows a single amplifier lifting a larger sheet from a bench, these could be organized in an array like suction cups to pick materials up.

Model 120022 – 2″ Super Air Amplifier picking up a porous pre-filter material.

The moral of the story is to keep an open mind for solutions, while one path will always work other paths may become a more efficient manner. These solutions don’t always fit inside a box nice and neat. The Super Air Amplifier fit this because the amount of air entrained is tremendous and can easily be utilized to pull low vacuum force/high flow applications. This is very similar to fume evacuation which would be a “normal” application for the Super Air Amplifier.

If you want to discuss any point of use compressed air application with us, contact an Application Engineer and let us help you determine the solution your job needs.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer

EXAIR Line Vacs™: We can do specials…

Here is a question; what is an eductor?    Eductors are also called ejectors, Venturi jets, aspirators, jet mixers, or jet pumps.  Eductors use either compressed gas or liquid to generate a vacuum by a Venturi effect which is based on Bernoulli’s equation.  (You can read more about the person here, “People of Interest: Giovanni Battista Venturi March 15, 1746 – April 24, 1822 By Tyler Daniel”.)  They can be used for vessel evacuation, gas sampling, pump priming, venting, and blending.  EXAIR Line Vacs work on this same principle in creating a Venturi vacuum by using compressed gas.  In this blog, I will cover the design, verification, and testing that EXAIR provided for a customer’s special.    

For this customer, the design was based around our 2” and 1” 316SS Line Vacs.  They required ISO flanges on the vacuum and exhaust sides to match their piping connections for gas sampling.  They would supply nitrogen to the inlet port as a carrier gas to generate the venturi and to mix with the sample gas.  Since the accuracy of the test is dependent on the amount of each gas, we had to test the operations of the Line Vacs at different conditions. 

First, EXAIR designed these special Line Vacs to get approval.  Once the customer approved, EXAIR had to make a strong effort to meet the other criteria that was requested.  Generally, with our standard Line Vacs, we use our test data with estimated conveyance rates, inlet flow rates, and vacuum pressures measured at 80 PSIG (5.5 bar).  For these special Line Vacs, we had to do a bit more work because it was for gas sampling.  This was not a problem for us.  EXAIR has many calibrated instruments to accurately measure different conditions.  For this customer, we had to measure the inlet flow, suction pressure, velocity, and maximum back pressure at different inlet pressures.  We also had to create another chart showing the exhaust velocities with a back pressure present. 

From these details, the customer could calculate the amount of nitrogen that would be introduced to the gas sample at different pressures and backpressures.  And, as an added preference, they requested us to do a leak check after assembly.  We were willing to buy the flange blanks and add this test procedure to the router.  We looked for leaks between the cap and body of the special Line Vac, as well as the flanges to verify that gas was not escaping.  EXAIR tries to support our customers to the best of our abilities.  For this customer, we worked together to provide the needed information for their setup.    

The reason that I wrote this blog was to show that EXAIR has the capabilities to make special items for specific applications.  If we need to use different materials, design configurations, and even present test data, we can decide the best course of action.  With special products, they are unique to customers in fit, form and function as a solution, whether for end-users or OEMs.  For the special Line Vac above, we presented the data as related to an eductor for this customer’s decision to place the order.  If you would like to see if EXAIR can make a special product for you, please do not hesitate in contacting an Application Engineer at EXAIR.  We will be happy to work with you. 

John Ball
Application Engineer

Email: johnball@exair.com
Twitter: @EXAIR_jb