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Efficint Pneumatic Valves Promote Energy Savings

Matt Milstead

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There was a time when no one cared about environmental technology. After all, gasoline was priced cheaply, usually under a dollar per gallon, and everyone was happy enough to use as much as possible. However, times have changed a lot in the past few decades. The cost of fuel has sharply increased, and people more aware that they need to treat the earth's nonrenewable resources with care. With that in mind, scientists have been looking into building pneumatic valves that use fewer amounts of energy.

Twenty or thirty years ago, a pneumatic valve would have consumed 6 Watts of power, and only lasted for 10 million cycles. Nowadays, the same valves can get in about 100 million cycles while only consuming around 0.1 Watts of power. Using 60 times less energy and bringing about 20 times greater shelf life is an incredible accomplishment, and there are many reasons for this transition.

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Modern Valve Designs:

Using flow amplification techniques, along with other methods, helped to bring about this low level of energy consumption from the valves. Having a small three port valve with two portions operating the larger air-operated valve used far less energy, and also reduced the overall size of the mechanism.

In time, other changes were made to the valves. For example, materials were altered to be more efficient and lighter. Zinc die casts were replaced by anodized aluminum, with engineers finally settling on a plastic mechanism. Valves are now streamlined, of very low mass, and have greater flow capacities thanks to efficiently designed internal passages.

Benefits of Energy Conservation:

When you add up the numbers of energy and materials use, they are often staggering. For example, the 600 coal fired plants in the United States will each disperse 10,000 tons of sulfur dioxide, 10,000 tons of nitrogen oxide, and 700 tons of carbon dioxide, in addition to other waste.

No one wants to breathe these pollutants, and society has reached a point where companies have to be wary of their environmental footprint. Having an efficient factory is just half the job, because the neighboring cities/towns will not tolerate environmental contamination.

For this reason, pneumatic valves that use less energy are of huge benefit to factories and buildings all over the world. Not only do they use less energy, which is cheaper for the company, but they have a "transferable benefit" that goes to everyone. The benefit of less pollution, less use of nonrenewable resources, and energy efficiency goes from factories to workers to shareholders to owners and to everyone who breathes the air in that area.

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Cost Savings:

Aside from environmental and Samaritan savings, adding energy efficient valves makes a huge difference to the monthly bill at a factory. Instead of using a valve that needs 6 Watts to work, using an energy efficient valve may only take 1/10th or 2/10th of a Watt.

The same way people buy energy efficient appliances for their home, it is important to get machines that use as little power as possible. Technological advancements have provided us with the gift of highly efficient pneumatic valves. It is now time for all companies to utilize this technology to cut down on their energy costs and preserve the environment for everyone.


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