Norgren’s new IVAC cylinder offers OEMs and end users dramatic reduction in energy and operating costs
14 August 2012
Norgren, an international market leader in pneumatic motion and fluid control technologies, has announced the launch of an innovative, high-performance range of cylinders, designed to significantly reduce energy usage and operating costs for OEMs and end users in a range of processing applications.
Conventional pneumatic control involves an arrangement of valves or valve islands, actuators, flow controls and sensors, along with connectors and accessories. In typical applications, up to 13 different components can be required for each actuator function. This complexity presents some intrinsic disadvantages and performance constraints. Following close collaboration with customers to offer a solution which would overcome these shortcomings and satisfy individual requirements, Norgren has developed IVAC (integrated valve and actuator control) - an integrated unit which delivers Engineering Advantage by combining the valve, flow controls, cushioning and sensors in a single actuator package.
IVAC is a weight and space optimised actuator, suitable for a range of bore sizes from 40mm to 80mm, featuring integrated valve and magnetically operated switches for complete actuator control. Able to be retrofitted or integrated within new systems, each unit requires only one pneumatic and one electrical connection, eliminating the need for multiple valve islands, components, tubing and accessories.
This integrated platform lowers costs for users in many ways. Because it is easier to install, maintain and replace a single unit, scheduled and unplanned installation, commissioning and maintenance time and costs are reduced. Less downtime for maintenance also means higher productivity. Meanwhile, eliminating air piping between valves and actuators minimises ‘dead’ volume, reducing air consumption by up to 50 per cent, significantly cutting cost per mm of stroke when compared with conventional pneumatic systems. For a machine operating at two million cycles per year, this results in enough energy savings to pay back the cost of an IVAC product within one year. In addition the IVAC presents improved machine aesthetics. A sharp, uncluttered appearance reveals a more sophisticated look and, for end users, it makes plants look cleaner and more advanced.
A number of options and varieties are available including cleanline versions for industrial cylinders, industrial slave cylinders and easy washdown, helping OEMs comply more easily and cost effectively with hygiene regulations.
OEMs can take advantage of all of these benefits without any mechanical design changes, as IVAC products conform to the latest ISO VDMA dimensions. Its single M12 connection for input and output can be hardwired or plugged into a fieldbus system no matter which protocol is being used.
Richard Bull of Norgren explains: “When designing the IVAC range of cylinders, our key aim was to offer a unique and innovative sustainable energy improvement, via a single-unit solution. The IVAC unit has been devised to provide OEMs and end-users with a high-performance, innovative and high-specification engineered product. It will help cut energy costs, installation costs, and air consumption, while reducing downtime for cleaning and maintenance.
“The design of the integrated actuator is based on maximum modularity to allow all components to be easily assembled and disassembled. Essential factors of the IVAC’s modular concept include a special pilot module which is placed directly at the end of the actuator barrel, and the integration of a pneumatic interface, position sensing, display for status and electrical connection.”
He added: “Keeping contamination at bay is key in many hygiene-critical operations and the IVAC cylinder is already generating considerable interest among potential users, design engineers, production managers and plant maintenance engineers across a whole host of applications where hygiene cannot be compromised. One high-profile organisation which is already enjoying Engineering Advantage through IVAC is global keg processing equipment market leader KHS Kriftel, which has installed IVAC units in its new CombiKeg product line.”
For further information visit www.norgren.com/uk/ivacpr