Understanding the basics of a vacuum conveyor
When we think about conveying and conveying belts, most of us probably picture a mechanical conveyor belt; however, vacuum conveying is widely used across a wide range of industries. What is vacuum conveying and why is it such a good option in so many cases?
What is vacuum conveying?
Vacuum conveying uses the creation of a vacuum to move material from one area of your production process to another. The material is moved suspended in a gas – usually air – from the feed point to the delivery point. A vacuum pump is used to create a vacuum at one end of a sealed tube, the materials are introduced into the other end, and the material flows along the airstream.
Powders and granules are the ideal products to move using vacuum, which is why vacuum conveying is widely used in the food, pharmaceutical and fine chemical industries. Other industries also find it useful, including the chemical, water, plastic and mineral industries.
Powders and granules of up to 50mm are the usual materials to be moved, including salt, flour, sugar, paint powder and pigment, spices, talcum powder, chemical powders, and medicine powders such as paracetamol.
What are the main advantages?
Vacuum conveying can be designed to cross crowded or awkward factory spaces. Material can be conveyed vertically in addition to horizontally, which can be very advantageous when installing new machinery in an existing space; in addition, companies such as http://www.aptech.uk.com/pneumatic-conveying/vacuum-conveying/ can design a custom system for your exact requirements.
Using vacuum conveying is very hygienic when compared with mechanical conveying, as the material is suspended in gas and moved via the air stream or other gas stream through a sealed tube. As a result, there is much less chance of contamination from surfaces or the air, making this method of conveying highly appropriate for sectors such as the pharmaceutical and food industries.
Vacuum conveying prevents contaminating substances getting into the feed; in addition, it prevents contaminating materials getting out! If you are transporting hazardous chemicals or other materials, a vacuum conveyor is often the safest option.
Vacuum conveyors are also quite low maintenance. There are no moving parts in the actual tube; therefore, cleaning and repairs are kept to a minimum and are confined to the beginning and the end of the feed.