Pneumatic Actuators that Handle Harsh Conditions Well
Harsh operating conditions are not unusual in manufacturing and other industrial environments. Nonetheless, equipment must function reliably and well to keep processes moving along. Since that movement frequently involves pneumatic actuators, it is critical to choose products that are made to withstand whatever environmental challenges are present. Often, stainless steel cylinders are the best choice.
Components for Outdoor and Indoor Harsh Environments
Some environments are just naturally unwelcoming. Outdoors, equipment may have to endure dirt, thick dust, water or high humidity, and corrosive elements such as salt or chemicals used in a particular manufacturing process (battery assembly, for example). Ongoing exposure to corrosive chemicals, particulates, or moisture can ultimately destroy the rod and rod seal or other components of a pneumatic actuator.
Indoors, food and beverage processing and packaging environments are prone to bacterial contamination. Also, if actuators and other moving parts are not perfectly sealed, leaking fluid can contaminate the product.
Some industrial environments are designed to remain meticulously clean—food and beverage, as already noted, but also pharmaceuticals, medical device manufacturing, and others. In order to maintain that strict sanitation, equipment is subjected to frequent washdowns. The water pressure is very high, and often the chemicals used for cleaning are caustic.
There are types of pneumatic actuators that are not only versatile but designed to stand up to all kinds of harsh conditions.
- MAGTEC® rodless magnetically coupled cylinders operate within an entirely closed body and have internal main pressure seals, so there is no risk of contamination, outward or inward. That makes MAGTEC cylinders ideal for food processing and similar applications. In addition, these actuators offer long stroke lengths.
- PNEU-SA® actuators are an enclosed cable-type design that also uses internal main pressure seals. The piston and carrier connector ride in separate chambers, connected by the cables. The piston chamber is never exposed to the operating environment, so there is no risk of contamination. PNEU-SA cylinders are available in multiple configurations.
Stainless Steel Pneumatic Actuators Further Support Sanitation
The Food and Drug Administration and the US Department of Agriculture both require the use of stainless steel for equipment in food or beverage environments, from farms to packaging. But that’s not the only industry or advantage of using stainless steel pneumatic actuators.
So why choose stainless steel?
- It is harder than other materials, so it’s more durable. It won’t crack or pit, corrode or rust despite exposure to abrasive, harsh chemicals, etc. That makes stainless steel longer-lasting.
- It is highly heat-resistant.
- It is ideal for industrial design that eliminates corners or crevices where bacteria or dirt could become trapped. This also makes stainless steel easier to clean.
- ISO-certified actuators are available in a stainless steel option as well.
Watch the video below to learn more about industries and applications for stainless steel components, including pneumatic actuators.
At W.C. Branham, our goal is always to create solutions that fit your specs and goals. Just give us a call at 715.230.3894 or drop us an email.