The guidance, available for free download at www.festo.co.uk/proportionalvalvewhitepaper, looks at how proportional valves can be used as an alternative to regulating valves and flow meters in process automation plants, where the pressure and flow of gases are tightly controlled. Inert gas systems, for example, are used to prevent the atmosphere in reactors and process tanks in a plant from coming into the explosive range.
Other applications include the transfer of materials between process tanks and filling, frequently found in the food and drink industry. To control these functions, dedicated lines with regulating valves and flow meters are generally used.
“Some process automation applications require valves and flow meters for each pressure and gas level, which can cost anywhere between £2,000 and £7,000,” says Steve Sands, product manager at Festo. “This whitepaper proposes that by using proportional valve technology in a closed-loop system instead, significant benefits can be realised in addition to lower installation costs.”
With proportional-valves, plant managers can control and adjust the pressure and flow levels of inert gases more accurately.