Compressors can be used for a broad range of applications. Vacuum pumps are complex and frequently require specially designed solutions. Pneumofore specializes in compressor and vacuum pump engineering and develops compressed air and vacuum solutions for numbers of industries, including:
[select an application below]
Drying by vacuum is faster and cheaper with pumps designed to evacuate water vapor. Pneumofore provides ready-to-use systems even for mobile operation on trucks or containers.
In the 90’s, only liquid ring vacuum pumps were known to create vacuum for pipeline drying purpose. As the evacuated air contained water vapor, the cooling liquid was usually water. But the performance of liquid ring vacuum pumps strongly depends on the sealant’s (water) temperature. With gas available in rather hot or below 0°C countries, water sealed pumps failed to fully satisfy the requirements of pipeline drying companies. The complexity of the Generator – Liquid Ring Vacuum Pump – Cooling Water Tower circuit was further complicated by their replacement with ultra-dry compressed air systems which required much higher energy consumption due to the compressor size and the multi-stage drying systems with chillers. In the end , they were worse than the liquid ring vacuum pumps in energy terms. At that time, the environmental awareness of energy considerations was not the priority of companies in the worldwide petrochemical industry. In 2006, the largest company in this sector, Gazprom, found the solution by simply installing one generator and two Pnuemofore UV50 vacuum pumps on a truck trailer: a completely air cooled vacuum system, based on the exclusive performance of the UV pumps in evacuating large water vapor quantities. Furthermore, the drying speeds were further improved by installing additional (roots) stages on the UV H backing pumps, as done by BJ Services and Trans-Asia Pipeline Services.
Drying / Degassing
Simple energy calculations motivate the use of vacuum, rather than heat, for drying wet components. Valid for materials such as wood, metal, pulp and paper, polymers and more.
In nature, the drying process takes place in the sun. This application of heat has been optimized in the last centuries with ovens. Vacuum evacuates humidity as well and offers several advantages. Typical large drying processes arise in the production of bricks and tiles, where vacuum offers shorter drying times with much less energy usage compared to heat drying [see the video Vacuum Pumps for Bricks Production] Where metal parts have been washed and require drying, vacuum may also be used [see the case study Brakes India]. Another application is the drying of polyester chips, which may require a multi stage vacuum system to reach low dew points [see the case study Polyester Chips in India]. Food is also dried in processes like freeze drying, as the minor water content of fruit and vegetables provides shelf longevity. The drying of pipelines is described in the dedicated section. Degassing is done in Italian pasta production as well as in brick factories. Extruders mix components for a homogeneous structure, which is later backed. The presence of water in the dough has to be avoided because water turns into vapor with a larger volume and it can create cracks and or change the taste of pasta. Thus vacuum is applied, with precise mbar(a) and m3/h dosing. Polyester chips must be packed in the shortest possible time with low residual humidity, as done with up to 3 stage vacuum systems. Vacuum is usually applied slowly, otherwise the product could break as happens when wood is dried with excessive speed. Other materials like leather or all sorts of aggressive chemicals contain dangerous elements, which could contaminate the vacuum pump, thus needs to be protected accordingly. More simple is the vacuum drying of metal components right after the washing, as alternative to heat, which requires more power, more time and causes temperature dependent deformation. Also pipelines are dried before their installation and operation.
Vacuum cooling of fresh food and selected cooked solid food semiproducts. Cleaning of animal interiors in slaughterhouses. Higher bread quality and bakeries economy with vacuum chamber.
The industrialization of food processing requires more and more vacuum as an energy form. Our pumps succeed in evacuate water vapor in pasta factories, even in Iran, with air cooling only. Tumblers to soften meat at the Kerry Food and Hilton Food plants in Ireland also use reliable and durable Pneumofore vacuum systems. In recent years, we observed a growth of vacuum chambers for baking bread or simply for the storage of perishable food like vegetables or fish. After excessive repair expenses caused by alternative processeses or small vane pumps, and with the rising importance of shelf-life, taste and environmental factors, our customers can finally meet their production needs with bespoke, centralized Pneumofore’s vacuum and compressed air system solutions. See dedicated section for pasta and food packaging.
Case Studies: Caillor in France
To simulate the environment of airplanes at different altitudes, with considerable variations of pressure, achieved by variable speed drives.
The simulation of altitude for airplanes requires a vacuum system of varying the absolute pressure, sometimes with steep gradients. This application differs herewith from most other processes, as vacuum is not required constantly and continuously. The evacuated media is pure air, with no contaminants. The size of airplanes and their consequent space requirements in testing facilities demand vacuum systems with high capacity pressure-variation capability. A simple power consumption analysis demonstrates Pneumofore’s advantages, with the UV pumps showing double efficiency compared to liquid ring vacuum pumps. The easy air cooling of UV pumps, the capacity of 3.240 m3/h for each UV50 and their variable speed option represent the state-of-art in rotary vane technology, as done by Pneumofore only. These test facilities run for only a few hours per month and with the purchase of the vacuum system there is a simple-to-manage installation with minimal power usage. Based on these criteria, Pneumofore successfully collaborated with prestigious aviation companies like Honeywell, Airbus and the Fraunhofer Institute.
Case Studies: Airbus
Ceramics, Bricks and Tiles
To eliminate water traces in the dough before entering the oven, for a homogeneous consistency and a fine surface. Also for ultra hard, top quality Italian ceramics.
In the absence of a dedicated filtration system, the presence of solid silicate and clay particles in the suction of the vacuum pumps causes the slow erosion of all materials. This was served by liquid ring vacuum pumps. But the degassing process must be continuous at a specific vacuum level, the quality of tiles and bricks must be mantained while the press is hot: this is achieved with UV pumps in several bricks plants. We offer fully engineered vacuum solutions with air cooling, with less power usage, less noise and without continuous repair of the pump’s cylinder.
Less humidity often means a longer shelf-life. Vacuum packed meat with dual pressure systems. Moving of packaging material or food in serial, industrial scale.
In the field of food packaging different vacuum levels for higher packaging speed are needed. Specific humidity and vacuum values must remain constant with air as the only cooling medium. Small on-board vacuum pumps are often used in the food packaging industry. However, as soon as the size of production is large enough to allow the centralization of vacuum, Pneumofore offers the opportunity to increase the vacuum level using multiple stages. This allows longer shelf life of products and sensibly improves the cold room operators’ working ambient. Several on-board vacuum pumps create running noise, oil mist and low performance. These deficiencies can be resolved with the centralization of the vacuum pump system. Moreover, reduced power consumption and increased packaging speed are important features of UV installations on this field. This criteria allows operational success throughout the four seasons 24 hours for 365 days a year.
Case Studies: HKScan
Vacuum is found in several manufacturing steps: a clean and continuous use of large, centralized systems with air cooled UV pumps.
A clean application with continuous operation, usually with several 1.000 m3/h capacity, cans and tins production represents a key market for Pneumofore UV pumps. After replacing liquid ring and screw pumps in existing plants for decades, today our units are considered already in the preliminary specification phase of “green field” projects. The success is based on the pumps consistent semplicity and trouble-free operation. The “Return of Investment” and “Life Cycle Cost” calculations are evidenced by the following factors: the air cooling of UV pumps avoids problematic cooling water circuits; the simplicity of the rotary vane air-end allows simple overhauling; the ease of maintenance and rare service requirements.
Vacuum systems for glassworks to improve the moulding at the IS machines in terms of speed and precision. Air cooled solutions, worldwide expertise and references.
The industrialization of food distribution was based on glass, as a hygienic reusable container material. Hollow glass is being replaced lately by new, mostly synthetic materials but keeps its key position in prestigious liquids packaging like wine, beer, juice, jam etc. The moulding process of glass containers is the core application of Pneumofore UV vacuum pumps. In this tough round-the-clock heavy-duty application, Pneumofore managed to gain experience over more than 50 years. This positions our company as a worldwide leader of vacuum pump systems for IS machines. The presence of lubricants in the IS machine requires specific filtration solutions. Our service includes the system calculation and layout to guarantee a specific vacuum level. There are Variable Speed options to minimize power consumption, from 35 to 60 Hz, also up to 32.400 m3/h capacity.
Vacuum for degassing, shortly before shaping, in the majority of Italian pasta factories. Good mood with tasty pastasciutta. Also for maccaroni in Iran using air cooled UV pumps.
The challenge varies for each pasta factory and that is where Pneumofore as a bespoke solution provider succeeds, due to the tailored design of the entire vacuum pump system instead of the simple supply of standard vacuum pumps. Pasta requires the perfect amount of vacuum to improve the quality of the final product. With a 100 mbar(a) vacuum level the humidity in the mixture is sucked out but this needs to be done with a perfect balance of mixture amount and vacuum amount. The vacuum pump system must operate 24 hours a day 365 days a year, which makes durability and reliability of the vacuum pump system very critical due to the losses of an eventual stop of the machines. The filtration system, the constant vacuum requirements and the variable capacity requests as well as, above all, the perfect taste and perception of pasta make Pneumofore a very important player in the field of industrial vacuum pump systems for Italian pasta factories.
Low Life Cycle Cost and Short Return of Investment also mean Less Environmental Pollution. Our Mission is to avoid Waste of Energy, Material and Water. Our Key since 1923.
Pneumofore does not clean up the dirt, it works right at the source, where pollution is born. With 35% of the energy used by the world’s industry spent for Air Compressors and Vacuum Pumps, we contribute heavily by producing such machines with higher performance capabilities, less kW / HP but also with exemplary durability and reliability. We hold a bright light in a foggy market and declare true technical data, invest in R&D to improve efficiency, succeed with the lowest specific power consumption of Air Compressors and Vacuum Pumps, we offer air cooling where competitors use water. These and more features of our machines, which are designed to create the minimal impact on our planet, stay in clear contradiction with today’s standard business philosophy of fast money. During almost 100 years of experience, it has not been rare to loose customers due to our high selling price, but switching to screw or liquid ring technology caused them considerably higher Operating Costs by consuming more power, which corresponds also to the heavier environmental pollution. And they returned to us, since the Pneumofore machine was still running after decades, while other technologies or copies of our’s, simply failed in terms of Life Cycle Cost and Peace of Mind. Being the production process of our machines also an energy-intensive activity, we qualified for the environmental ISO14000 certification in 2002 and we overhaul our machines again and again, up to 50 years old machines continue to return to our factory for simple check or repair. Like this we work against the consume-oriented, fast growing industrial evolution, frequently motivated by shareholders full of profit expectations. As a multi-generational family owned company, our satisfaction surely depends on the success in financial terms, but is strongly influenced by sane engineering ethnics. Pneumofore sales are frequently driven by Return of Investment Calculation when replacing other, obsolete technologies. The rising costs of electrical power and water works to our advantage, customers easily get the green light to invest in Pneumofore machines with ROI values of 18 months or less. “Prima di essere ingegneri voi siete uomini” by De Sactis in 1858 on the famous white marble sculpture at the Polytechnikum of Zurich, Switzerland, where the 3 generations of Swiss engineers, owners of Pneumofore, have been educated in the last 100 years.
Hightech IT production facilities install UV pumps for almost secret processes in Europe and Asia.
A domain of high vacuum engineering, with turbomolecular and diffusion dry-pumps. However, these steps in production are executed in batches, on the spot, in limited areas. Also because vacuum levels of 10E-10 mbar(a) are difficult to contain and maintain in large volumes. Pneumofore manages the rough vacuum, we pump from ambient pressure of 1013 mbar(a) down to 0,5 mbar(a) [29,9 inHg V], other companies make the pumps to go lower in residual pressure. With ultra-high-tech know how for the latest generation of IT processors, sometimes basic notions of simple rough-vacuum engineering are considered less or almost neglected. The success in Asia and Europe is mainly due to the trouble free operation, simple maintenance and total reliability, supported by extended total warranties of 5 years of UV pumps. With our aluminium vanes being an integral, non-consumable part of the Rotary Vane Air End and with Pneumofore guarantees, which cover both efficiency and functionality, our positing in this constantly evolving market is secure amd growing.
Case Studies: Infineon
Dedicated, tailored vacuum systems for bottling processes of liquids with exclusive 100% air cooling. To eliminate viral contamination of water in cooling towers.
In the industry of food processing, strict food production regulations can potentially halt the entire production or, in the very least, cause enormous fines and possibly high costs for treating cooling liquid waste. New laws requiring lower tolerance for bacterial contamination can easily create problems for beer bottling plants using liquid ring pumps, often seen in this sector. This means that environmental and bacterial problems must be properly managed. Pneumofore tackles such problems with a special design based on the advantages of its existing vacuum pump technology. With vacuum, the bottling of beer allows increased productivity but exposes the vacuum pumps to suction of bioactive liquids, such as beer. In the beer bottling process UV pumps are operating to avoid the contamination of the cooling water used for liquid ring vacuum pumps. Pneumofore was a hot candidate for the ‘Danish engineers Products Price 2005’ because of the results of halving the installed power and elimination of troubles with cooling water at a Danish brewery.
Case Studies: Tuborg
Vacuum is used for the perfect and fast surface coating of the wiring. From serial, industrial scale motor production to single, large size transformers.
Pneumofore is strongly committed to developing new processes used in insulating electrical windings and capacitors for medium and high-voltage devices (motors, transformers, generators etc.). Vacuum Pressure Impregnation (VPI) is the only process that can guarantee the perfect electrical insulation for high-voltage applications and as well as several benefits accruing from dielectric materials and special resins or oils, constant vacuum level is important to mantain good surface treatment all year long.
Depending on reactor size it is important to achieve high pumping speed and low pressure levels in order to optimize the productivity. Pneumofore has already attained successful references in this field and is involved in projects for vacuum centralization of several autoclaves.
Case Studies: Sicme Motori
Pick & Place
To move and pack without contamination in clean rooms with centralized vacuum systems to speed up crucial and precise production steps.
Ferrero, an italian chocolate producer with plants in Italy, Belgium and Argentina, chose Pneumofore to provide vacuum solutions for multiple applications, from drying to transportation or pick and place during the box packaging phase. With a centralized vacuum solution, a higher production speed can be achieved. Several UV vacuum pumps provide 24/7 vacuum supply. However, Pick & Place is found in a huge number of industries, especially where a serial production requires an automated and fast moving of product or packaging, as found also in food, medical, containers and electronics production sites. Our machines installed at Becton Dickinson in UK meet the Pick & Place process within a medical factory, and the UV pumps at Seagate in Asia move little screws for Hard Disk assembly.
Many white balls grow with vapor in limited volumes using pentane and vacuum. EPS insulates temperature and absorbs mechanical pressure.
Besides thermoforming, another synthetic material application is the moulding of EPS or polystyrene. These materials also allow thermal insulation, e.g. for fresh fish boxes: another use of vacuum is for industrial production of food containers, which must respect all civil food regulations and perform as environmentally friendly as possible. The relevant presence of vapour during the EPS moulding process represents a difficult task for every vacuum pump manufacturer. In this production vacuum is needed in order to mould the EPS into the desired shape. The vacuum pump system has to be designed to satisfy all manufacturing needs like high material density, low relative humidity and fast moulding speed.
Pharma / Medical
Various applications from medicine production, to pick & place and packaging processes.
The pharmaceutical industry uses vacuum for specific processes in medicine production and in the final stage of packaging. Vacuum, the absence of air, supports ‘clean’ requirements, where contamination y volatile impurities is avoided. Access to the production area in Pharmaceutical Industries is limited, we rarely know about improvements regarding constant vacuum level or lower absolute residual pressure, which might speed up or simplify specific steps. When we replace liquid ring or screw pumps with our rotary vane technology, our installations are based on Return of Investment calculations and we are perfectly aligned with the strict standards of precision and reliability requirements of the Vacuum System. UV pumps are also appreciated in such continuous applications for their clean exhaust, as happened at Becton Dickinson in Ireland, substituting rotary screw pumps. In Belarus, the air-cooling and strongly reduced power consumption of UV pumps, combined with our vacuum system engineering competence, allowed considerable savings compared to the previous liquid ring system. Lifescan, in Scotland, moved away from costly repair and spares of ‘compact vane pumps’ by installing a Pneumofore system, which offers industrial values of durability with easier Maintenance.
Case Studies: Borisovmed in Belarus
Size and weight of grains require sometimes more vacuum than Side Channel Blowers can perform. Exact vacuum for perfect dosing.
A wide range of materials can be moved with pneumatic conveying. But cement differs from polymer granulate or cereals, in specific weight, fragility, hardness, etc. thus pipe sizes and materials are calculated accordingly. When moving products with vacuum, rather than pressure, a risk is always present by the potential contamination of the pumps, which requires tailored filtration systems.
The appearance of plastic, metal objects or textures changes by covering their surface with thin layers, using multi-stage vacuum systems. Usually tailored solutions for shorter deposition times.
Surface coating applications are mostly related to different pumping stages required to reach very high vacuum levels. The vacuum chain does not admit weak rings and the trouble-free primary evacuation step is crucial to guarantee constant and high ultimate pressures. Pneumofore Rotary Vane technology avoids efficiency loss and minimizes maintenance operation for enduring stable performances. Vacuum coating processes ranging from paper, polymeric and glass substrate metallization to surface and heat treatment of metal tools require very reliable vacuum pumps. Our aim is to combine current features of UV series vacuum pumps with on-going product developments in order to meet all customer needs. Glass coating systems count many vacuum chambers that can be connected to the same rough vacuum system by reducing operational costs and time of evacuation. Additional vacuum pumps of smaller size for higher vacuum levels are near the single chambers.