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1) Introduction

This assignment brief lays out that three circuits are needed to be designed. A pneumatic and a
hydraulic circuit to accomplish two different ways of powering a conveyor system. The third
design is a simplistic pneumatic circuit.
The report will cover several points;
• Circuit designs
• Discussion of what the circuits are made up of and how they operate.
• Compare the differing systems of pneumatic and hydraulic power, in terms of;
o Applicability
o Cost
• Also the implementation of electrical control and its advantages to each circuit.

2) Pneumatic catch plate drive system

In this diagrams current state, the toggle switch not operated, there is no movement in the circuit
and the cylinder is at rest.
If we now consider the toggle switch to be operated,
o The air supply would pass the 3/2 toggle valve, then,
o The air would pass into the retracted position 3/2 roller operated valve.
o In turn this actuates 5/2 control valve
o This then extends the piston.
o Once the piston extends it would then trigger the second 3/2 roller valve.
o Which then pilot operates the 5/2 control valve to retract the cylinder.
o Then the cycle will reciprocate, until the toggle switch is turned off, which would cease
the cycle.
The circuit is more than substantial to fulfil what the brief has asked of it.
3) Component lists

3/2 manual, toggle switch, operated valve – this will hold its position until the switch is released.

2 x 3/2 roller operated spring return valve – these are actuated and released by the cylinders
stroke.

5/2 pilot operated control valve – this is a bi-stable valve which will remain in the last position in
which it was operated.

Double acting cylinder – this is controlled on both strokes, by the 5/2 valve, dependant upon
which position the 5/2 control valve is in to actuate it.

4) Hydraulic driven conveyor

The hydraulic control is another method of solving the drive of a conveyor system.

In the diagrams current state, the 4/3 valve is not operated, so there is no movement in the drive
side of the circuit and the control side of the system is idling.
If we now consider the top toggle switch is pressed,
o The oil would flow through to the drive side of the system in a crossover fashion, which
would run the hydraulic motor in reverse.
If we now consider the lower toggle switch is pressed,
o The oil would flow through to the drive side of the system in a straight-through flow and
return style, which would run the hydraulic motor in forward motion.

In either of the operated states the variable flow controller can alter the conveyors speed, by
allowing more or less oil through as required.
The circuit is more than substantial to fulfil what the brief has asked of it.

5) Component lists

Oil reservoir – the hydraulic reservoir is possibly the main component in all hydraulic systems as
it provides the power source.

Oil filter – the oil in the main body of the circuit needs to be clean so as to prevent clogs/foreign
bodies. The main reason for this filtering is to reduce wear and increase life expectancy of parts.

Electric motor- this drives the pump which moves the fluid around the control side of the circuit.

Pump – the pump is controlled by the above electric motor, and is required to pump the fluid
around the control system.

4/3 position manually operated directional control valve – this valve is used to control the fluid
path to the hydraulic motor

Hydraulic motor – these are low speed and high torque.

Flow control restrictor valve – this controls the amount of oil that gets through the system which
in turn controls the speed of the hydraulic motor.

Pressure relief valve – This valve is a purely safety based consideration. It allows the system to
dump the oil back to the tank if the pressure becomes too great.

6) System comparison
Each of the two systems have there own advantages and disadvantages depending on the
application that they are required for.
If we look first at the systems in a general manner.
Pneumatic systems have several simple advantages which conversely match up with
hydraulic system disadvantages;
o +ive - Pneumatics systems can be implemented in high temperature environments. –ive-
whereas hydraulic systems can pose a fire risk.
o +ive - If a leak occurs in a pneumatic system there is no mess to clean up. –ive - if a
hydraulic system develops a leak it will be very messy.
o +ive - The pneumatic system components are relatively cheap and easy to replace and
maintain. –ive – whereas hydraulics are expensive systems.

As a reverse, hydraulic advantages tend to be the opposite of pneumatic disadvantages;


o +ive – due to oils in-compressible nature, hydraulics are highly variable and accurate.
–ive - Yet due to air being compressible accuracy is a big problem.
o +ive – Safety is a lot better with oil as it has an in-expansive nature, -ive – whereas air
has a highly expansive nature and so explosive type accidents are possible.
o +ive – hydraulics have a high weight to power ratio and typically run at 200-800 bar, -ive
– whereas pneumatics are comparatively weak and only run at around 6 bar.

If we look to compare the systems on cost;


Initial costs of pneumatic systems are, in comparison, relatively cheap but to run they can
prove expensive as you constantly need to produce the compressed air to run the system.
The initial start up costs of hydraulic systems can be quite high due to the amount of
components needed like pumps/motors and pipe-work that can withstand high pressures. The
running costs are lower in these systems as you don’t need to constantly feed the system with
new fluids if they are established correctly to start with.

For the simple purpose laid out looking at the two conveyor systems earlier in the report,
the hydraulic system would be the better system to use. This is as once established the closed
system would rarely need ‘re-fuelling’. The conveyor would also be more variable, accurate and
capable of moving greater loads.
7) Pneumatic Stamping Press

In this diagrams current state, there is no panel in place so the roller switches are not operated,
there is no movement in the circuit and the cylinder is at rest.
If we now consider the Panel is in place and the 2 roller switches are active;
o The air supply would pass the first 3/2 roller valve, then,
o The air would pass into the second 3/2 roller operated valve, which shows part in
position.
o In turn this actuates 5/2 control valve
o This then starts to fill the accumulator through the restrictor valve.
o Once the accumulator is full the 3/2 pilot operated spring return valve is actuated.
o This then allows the cylinder to make its ‘press’ stroke.
o Once the piston extends it would then trigger the inline spring return 3/2 roller valve.
o As there would be no initial air flow through the valve the stamping action would cause a
pressure build up, this would then build until it triggered the pressure release valve.
o This in turn would then allow the air to flow through the 3/2 valve.
o Which then pilot actuates the 5/2 control valve which cause the cylinder to retract.

The circuit is more than substantial to fulfil what the brief has asked of it.
8) Component lists

2 x 3/2 Roller operated valve – this Acts as an AND gate to ensure part positioning.

1 x 3/2 pilot operated spring return valve – this is actuated by the accumulator timing circuit

1 x Accumulator – allows air to take an easy route, to delay actuation, until it fills and then the
fluid force has to take its correct path and actuate the desired component.

1 x Variable Restrictor – allows the path for air to be constricted or opened to increase or
decrease air flow as desired.

The accumulator and variable restrictor together act as a simple timing circuit.

1 x 5/2 pilot operated control valve – this is a bi-stable valve which will remain in the last
position in which it was operated.

1 x Double acting cylinder – this is controlled on both strokes, by the 5/2 valve, dependant upon
which position the 5/2 control valve is in to actuate it.

1 x Variable pressure relief valve – allow pressure to build up to a set level before it will actuate
and release the pressure.

9) Electronic Control

Electronic control greatly increases the possibilities for fluid power control systems. On a simple
scale electronic control would allow the removal of the need for pilot and manual operation. This
can be done by the use of solenoids, limit switches, pressure switches, and numerous other
electronic control devices.
But, with electronic control valves, there needs to be an electronic controller. This comes
in the form of a Programmable Logic Controller (PLC). These are effectively a computer
processor that can read numerous input signals and then as a result, set numerous output signals.
These electronic controls can vastly increase the speed, accuracy and repeatability of
these fluid power control systems.
This could be shown in our ‘Press’ circuit, as the AND gate start, could be removed and
replaced with two electrical proximity sensors. Which would set a PLC input, the plc would read
this and set the, now solenoid controlled, 5/2 valve to operate the system. All of this in
milliseconds.
The timing circuit could also be completely removed and just be replaced by a solenoid
control and a single line of programming in the PLC, which would contain a virtual timer.
PLC and electronic control systems in industry also increase the safety levels in a
circuit/process. This is as because of the ability to check numerous inputs at once, as in jaguar
cars Halewood press shop, the PLC can be checking safety gates, light curtains, press slide
positions and various other safety related issues. All while completing its process.
10 ) References

1. Hydraulic and pneumatic systems notes ENRFF2034 – Actuation systems


2. Jaguar, Halewood, PLC schematics/systems
Kyle McGreevey

ACTUATION SYSTEMS
ENRFF2034

Assignment 2

BEng (Hons) Manufacturing Systems Engineering


Contents

1. Introduction
2. Pneumatic catch plate drive system
3. Component list
4. Hydraulic driven conveyor
5. Component list
6. System comparison
7. Pneumatic stamping press
8. Component list
9. Electronic control
10. References