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IQS Newsroom Featured Profile: Central Air Compressor

Often referred to as a fourth utility, compressed air has become a vital component in the daily living of millions, playing a prominent role in not only manufacturing plants, but in hospitals, commercial, construction and other such facilities around the world. Since the early 1950s Central Air Compressor has recognized the absolute utility of this ethereal element and maintained a profound respect for the importance of compressed air. Building on their role supplying a full-line of top brand air compressors with an absolute eagerness to provide quality products and services has quickly earned CAC a reputation as an industrial leader. Ever vigilant of changing market trends and consumer requirements, Central Air Compressor retains its top position and dedicated customer base more than a half a century after opening its doors.

Diaphragm Valves: Simply Reliable, Leak-proof Solutions

Diaphragm valves are quite the popular member of the valve family, especially within industrial manufacturing processes. Known for their superior performance as process flow regulation devices, these valves have one key and very simple component that differentiates them from other kinds of check valves and control valves: a flexible membrane from which they get their name. Similar to the human diaphragm, the partition of muscle and connective tissue that separates the chest and abdominal cavities and helps the lungs fill up with air then let it out, the stretchable valve diaphragm is made of elastomers, such as polypropylene and polyethylene, to effectively seal a process flow line either partially or completely as needed in order to regulate the transport of a given process stream. As the human diaphragm contracts and expands, air is inhaled and exhaled. As the valve diaphragm is lifted open or pushed closed, the process stream is allowed to pass or is blocked. The actuation of this ductile barrier makes these process valves capable of precision regulation for liquids, gases and semi-solid slurries.

Serving All Seasons with Centrifugal Pumps

Though just a few short weeks ago the summer sun was high in the sky and the mercury seemed to be rising nearly as high in the thermometer, dips in temperature and disappearing daylight are sure signs that Michigan has tumbled suddenly into autumn. Often overlooked, fall in the Great Lakes State is actually rather lovely. The diverse plant life presents a colorful display unparalleled by even the most stunning summer sunsets, the air is crisp and invigorating and finally the fruit nurtured by the summer months is ripe for the picking. Not just picking, the plethora of Michigan apples are ready for even more popular activities such as pie baking and cider making. Store bought apples are of course available throughout the year, but cider is uniquely fall. This unsweetened, unfiltered beverage may be available only in autumn, but the centrifugal pumps used in its creation thankfully are not so limited.

Fighting the Flames with Flow Meters

Reports by NASA officials indicate that on any given day in the months of July, August and September an estimated 6,000 wildfires scorch lands across the world. While fires are a necessary part of natural processes, they often incur a tremendous deal of damage to both property and health. To combat such effects, many different professionals and organizations join together. At the forefront, city planners and agricultural departments develop irrigation systems to moisten at risk areas. Meteorologists try to predict the likelihood of conditions conducive to fires and the movement of existing fires based on weather patterns. On the front lines firefighters rely on available water sources and accurate information to best combat the flames in the field. Each avenue for fire prediction and prevention relies heavily on a single industrial device known as a flow meter.

Metering Pumps: Delivering Doses of Liquids just how the Doctor, Manufacturer, Technician, Engineer or YOU Order

Ever stop and think how that delightful cappuccino gets from the machine and into your cup without making a huge mess? It’s the little dispensing pump that controls the amount of the delicious liquid ejected from the nozzle each time. This small metering pump comes in handy, especially if you’re like me and ignore the ‘Fill until ¾ full’ sign, pushing the button for short bursts after my cup’s almost full so I’m satisfied with how much I have. The same kind of controlled-volume liquid transfer devices are used in soda fountain pumps. Obviously, the activation for these electronic metering pumps is the push-button switch that we employ when we want our favorite hot or cold drinks.

Keep Fluid Lines in Check with Check Valves

Everyone knows the sound of a heart beat. Children often describe it as making a ‘thump thump’ sound while science teachers and medical professionals use the onomatopoeia ‘lub dub.’ Another possible sound is a whistling or swishing which indicates a possible heart murmur, the result of a heart valve not operating properly. Because the heart beats over 2.5 billion times in an average lifespan, heart murmurs are not uncommon. A heart valve is essentially a check valve, a device that opens and closes to allow the flow of a fluid-in this case, blood-in one direction. Though heart valves are the most critical check valve on earth, these helpful little devices have many uses outside the body.

The Science and Safety Behind Pressure Transducers

Tuesday marked the official start of hurricane season 2010. While there are no major storms on radar just yet, scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey and independent agencies alike have no doubt already begun to deploy advanced equipment to help them better track, predict, gauge and understand these tropical surges. From a safe distance pressure transducers attached to powerful and precise sensors can send real-time information back to researchers. This information is invaluable as a storm approaches. Employing devices such as pressure transmitters to relay this data in past decades has provided a wealth of information on hurricanes, tornados and other natural disasters that allow emergency services to better prepare for and restore order after a storm.

Hydraulic Valves Seal the Deal for Fuel-Economy

This summer the price of a gallon of gas is expected to reach up into the $3.00 to 3.50 range. While this pales in comparison to the over $4.00 per gallon prices of last summer, it is still a significant increase that keeps fuel-economy at the forefront of the average car owner’s mind. To save on gas, many turn to public transportation. With city budgets dwindling, however, fuel-economy and vehicle efficiency is still of the utmost importance. Engineers and researchers have designed numerous studies and projects around this point and come up with several methods to improve the efficiency of mass transit and domestic vehicles alike. One of the simplest and most practical solutions is the introduction and installation of advanced hydraulic valves into new and pre-existing internal combustion engines popular in both gasoline and diesel vehicles.

The Pressure is On for Pressure Switches

Nearly three weeks after a massive oil rig exploded in the Gulf Coast, the cast off oil has begun to reach the coastline. The explosion and ensuing fire claimed the lives of 11 workers. As if this loss were not great enough, the continuous flow of oil leaking from the damaged rig will no doubt have a profound impact on wildlife as well as thousands if not millions of people living and working in that area. While we may never know the cause of the explosion, it is evident that shut off switch failure is responsible for the enormous oil spill that so threatens the coastline. Although containment and clean up are at the moment priorities, both BP and the federal government are searching for some explanation behind this disaster. One avenue to explore is the role pressure switches may have played.

Thank Guericke for Vacuum Pumps

In the mid 1600s, a German mayor of a small town performed a trick using 2 metal half-spheres and a team of sixteen horses to entertain some houseguests. It was the first time he put his invention-a piston and air gun cylinder with two-way flaps designed to pull air out of whatever vessel it was connected to-to use in front of other people. The mayor, named Otto von Guericke, joined the two copper hemispheres together and pumped the air out using his contraption. He then harnessed eight horses to each half. The result? An astonished audience, completely inseparable copper hemispheres and the very first demonstration of a vacuum pump. It didn’t take long for this trick to gain popularity, and Guericke began performing in the German court with more and more horses. The power of a vacuum quickly caught the eye of scientists, who began using vacuum pumps to study properties of gasses and electricity. Today, you’d be hard pressed to find a single industrial factory or experimentation facility that doesn’t use a vacuum pump.

The Basics of Proper Pressure Gauge Selection

To all extreme feminists out there, I apologize, but I readily admit that there are some things I would rather just have a man do for me. I’m all about being an independent woman making a living and supporting myself; however, when it comes to things mechanical or electrical…that’s just what they are to me – thingies. Say I encounter a pressure gauge in real life: I wouldn’t give much thought to the thingy. I’m good just as long as my tires have the right pressure and my doctor says I have healthy blood pressure. I did, however, discover some tips for selecting pressure gauges.

Clarifying the Different Types of Valves-Ball, Globe, Gate and Butterfly

Valves are simple machines that are used to regulate the flow of liquid by obstructing the pipe or passageway. They’re found anywhere liquids flow, including indoor plumbing systems-more specifically, your faucet. When you turn the sink handle, out comes water. Turn it back, and it stops flowing. This is the basic job of a valve-often taken for granted, since they are so simple and common, but what would we do without them? Probably pay hefty water bills each month. They’ve been in use for thousands of years, and are one of the most useful mechanical inventions of all time. Valves are divided into two families-the stop valves, which provide an on, off and partially on setting, and check valves, which only restrict the flow of liquid in one direction.

Dynamic Seals Help Ease Stress in Hydraulic and Pneumatic Systems

In the most general terms, the function of any kind of seal is to block the passage of liquids or gases. Rubber seals can be either static or dynamic. A static seal does not move and simply contains pressure or maintains a vacuum. The purpose of dynamic seals, however, is to reciprocate a give-and-take with mechanical motion, like for pistons and cylinders or rotating shafts. Mechanical seals are essential components of hydraulic and pneumatic systems, in which constantly moving mechanisms can be under extreme stress. Along with preventing leakage and protecting against contaminants, the mechanical seal helps maintain pressure levels in high temperature, pressure and speed applications.

Solenoid Valves Offer ‘Brains’ for Gas & Liquid Flow Control

Equipping a pneumatic or hydraulic valve with a solenoid coil adds a higher level of control to air or fluid flow regulation. Unlike regular valves that rely on changes in gas or fluid pressure to open or close, solenoid valves are operated electromechanically with a magnetized solenoid coil that responds to targeted electrical charges for precise flow control. Because of the ability to be controlled remotely and cued by sensors or hysteresis (device memory), the solenoid valve is an intelligent gadget.

How Clean is the Air You’re Breathing Right Now?

Strides have been made in outdoor smog control since the Environmental Protection Agency was formed and the first Clean Air Act was passed under President Nixon, and then the Clean Air Act Amendments under the first President Bush. There is definitely room for improvement in reducing emissions, as many U.S. communities are still trying to catch up to air purity regulations. Air pollution control equipment exists to reduce emissions into the atmosphere, and air filters and filtration systems exist for indoor air quality. However, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America’s website, there are no national health standards for air filter performance because the Federal government has concluded that there is not yet enough data on the link between air filtration and actual health improvement.

Will Harnessing Compressed Air Power Mean Big Business for Manufacturers?

Compressed air equals power, so shouldn’t we be able to use it as the answer for some of our alternative energy and fuel? President Obama has made renewable energy development a top priority on his agenda. He believes it’s imperative that the United States stops relying on foreign sources and works to become the leading exporter of renewable energy. So what kind of possibilities does the power of compressed air hold? Well, foreign auto makers have already made leaps and bounds in getting compressed-air powered vehicles ready for the market, and I think American automakers need to invest their efforts in these alternative fuel, zero-emission ‘clean cars’…

High Performance Diaphragms and Their Use in Pumping Abrasive and Dense Slurries

Metering pumps have long been known for their accuracy and reliability to provide precise dosing of liquids to a process stream. This understanding was generally limited to homogeneous fluids or liquids under 500 cps. The use of a high performance diaphragm can boost the cps capable of being pumps exceeding 7,000 cps (depending on pump size) and handle large solids content. This has significant application where heavy materials, earth materials or conveyance of other solids bearing fluids is required. This discussion consolidates the selection and application of high performance diaphragms in these specialized applications…

Compressed Air Energy Savings: Thermal Mass Flowmeters Find Wasted Cash

In this era of rising energy costs and global competitiveness, compressed air waste in facilities can be a major financial drain to the bottom line. Air may be free, but compressed air certainly isn’t. According to Cary Carlisle, an expert compressed air auditor and seasoned technician from Air Compressor Supply, Inc. (ACS), over a 10-year period, electricity costs make up 76 percent of a factory’s operating costs…