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Pneumatics
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"Pneumatic" redirects here. For the highest order of humans in Gnosticism, see Pneumatic
(Gnosticism).
Pneumatics is a section of technology that
deals with the study and application of
pressurized gas to produce mechanical
motion.
Pneumatic systems are used extensively in
industry, and factories are commonly
plumbed with compressed air or compressed
inert gases. This is because a centrally
located and electrically powered compressor
that powers cylinders and other pneumatic
devices through solenoid valves can often
provide motive power in a cheaper, safer,
more flexible, and more reliable way than a
large number of electric motors and
actuators.

Pneumatics also has applications in dentistry, construction, mining, and other areas.

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Preserved Porter Locomotive Company No. 3290 of


1923.

Contents [hide]
1 Examples of pneumatic systems and components
2 Gases used in pneumatic systems
3 Comparison to hydraulics
3.1 Advantages of pneumatics
3.2 Advantages of hydraulics
4 Pneumatic logic
5 See also
6 References
7 External links

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Examples of pneumatic systems and components


Air brakes on buses and trucks

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Air brakes on trains


Air compressors
Air engines for pneumatically powered
vehicles
Barostat systems used in
Neurogastroenterology and for
researching electricity

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Pneumatics - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Cable jetting, a way to install cables in


ducts
Compressed-air engine and compressedair vehicles

Gas-operated reloading

Trke

Pneumatic circuit.

Holman Projector, a pneumatic antiaircraft weapon

Winaray
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HVAC control systems


Inflatable structures
Lego pneumatics can be used to build pneumatic models
Exercise machines
Pipe organs:
Electro-pneumatic action
Tubular-pneumatic action
Pneumatic actuator
Pneumatic air guns
Pneumatic bladder
Pneumatic cylinder
Pneumatic Launchers, a type of spud gun
Pneumatic mail systems
Pneumatic motor
Pneumatic tire
Pneumatic tools:
Jackhammer used by road workers
Pneumatic nailgun
Pressure regulator
Pressure sensor
Pressure switch
Vacuum pump

Gases used in pneumatic systems

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Pneumatic systems in fixed installations, such as factories, use compressed air because a
sustainable supply can be made by compressing atmospheric air. The air usually has moisture
removed, and a small quantity of oil is added at the compressor to prevent corrosion and lubricate
mechanical components.
Factory-plumbed pneumatic-power users need not worry about poisonous leakage, as the gas is
usually just air. Smaller or stand-alone systems can use other compressed gases that present an
asphyxiation hazard, such as nitrogenoften referred to as OFN (oxygen-free nitrogen) when
supplied in cylinders.
Any compressed gas other than air is an asphyxiation hazardincluding nitrogen, which makes up

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Pneumatics - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

78% of air. Compressed oxygen (approx. 21% of air) would not asphyxiate, but is not used in
pneumatically-powered devices because it is a fire hazard, more expensive, and offers no
performance advantage over air.
Portable pneumatic tools and small vehicles, such as Robot Wars machines and other hobbyist
applications are often powered by compressed carbon dioxide, because containers designed to hold it
such as soda stream canisters and fire extinguishers are readily available, and the phase change
between liquid and gas makes it possible to obtain a larger volume of compressed gas from a lighter
container than compressed air requires. Carbon dioxide is an asphyxiant and can be a freezing
hazard if vented improperly.

Comparison to hydraulics

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Both pneumatics and hydraulics are applications of fluid power. Pneumatics uses an easily
compressible gas such as air or a suitable pure gaswhile hydraulics uses relatively incompressible
liquid media such as oil. Most industrial pneumatic applications use pressures of about 80 to 100
pounds per square inch (550 to 690 kPa). Hydraulics applications commonly use from 1,000 to 5,000
psi (6.9 to 34 MPa), but specialized applications may exceed 10,000psi (69MPa).

Advantages of pneumatics

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Simplicity of design and controlMachines are easily designed using standard cylinders and
other components, and operate via simple on-off control.
ReliabilityPneumatic systems generally have long operating lives and require little maintenance.
Because gas is compressible, Equipment is less subject to shock damage. Gas absorbs
excessive force, whereas fluid in hydraulics directly transfers force. Compressed gas can be
stored, so machines still run for a while if electrical power is lost.
SafetyThere is a very low chance of fire compared to hydraulic oil. Machines are usually
overload safe.

Advantages of hydraulics

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Liquid (as a gas is also a 'fluid') does not absorb any of the supplied energy.
Capable of moving much higher loads and providing much higher forces due to the
incompressibility.
The hydraulic working fluid is basically incompressible, leading to a minimum of spring action.
When hydraulic fluid flow is stopped, the slightest motion of the load releases the pressure on the
load; there is no need to "bleed off" pressurized air to release the pressure on the load.

Pneumatic logic

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Further information: Pneumatic circuit


Pneumatic logic systems (sometimes called air logic control) are often used to control industrial
processes, consisting of primary logic units such as:
And Units
Or Units
'Relay or Booster' Units
Latching Units
'Timer' Units
Sorteberg relay
Fluidics amplifiers with no moving parts other than the air itself
Pneumatic logic is a reliable and functional control method for industrial processes. In recent years,
these systems have largely been replaced by analog electronic or digital control systems in new

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Pneumatics - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

installations because of the smaller size, lower cost, greater precision, and more powerful features of
digital controls. Many pneumatic devices are still used in processes, however, where the advantages
of digital controls are outweighed by such considerations as:
The cost of upgrading an entire system from pneumatic to digital control is prohibitive
Safety might be compromised (e.g., potential sparks near explosive gases)
Compressed air is the most viable energy source available [1]

See also

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Compressed air
Ozone cracking
Polymer degradation
Pneudraulics
Pneumatics Automation

References

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1. ^ KMC Controls. "Air Today, Digital Tomorrow: Pneumatic to BAS Conversions"


2013.

. Retrieved 8 April

Compressed Air Operations Manual, ISBN 0-07-147526-5, McGraw Hill Book Company

External links

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Four Ways to Boost Pneumatic Efficiency


Look up pneumatics in
Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

Pneumatic Symbols DWG/DXF


Categories: Pneumatics

This page was last modified on 10 June 2013 at 05:04.


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