If you design pneumatic systems, chances are you’re always looking for ways to make your designs more energy efficient. An effective technique for conserving compressed air energy is to use high pressure only where it’s needed. A proven method for doing this is to incorporate a dual-pressure regulator into cylinder circuits.
A dual-pressure regulator does just what its name implies: it regulates line pressure at two pressures, not just one. How does this save energy? Because the regulator can provide air at full pressure to act on a load — usually to the cap end of the cylinder to extend the piston rod, then supply lower pressure at the rod end to retract the piston rod. In many cases, full pressure is not required to retract the cylinder, so the dual-pressure regulator provides a second, lower pressure to the rod end of the cylinder to retract the piston rod, thereby saving energy every time the piston rod retracts.
A green solution
Most air cylinder circuits can benefit from having a dual-pressure regulator, but for one reason or another, they don’t get designed in. Lehigh Fluid Power Inc., Lambertville, N.J., just made it easier to incorporate dual-pressure regulators into pneumatic equipment with the introduction of its JHDG Green cylinder.
The Green cylinder contains a dedicated dual-pressure regulator that simplifies piping and installation. Designed to reduce operating expenses and increase profits by reducing energy consumption, the Green series combines Lehigh’s Miracalube piston lubrication system with its Dual Max pressure control regulator and proprietary seals to reduce total cost of ownership and increase cylinder life expectancy.
By reducing the operating pressure when it is not needed, the Green series cylinder operates more efficiently, thus reducing the demand for compressed air. Test results indicate that a typical user can reduce cylinder energy expenses an average of 21% by using a Green series cylinder.
The cylinders are available in bore sizes between 112 to 6 in. and with strokes from 12 to more than 120 in.
The regulator can be mounted on to the rod end or cap end of the cylinder. Rod-end mounting reduces cylinder force and air consumption in the retract direction. Cap-end mounting reduces cylinder force and air consumption in the extend direction. Dual-Max regulators are included with the cylinder but not mounted.