Vacuum pumps are mechanical devices that enable the removal of air and gas molecules from a sealed area to create an area devoid of air and/or gas. Generally, their purpose is to clean and seal. Vacuum pumps come in wet or dry variants depending on the media being pumped through them.
Where Are Vacuum Punmps Used?
Vacuum Pumps can be used in a wide variety of industries and applications to remove air and gas molecules from a process including the food and beverage industry, semiconductor and electronics industry, pulp and paper, medical, plastics and woodworking to name but a few.
Common examples of vacuum pump applications include vacuum packaging machines, pick and place machines, drying of components, bottle filling and holding and lifting.
Different Types of Vacuum Pump
Pumps which work by mechanically trapping a volume of gas and moving it through the pump are known as positive displacement pumps. Often designed in multiple stages on a single drive shaft, the isolated volume is compressed to a smaller volume at a higher pressure, and finally the compressed gas is expelled to either atmosphere or the next pump. Learn More
Kinetic Transfer Pumps
Kinetic transfer pumps use high speed blades or introduced vapor to direct gas towards the outlet, working on the principle of momentum transfer. These types of pump can achieve high compression ratios at low pressures but typically don’t have sealed volumes. Learn More
Pumps which capture gas molecules on surfaces within the vacuum system are unsurprisingly known as, Capture or Entrapment Pumps. . Capture pumps operate using cryogenic condensation, ionic reaction, or chemical reaction and have no moving parts, therefore creating oil-free vacuum. Learn More
Measuring the Performance of Vacuum Pumps
Pumping speed, that is, the rate at which gas and air can be removed from a volume is the main factor that defines a vacuum pump’s performance. More specifically, pumping speed refers to the volume flow rate of a pump at its inlet, often measured in volume per unit of time.
Vacuum pump is a utility used in a vast array of industrial manufacturing processes including packaging, bottling, drying, degassing, pick and place to name but a few.
Wet or Dry Vacuum Pumps
Vacuum pump technologies are considered either wet (lubricated) or dry (oil free or dry running), depending on whether or not the gas is exposed to oil or water during the compression process.
Wet pumps lubricate and/or sealing themselves using either oil or water; this fluid can contaminate the pumped (swept) gas.
Whereas, Dry vacuum pumps have no fluid in the pumped gas, relying on precise clearances between the rotating and static parts of the pump, dry polymer (PTFE) seals, or a diaphragm to separate the pumping mechanism from the gas and ensure a tight seal.
However, dry are not completely oil-free, as oil or grease is often used in the pump gears and bearings. This is kept separate from the vacuum compression side. Dry pumps reduce the risk of contamination and oil mist. They also have environmental benefits of not requiring the disposal of oils like lubricated pumps.
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