September 27, 2018
Ultrasonic cleaning transducers convert the high-frequency electric signal of an ultrasonic cleaning system to sound waves in the cleaning solution. These systems are made up of an ultrasonic generator, a transducer and a tank to hold the cleaning solution. Low frequencies from 20 kHz to about 160 kHz are used for cleaning heavy, hard to clean contamination from robust parts while higher frequencies up to 2MHz are used for gentle cleaning of delicate parts.
The ultrasonic generator produces an electric signal whose voltage varies at the selected ultrasonic frequency. When the voltage is applied to piezoelectric crystals within Kaijo’s transducers, the crystals change shape slightly. As the voltage rises and falls, the crystals lengthen and shorten. As a result, the metal plate attached to the crystals vibrates in tune with the ultrasonic frequency. When the transducer is immersed in the cleaning solution, the vibration of the metal plate produces the ultrasonic waves.
Ultrasonic Cleaning Transducer Features
Ultrasonic transducers have to generate an equal and consistent distribution of sound waves in the cleaning solution while withstanding the vibrations, temperature and cleaning action of the ultrasonic cleaning system. The ultrasonic sound waves create high-energy cavitation bubbles in the cleaning solution, and while these bubbles are responsible for the cleaning action, they can also eat away at materials that are not properly selected. The cleaning solution may contain mild solvents and can be heated for faster cleaning. The ultrasonic transducers have to operate reliably in this environment.
The housing of Kaijo ultrasonic cleaning transducers is made of 316L polished stainless steel so the transducers are not affected by the cleaning solution and can withstand the potential pitting action of the cavitation bubbles. They are hermetically sealed and can operate in cleaning solutions at up to 100 degrees Centigrade. The lower frequency range transducers are available at 600 W and 1200 W while the higher frequency units can handle up to 1200 W. The relatively high power ratings ensure that all parts of the cleaning solution tank receive an even level of ultrasonic waves.
Types of Ultrasonic Cleaning Transducers
Depending on the cleaning application and the different kinds of cleaning required, either immersible, bolt-on or mounted types of transducers can be used. The immersible ultrasonic transducers are independent units and are the most flexible in their application. The bolt-on units are for semi-permanent placement on a cleaning tank and the mounted units are integrated in the tank. Each type is functionally the same but the mounting method is determined by how the ultrasonic cleaning system will be used.
For cleaning applications using existing tanks, the immersible or bolt-on types of transducer are the most appropriate. The immersible type is more flexible and can be placed into different tanks or different transducers can be used for the same tank. These immersible transducers simply attach to the ultrasonic generator with a cable and they can then be moved around and placed into the cleaning solution without any installation procedure. The bolt-on type of transducer is more appropriate for cleaning applications of one particular kind. If the same kinds of parts are cleaned regularly, the frequency, power and cleaning tanks remain unchanged. In this case, the transducers can be bolted onto the tanks and left there. Transducers can be mounted along the walls of the tanks or on the bottom.
Mounted transducers are often integrated into a turnkey system that customers can buy for a specific application. These systems are less flexible but everything needed is functionally matched and included in the turnkey package and offers a cost effective solution.
No matter what the cleaning application requirements are, Kaijo can help customers select ultrasonic products such as generators and transducers or recommend complete systems that will satisfy their needs. Contact Kaijo for a free consultation and quote at 408 675-5575.
September 19, 2018
While standard ultrasonic cleaning solutions are often adequate for many applications, some cleaning tasks can be completed more quickly or more effectively by using custom-built industrial ultrasonic cleaners. Kaijo’s extensive experience with ultrasonic cleaning technology allows the company to analyze cleaning requirements and make the adjustments needed to standard equipment for superior cleaning performance. With Kaijo’s advice, customers can make sure that they get the ultrasonic cleaning system they need and that the system will clean rapidly and completely.
Basic Components and the Customization Process
Ultrasonic cleaning systems are made up of an ultrasonic generator, a cleaning tank and a transducer. Each can be selected from a line of standard components, but custom features can be added, and a custom system can be assembled to respond to unusual cleaning conditions or requirements.
Kaijo’s first step is to look at the cleaning application. Typical factors affecting the cleaning system are the characteristics of the parts to be cleaned, the nature of the dirt or contamination to be removed and whether the system is mainly used for a single cleaning task or whether many different types of cleaning have to be carried out.
Based on these factors, Kaijo decides on the ideal frequencies or frequency ranges as well as the system power. Sometimes one low frequency is ideal for removing tough dirt from rugged parts in a single-use application. For other systems, several higher frequencies or a frequency range may be appropriate for light contaminant removal from delicate parts. At the same time, the system power has to be high enough to evenly fill the tank with ultrasonic waves. Kaijo has the experience necessary to make these selections.
Once Kaijo has chosen the frequencies and the power, the company looks at the physical installation. Here the type of transducer and the kind of tank are important. Transducers can be immersible, bolt-on or mounted on the tank. The tanks could be existing tanks in a cleaning facility or new tanks to be supplied. Sizes of the tanks and materials used can influence the cleaning process. Before selecting any cleaning system components or deciding on customization requirements, Kaijo sets out these characteristics for the system.
Building Industrial Ultrasonic Cleaners from the Components Up
Once the system characteristics are set, Kaijo chooses the components from its complete line of ultrasonic cleaning equipment. The company decides whether standard off-the-shelf components can satisfy the cleaning requirements or whether custom components are required. Generators are selected based on the frequency and power and the degree of automation planned for the system. Transducer choice is based on how they will be mounted in the tank: immersible, bolt-on or mounted units placed on the sides or bottom of the tank. The tanks are selected based on size and material. The system can then be assembled in a standard or custom way.
Customizable Options Include:
- Top or side mounting of the transducers
- Holders for objects to be cleaned.
- Cleaning solution heater
- Automatic loading and unloading
- Water Resonance System
Other Ultrasonic Cleaning System Options Include:
- Multistage cleaning
- Size of the unit
- Frame construction
- Custom color
- And more…
An Example of a Custom-Built Ultrasonic Cleaning System
One of Kaijo’s customers required the cleaning of a complex object. Kaijo determined that a simultaneous dual frequency system would be the most effective. The company assembled a custom ultrasonic cleaning system with transducers set for sweep-frequency operation side-mounted in a tank fitted with a Water Resonance System. The custom configuration met the cleaning needs for this customer’s application.
Kaijo’s team of specialists can evaluate specific cleaning challenges and create a solution to meet the needs of customers. Contact Kaijo for a free consultation and quote on a custom ultrasonic system designed for your specific cleaning requirements.