February 16, 2018
Hospitals, medical research centers and facilities are increasingly using industrial ultrasonic cleaners on 3D printed models of organs or body parts to create prosthetics. Organ models for a particular patient can help determine the best way to proceed with surgery and may help with accurate diagnosis. Both models and prosthetics are used in educational programs as well. When used in such programs and in medical practice or research, the 3D printed product gives a complete reproduction that can be examined from all sides rather than a flat image showing only one side.
Organs and body parts often have complex shapes and irregular surfaces that must be reproduced in the 3D printing process. To accurately create intricate protrusions and make sure the model does not collapse when holes and crevices are printed, the 3D printing process deposits support material as well as the material used to build the model. The support material temporarily holds up the build material until the latter has hardened and is self supporting. The support material then has to be removed. To ensure model accuracy, it is important to remove the support material cleanly and completely.
How Ultrasonic Cleaning Removes Support Material
Ultrasonic cleaning can remove the support material without affecting the build material and can ensure that the removal is rapid and complete. Depending on the materials used, the ultrasonic cleaning system can operate at frequencies delivering exactly the right cleaning strength.
The industrial ultrasonic cleaning systems consist of an ultrasonic generator, a transducer and a cleaning tank. The generator produces the ultrasonic electrical signal and the transducer converts the electrical impulses into ultrasonic waves in the cleaning solution. Microscopic cavitation bubbles are created in the pressure troughs of these waves and the bubbles collapse in the pressure peaks. When the bubbles come into contact with the support material, the scrubbing action of the bubbles removes the material while the build material is left unaffected.
Low frequencies can be used for build materials that can withstand a strong cleaning action and for robust models. Frequencies of 26kHz or 38kHz produce large bubbles and a strong cleaning action. Delicate models or models with fragile build materials can have the support material removed with higher frequencies delivering gentle cleaning action. Frequencies up to the megahertz range produce smaller bubbles and the resulting cleaning action is gentler. Ultrasonic cleaning system manufacturers can help design systems that deliver just the right amount of cleaning strength for the 3D printing materials used.
The Advantages of Using Industrial Ultrasonic Cleaners
Ultrasonic cleaning systems are ideal for removing medical 3D printed support material because they provide several advantages over traditional methods using harsh chemicals to dissolve the material. Such advantages include the following:
- Cleaning is rapid and completely removes the support material while leaving the build material unaffected.
- The ultrasonic cleaning process is completely safe for the personnel preparing the models.
- No toxic chemicals are introduced into the medical environment.
- Disposal of the wastewater does not require additional safety procedures.
Kaijo has a complete line of industrial ultrasonic cleaning systems and equipment with the latest technology and the advanced features required for medical 3D printing. The company can supply compact and self-contained turnkey systems or separate components to be assembled in a custom solution. Kaijo has extensive experience in ultrasonic cleaning and personnel with the expertise to select the systems, frequencies and power ideal for specific medical 3D printing applications. Kaijo’s industrial ultrasonic cleaners are being used at medical facilities to remove 3D printing support material and can help ensure that such applications meet the needs of the medical profession.Read More
January 30, 2018
Ultrasonic cleaning systems can remove a wide variety of contaminants from the surfaces of parts to be cleaned, but specific material types can be removed more quickly and completely with additional measures. Oil-based dirt, grease and organic compounds can take the form of hard deposits that are difficult for the cavitation bubbles of the ultrasonic system to attack. The cleaning action of the bubbles will eventually break up and remove such material, but the process is more time-consuming than for other types of dirt.
In such cases heating the ultrasonic cleaning solution helps speed up the cleaning process. The hot liquid softens the deposits and makes it easier for the ultrasonic cleaning action to take place. Often a mild detergent is added as well to dissolve some of the contaminants. Cleaning with a heated solution is an effective way of making the ultrasonic cleaning system perform efficiently and at full capacity.
How Heat Improves Performance
The performance of ultrasonic cleaning systems depends on correctly matching the system to the characteristics of the parts to be cleaned and the materials to be removed. Robust parts such as metal automotive components can often be cleaned in a plain water bath using the strong cleaning action of the lower frequencies of ultrasonic systems. More delicate parts such as semiconductor wafers need the softer cleaning action provided by higher frequencies. If the material to be removed from such fragile parts is extensive and hardened, additional measures improve ultrasonic cleaning performance.
Depending on the contaminants to be removed, mild detergents and heat can be applied. The detergent and heat combination can be tailored to the particular material and an appropriate selection can improve cleaning performance substantially. Typically, contaminants are made up of several components and the detergent increases the solubility of some of them while heat softens the material and increases the effectiveness of the detergent. For the delicate cleaning of higher frequencies, the bubbles are smaller and less energetic. This lower energy is often not enough to remove hard materials quickly, but once heat has softened the material and the detergent has dissolved some of the bonds keeping the dirt in place, the small bubbles can clean quickly and completely.
Heating the Ultrasonic Bath
Ultrasonic cleaning systems are made up of ultrasonic generators, transducers and tanks. The ultrasonic generators produce the ultrasonic electrical signal and are selected based on the frequency needed for the cleaning application. The transducers are mounted in the bath immersed in the cleaning solution and they have to be matched to work with the selected generator. Both can be designed for a single or a range of frequencies
For the tanks, the only requirement is that they have to be large enough to hold the parts to be cleaned. If the parts are to be held in a basket to keep them away from the bottom and sides of the tank and avoid damage from vibrations, the tank has to be big enough to accommodate the basket.
For cleaning applications requiring heat, both the transducers and the tank must be designed for a heated cleaning solution. While cleaning applications may require different temperatures for optimal cleaning, a typical temperature may be around 80 degrees centigrade (176 degrees Fahrenheit).
Kaijo’s ultrasonic cleaning systems can accommodate such heating requirements and the company can help customers select suitable equipment and systems from their complete line of ultrasonic products. The transducers and tanks are heat-resistant up to 100 degrees centigrade (212 degrees Fahrenheit) and Kaijo’s customer support team can help determine what combination of detergent and heating is ideal for specific customer’s cleaning applications.Read More
January 19, 2018
Conventional degreasing and other cleaning processes involving the use of pressure cleaning, solvent and abrasives are on their way out in many industries. The change has come about for a number of reasons. The movement of industry towards green processes is one reason — solvents are often toxic to the environment. New environmental regulations being put in place by various state and local governments make it very hard for industries to get around, as well.
Cost- and efficiency-related concerns, however, have been the primary reason for the move away from conventional cleaning techniques. The chemicals needed in these approaches can be expensive, and can require further expense in the protection of the workers who use them. Safe disposal of toxic residue and the requisite inspections can take considerable investment, as well.
Yet, effective cleaning is essential to a great many industrial processes. From the immaculate surfaces needed prior to the application of powder coating processes, to the cleaning of high-tech filters and bearings at NASA, and from the jewelry industry to the automotive industry, safe, cost-effective and superior cleaning technology is a great need.
In Search of a More Affordable, and Cost-effective Cleaning Approach
In many industries that require the cleaning of industrial parts or other articles of various sizes, ultrasonic cleaning systems have proven to be the method of choice for a number of important reasons.
The action of ultrasonic energy on certain surfaces is observed in a number of scenarios. Anyone who is familiar with boats, for instance, has usually seen some damage to propellers — ultrasonic energy generated in the churn of propellers can be uncontrolled in its power; it often excavates tiny pits in the metal. When this energy is applied in a well-controlled manner, however, it can be used as a powerful cleaning agent.
Ultrasonic energy works in a very simple way — when dense, elastic media such as water is subjected to high-frequency energy, it expands and contracts so rapidly as to cause millions of microscopic fractures or tears. The small bubbles that are created collapse quickly after they are formed, often with great force. When such vacuum bubbles collapse close to the surface of an object, the force can knock surface contaminants off. Ultrasonic cleaning systems successfully apply ultrasonic energy to perform a great deal of useful work.
How do Ultrasonic Cleaners achieve their Effect?
Ultrasonic cleaning units consist of a tank usually filled with water, coupled to a powerful ultrasonic transducer capable of generating high-energy ultrasonic frequencies between 20 to 200 kHz. When objects to be cleaned — anything from industrial parts to dental equipment and jewelry — are placed in the bath, the ultrasonic waves generated create millions of cavitation bubbles. Localized areas can experience pressures over 10,000 psi, and temperatures over 10,000°F; dirt is effectively knocked off. Since these pressures and temperatures are created over microscopic areas, however, there is never any harm done to the work to be cleaned.
How are Ultrasonic Cleaners Superior to Conventional Cleaning Solutions?
Every nook is reached: With conventional cleaning — the pressure sprayers, solvents and abrasives — the cleaning action can often only reach areas clearly exposed. Ultrasonic energy, however, is able to get to hidden, unexposed areas.
The cleaning tends to be thorough: With cavitation bubbles forming and imploding in their millions, there is cleaning action in a way no water jet or abrasive can ever achieve. Even more importantly, the cleaning is achieved with little surface damage done, something that can be very important in the high-tech industry, the jewelry industry, or even the automotive industry, where delicate engine seals and finishes may need attention.
Insoluble contaminants are cleaned: Solvents are able to clean soluble contaminants; many contaminants, however, are simply resistant to the effects of solvents. Ultrasonic energy simply displaces such contaminants without the need for abrasive action.
Ultrasonic cleaners Help the Bottom Line
With such powerful and safe cleaning ability, the toughest cleaning jobs are usually completed in under an hour, with little need for supervisory personnel, or the need for the toxic waste disposal. With practically no moving parts, these appliances tend to require minimal maintenance, as well.
Ultrasonic cleaning systems are not all made the same. Kaijo, an industry leader in ultrasonic cleaning, has been at the cutting edge of the technology for over 65 years, developing purpose-built ultrasonic cleaning solutions for every industrial application. With the latest in ultrasonic cleaning deployed in practically every industry around the world, Kaijo has more experience with this technology than nearly any other name in the business.Read More
December 22, 2017
The large compressors that utility companies use to move natural gas through pipelines and into storage need extensive maintenance. Both the compressors themselves and the engines that drive them require regular cleaning of parts such as valves, rings, sensors and actuators. Unwanted deposits have to be dissolved, grease and grime have to be cleaned off and contaminants have to be removed.
Traditionally such cleaning and maintenance work has been carried out by hand. Parts are soaked in strong chemical solvents and then scrubbed to remove residues. Soaking takes a lot of time and the chemicals are expensive. Scrubbing is labor-intensive and it’s hard to get parts completely clean. If it’s important to remove deposits completely, it might take several cycles with different chemicals and various cleaning methods. Overall, the cleaning process takes a lot of time and costs a lot of money.
Utilities can achieve better cleaning performance at lower cost by using industrial ultrasonic cleaners. The process uses powerful ultrasonic generators and transducers to generate microscopic bubbles in the cleaning solution. The scrubbing action of the bubbles cleans parts completely and rapidly. Manual cleaning and expensive, harsh chemicals are not needed. Utilities using this process can reap substantial benefits from the advantages that ultrasonic cleaning delivers.
Industrial Ultrasonic Cleaner Advantages and Benefits
Ultrasonic technology can remove deposits from compressor and engine parts using only a water-based cleaning solution. For specific contaminants, mild solvents can be added to the water to speed up cleaning. For hardened grease and oil-based materials, the solution can be heated so the cleaning bubbles can more easily dislodge the softened material. In each case, no additional manual scrubbing is required.
The bubbles generated by industrial ultrasonic cleaners appear wherever the cleaning solution can penetrate. This means that crevices, dead-end holes, bolt threads and inaccessible interior surfaces are cleaned just as completely as the outsides of the parts. As long as a part is submerged in the ultrasonic bath, all surfaces are cleaned equally and completely.
Because harsh chemicals are not needed, ultrasonic cleaning starts out with a substantial operating cost advantage. The savings are even higher when the time saved through faster cleaning can result in increased throughput or reduced downtime. Additional savings come from reduced labor costs. Finally there are savings from not having to neutralize and safely discard the toxic cleaning chemicals used in traditional cleaning processes. The fact that ultrasonic cleaning is environmentally friendly is an additional bonus.
While utilities can save substantial amounts of money switching to industrial ultrasonic cleaning systems, an even stronger incentive is the improved cleaning performance. When machine parts are cleaned down to the bare metal everywhere, maintenance is more effective, easier to carry out and achieves improved reliability for the compressors and engines. Parts that are completely clean have a longer life and extend the lifetime of the corresponding machines. Often failure rates and unscheduled down time is reduced and maintenance intervals can be extended. Overall facility-operating performance can be improved.
Kaijo can help utilities realize the benefits of using ultrasonic technology. The company offers free consulting services to determine which ultrasonic cleaning systems are best suited for the customer’s application. Sometimes a turnkey system represents the best solution while at other times retrofitted components using existing cleaning tanks is cost-effective. Kaijo can follow up its recommendations with proposals from its complete line of industrial ultrasonic cleaning systems. Clients in many different industry verticals already use Kaijo ultrasonic systems to reduce their maintenance times and costs. Utilities, with their many stations requiring machine parts cleaning can achieve similar results with Kaijo’s help.Read More
December 13, 2017
Coatings of grime, grease and sludge are only some of the stubborn contaminants that industries everywhere struggle with. The conventional approach to the cleaning and maintenance of equipment has always been environmentally hazardous, involved harsh chemicals, difficult protective equipment for workers, and costly compliance procedures. Few alternatives have proven viable.
Ultrasonic cleaning technology today, however, has finally arrived, and offers a solution. An affordable and highly effective advance in the area of safe industrial cleaning, these systems have been proven for years, with wide use seen since the 70s. From antiques to the delicate components of mechanical watches and electronic equipment, and from greasy engine blocks to industrial mechanical equipment, ultrasonic cleaners are universal in their usefulness. They are even used to clean the thousands of window blinds that cover windows in offices and public buildings everywhere.
Sound, not substance
Ultrasonic cleaning relies on the idea that physical removal of stains, oil and soil from materials does not require physical contact. Instead, this cleaning method relies on the principle of cavitation.
At its most basic, the principle of cavitation is simple enough — it describes the phenomenon in which disturbances in liquids lead to the creation of short-lived cavities bubbles of gas or vacuum. In certain scenarios involving high levels of energy, the destruction of bubbles so formed generates considerable amounts of force. The impact created by such imploding bubbles powers the ultrasonic cleaning method.
At its simplest, an ultrasonic cleaning appliance is a tank fitted with a special loudspeaker capable of generating sound waves in the ultrasonic frequency spectrum. At tens of thousands of cycles a second, this spectrum lies far above the human auditory threshold.
When high-energy ultrasonic sound waves pass through a liquid like water, they create the desired disturbance, leading to the formation of millions of microscopic bubbles. As these bubbles form and implode many times each second, they create the cavitation energy needed to knock dirt, grease, debris and other contaminants off the surface of any article immersed. It is as if there are millions of microscopic chisels knocking dirt off. The cavitation energy created by these bubbles, however, is gentle, even as it removes tough contamination.
Choosing the right kind of ultrasonic cleaning technology
The transducers used in ultrasonic cleaning systems are specifically designed for the generation of high levels of ultrasonic sound energy. There are two kinds of technology in wide use today, magnetostrictive and piezoelectric, the former being a more conventional approach than the latter.
In magnetostrictive transducers, layered metals induced to rapidly expand or contract when subjected to varying magnetic fields. The action creates ultrasonic sound waves. These are robust transducers, but are limited in their versatility. They are rarely able to create ultrasonic sound energy in the spectrum over 30 kHz.
Piezoelectric transducers are a newer technology. These devices exploit the piezoelectric principle — which describes the ability of objects to change shape when exposed to electric fields. In piezoelectric transducers, crystals capable of such physical transformation are attached to metal plates that amplify their action. Piezoelectric transducer technology is far more suitable for ultrasonic cleaning simply because it is able to create ultrasonic sound energy at very high frequencies. This makes it far more versatile and energy-efficient.
Kaijo Piezoelectric ultrasonic cleaning systems
The higher the ultrasonic sound frequency, the smaller the bubbles created, the gentler the action, and the more precise the cavitation action. Kaijo’s ultrasonic cleaning systems employ piezoelectric transducer technology for its inherent superiority. With transducers that produce ultrasonic energy from 20 kHz in the ultrasonic range to over 1.5 MHz in the megasonic range, Kaijo’s ultrasonic cleaning systems offers versatile cleaning ability. With power at these sonic spectrums ranging up to 1200 W per transducer, these are among the most versatile cleaning technologies in the world.
With more than 65 years in the industry, Kaijo is, today, at the forefront of the ultrasonic cleaning industry, and offers a range of quality ultrasonic cleaning tools for every industry need. From the electronics industry to the medical industry and industries using heavy mechanical equipment, Kaijo offers clients both the right tools and expert advice in making the correct choice. Whatever your industrial need, Kaijo’s turnkey Ultrasonic Cleaning Systems provide a cost effective solution. Specialists at Kaijo also help analyze a customer’s cleaning requirements and propose the most effective ultrasonic cleaning solutions based on their specific cleaning requirements.Read More
November 20, 2017
408 Fuel injectors may suffer from deposits to such an extent that they have to be removed from the engine and cleaned manually. Traditional methods involve soaking in harsh solvents, forcing solvents through the injector at high pressure and removing deposits manually. These methods often don’t result in complete removal of the deposits and they may damage the injector. In addition, the solvents used are expensive and difficult to dispose of properly and in an environmentally friendly manner. The cleaning process itself is time-consuming and expensive. Ultrasonic cleaning systems offer an effective alternative that doesn’t suffer from the same drawbacks and that cleans quickly and completely.
How Ultrasonic Cleaning Works
With ultrasonic cleaning, fuel injectors are placed in a cleaning tank that has an ultrasonic transducer installed at the bottom or in the walls. Alternatively, a portable ultrasonic transducer may be placed in the cleaning solution. The injectors should be placed in a basket so that they don’t touch the tank walls or bottom to avoid damage from possible vibrations.
The ultrasonic transducer is powered from an ultrasonic generator that supplies the high frequency electrical signal. The normal signal for this type of ultrasonic cleaning is about 30 kHz, for example 26 kHz or 38 kHz. The transducer generates ultrasonic waves in the cleaning solution and the waves cause cavitation bubbles to form as the sound pressure rises and falls. It is these bubbles that clean hard metal surfaces such as those of fuel injectors.
Because the bubbles appear wherever the cleaning solution is present, ultrasonic cleaning works both outside and inside the fuel injectors, cleaning hard-to-reach places effectively and removing surface contamination everywhere. As a result, deposits and surface contamination are removed from inside fuel injector holes, from inside threads and from couplings. All foreign material is dislodged and cleaned down to the bare metal. At the same time, ultrasonic cleaning is fast, typically taking from ten to twenty minutes.
Ultrasonic Cleaning Hints
Ultrasonic cleaning systems are safe and easy to use and they clean without the use of aggressive chemicals. They work well with all kinds of parts to be cleaned but performance is improved when a few simple factors are taken into account. While they normally remove all dirt, they can work even faster for some cleaning applications.
Cleaning performance depends to some extent on the frequency used and the cleaning power of the generator. Lower frequencies deliver more powerful cleaning action but may damage fragile parts and some metal surfaces. In any case, the generator has to be powerful enough to fill the cleaning tank with ultrasonic waves. Too little power results in dead areas where the cleaning bubbles are fewer.
Another way of speeding up the cleaning process is to add a mild solvent to the cleaning solution. Although ultrasonic cleaning works well with plain water, dissolving or softening the deposit will help the bubbles clean. If the nature of the contaminant is known, specific solvents or detergents that attack the material to be removed can be added to the cleaning solution. Unlike cleaning with traditional methods, no soaking is required, and the mild solvent or detergent works together with the cavitation bubbles to speed up the cleaning action.
Kaijo’s 60 years of experience with ultrasonic cleaners allow the company to propose the best solutions for their customers’ cleaning requirements. Kaijo can advise companies that have to clean automotive parts such as fuel injectors regarding the best ultrasonic frequencies to use and the power needed for the ultrasonic generator. The company can follow up with proposals from its complete line of ultrasonic cleaning equipment and can make suggestions based in its experience in supplying such equipment to various companies working with new and restored automotive parts.Read More
November 8, 2017
From delicate medical equipment to machine parts, there is very little in the world of industrial cleaning where ultrasonic cleaners do not excel, often leaving conventional cleaning methods behind. Making use of sonic waves at frequencies as high as 400 kHz to create and implode millions of bubbles on surfaces that need work, ultrasonic cleaning forms microscopic areas of high cavitation pressure, and momentary bursts of heat at temperatures as high as 5,000° C. These actions create cleaning forces that are both powerful and gentle at the same time. From lime scale and rust to fungus and dried bodily fluids, ultrasonic cleaning is far and away the most efficient and cost-effective way to clean practically any surface.
If you’re a business owner considering a cleaning solution, however, you’re possibly very interested in the latter part of this argument: the one to do with cost-effectiveness. Can a tool as efficient and as high-tech really be cost-effective? How exactly does the cost-effectiveness come about?
You save on materials
Depending on the cleaning task on hand, regular high-pressure spray washers require a great deal of chemical help to get much done. The pressure of the water or other liquid is usually insufficient when it comes to loosening hard stains. Not only are the chemical agents expensive, however, workers often need protective equipment, and articles cleaned can sustain some damage.
These concerns do not exist with ultrasonic cleaners. Cleaning with high-frequency pressure waves does not require chemical action to loosen dirt up. Certainly, a mild detergent solution may be used when you use ultrasonic cleaners — it helps move loosened dirt away from the surface; it tends to be inexpensive, however.
Best of all, with the need for powerful chemicals absent, there’s far less expense made complying with environmental regulations to do with safe disposal.
You save on labor costs
One of the greatest benefits to choosing ultrasonic cleaners over pressure washers appears the form of savings in time and effort expended. The ultrasonic waves generated by these cleaners do not need to be directly aimed at surfaces to be cleaned, no matter how hidden they may be. They get into every part of the work that you need cleaned, no matter how small, inconveniently shaped, or hidden. This means that workers spend less time getting into nooks and crannies. Work becomes cleaner with little effort. With faster cleaning made possible, you get greater productivity out of your labor force.
You save on maintenance
Conventional spray washers can need plenty of energy to operate, and careful, and expensive maintenance. They come with high-pressure pumps, hoses and nozzles. Moving parts don’t last forever. Motors, washers, joints and other parts frequently wear out. If there are toxic chemicals used, you need to take preventive maintenance to make sure that these chemicals cannot get to places where they can cause harm in the event of a leak. Ultrasonic cleaning, on the other hand, simply works. These models come with no moving parts — all you have is an ultrasonic transducer, and a bath of liquid. These models keep working forever.
Work with the best in the business
If the information here has your interest, you should think of Kaijo, one of the top manufacturers of industrial ultrasonic cleaners in the world. Kaijo offers industrial customers everything from customized ultrasonic cleaners to standalone equipment and turnkey installations. With experience catering to the cleaning needs of every kind of industry out there from automobiles to jewelry and from medical institutions to catering, Kaijo is the leader in ultrasonic technology worldwide.Read More
October 30, 2017
Ultrasonic parts cleaners use ultrasonic frequency generators and transducers to create tiny bubbles in water or a mild detergent solution. The bubbles produce a microscopic scrubbing action that is highly effective in removing surface contaminants from solid metal surfaces such as brass and stainless steel. Traditional cleaning methods using harsh chemicals and mechanical scrubbing are more labor intensive and they don’t clean as well as ultrasonic parts cleaners. Companies that have to clean brass and stainless steel parts can reduce cleaning times, reduce production costs and improve cleaning performance by switching to ultrasonic cleaners for their cleaning applications.
How Ultrasonic Technology Cleans Brass and Stainless Steel
For robust parts such as those made from brass and stainless steel, ultrasonic cleaners operating at the lower ultrasonic frequency ranges are the most effective. Ultrasonic generators for 26 kHz or 38 kHz create energetic bubbles that form and collapse in time with the cleaning frequency. When they collapse near the surface of the metal, they release bursts of energy that dislodge dirt particles but don’t harm the solid metal surface.
For metal parts covered in oil or grease, the effectiveness of ultrasonic cleaners can be increased by adding a mild detergent to the water bath and by heating the cleaning solution slightly. Heating softens the oil and grease and the detergent helps dissolve it. The ultrasonic bubbles penetrate wherever there is cleaning solution so cleaning is rapid and complete.
Benefits of Using Ultrasonic Cleaners
When a facility switches from traditional cleaning methods to ultrasonic cleaning, it can expect substantial benefits from making the change. With environmental concerns becoming more important, eliminating the use of harsh chemicals provides a big advantage and helps increase worker safety as well. Cleaning with ultrasound is quick, effective and convenient and does not require constant monitoring.
Instead of spending money on expensive cleaning chemicals, facilities that use ultrasonic parts cleaners only have to buy small quantities of mild solvents or detergents. The costs associated with chemical storage, chemical handling and toxic waste disposal disappear as well. Often chemical baths do not completely remove surface dirt from the metal parts and mechanical scrubbing is required. When carried out manually, high labor costs are incurred due to the time-consuming nature of the work. When scrubbing by machine, costs include the purchase of the machine and its maintenance. Switching to ultrasonic cleaning avoids all these costs and provides substantial savings.
In addition to incomplete cleaning, traditional cleaning methods suffer from limitations on where they can clean. Parts with complex shapes are hard to clean with scrubbing and bolt holes, crevices, slots and internal cavities may be inaccessible. Ultrasonic cleaning produces the cleaning bubbles wherever cleaning solution is present. As long as the water or mild detergent solution is in contact with the part surface when the part is immersed in the cleaning bath, the ultrasonic bubbles will scrub the inside of holes and hard-to-reach places. Parts are cleaned inside and out, quickly and reliably.
How Kaijo Can Help Make the Switch
Kaijo has extensive experience with ultrasonic technology and the in house expertise to advise customers how best to clean their brass and stainless steel parts. The company offers free consultation and can advise facility managers and owners how best to solve specific cleaning problems. Backed by its complete line of ultrasonic cleaning systems and equipment, Kaijo can make recommendations on solutions for particular cleaning applications. Typical results of a switch to ultrasonic cleaning include lower overall operating costs, increased productivity due to reduced cleaning times and improved output as a result of better cleaning performance.Read More
October 16, 2017
De-ionized (DI) water is plain water that has been purified to remove contaminants such as metals and salts (ions). When DI water is used in ultrasonic cleaning systems it can improve cleaning performance, depending on the parts to be cleaned and the nature of the contaminants to be removed. Such increased cleaning performance is especially important for delicate parts that can’t tolerate detergents. For these cleaning applications, using slightly heated DI water makes the ultrasonic cleaning process more effective than when using plain water.
When to Use DI Water
While ultrasonic cleaning systems will work with plain water, adding a mild detergent can often speed up the cleaning action. Delicate parts such as semiconductor wafers, printed circuit boards and some medical devices might be damaged by using detergents, so in these applications cleaning with DI water is recommended. The DI water helps the ultrasonic bubbles clean rapidly, even in the absence of detergents.
For stubborn grease and oil contamination, DI water is not effective in speeding up the cleaning process. Instead, a mild detergent or solvent specific to the particular contaminant is needed. Sometimes using a solvent that attacks the dirt but doesn’t harm the part to be cleaned can be found. For other types of cleaning, the use of DI water throughout the cleaning process is beneficial.
When an ultrasonic cleaning system has removed dirt from the parts to be cleaned, the cleaning solution is drained away but the parts often still have to be rinsed to finish the cleaning process. Normal water has dissolved minerals and other impurities so that rinsing can leave a deposit. After the parts are dry, they may have spots or films left over from the evaporated water. If this is not acceptable, DI water can be used for rinsing. Since it contains no impurities, dried parts and components will be completely clean and free of spots.
How DI Water Helps Clean
DI water helps ultrasonic systems clean parts and components in two ways. DI water without any additives has no impurities and therefore acts like a sponge. Once the microscopic bubbles generated by the ultrasonic cleaning system have dislodged tiny particles, the DI water quickly absorbs any dissolved substances. Normal water already contains impurities and therefore doesn’t absorb contaminants to the same extent.
A second way in which DI water helps ultrasonic systems clean quickly applies when mild detergents are added to the system. When normal water is used, the detergent first absorbs the impurities in the water before going on to help clean away dirt. With DI water, there are no impurities to reduce the effectiveness of the detergent and all of the cleaning power goes to absorb contaminants removed from the parts to be cleaned.
As a result, the use of DI water can improve the effectiveness of ultrasonic cleaning systems in general. It speeds up cleaning for applications that can’t use detergents and helps systems clean when detergents are required. In both cases, rinsing with DI water will remove any remaining impurities.
How Kaijo Can Help
Kaijo has over 65 years of experience with ultrasonic technology and can help with specific customer applications. The company will provide free consultation and advice on using ultrasonic cleaning systems and can help determine whether the use of DI water is effective in each customer’s application. As well as giving expert advice, Kaijo can follow up with concrete proposals drawn from its extensive line of ultrasonic cleaning systems and components. In addition to guidance on DI water, customers can get advice on which systems will work best for them, what ultrasonic frequencies to use for their cleaning applications and how to best configure their systems.Read More
September 29, 2017
The aerospace industry manufactures high-precision parts as well as repairing and maintaining complex engines and machinery. Production parts and parts from maintenance and repair operations are often contaminated by dirt, grease, oil or other lubricants deriving from normal operation or from production processes. Traditionally these parts have been cleaned manually by scrubbing or washing with aggressive solvents or other chemicals. Ultrasonic cleaning systems offer an alternative that saves time and money through an environmentally friendly process that cleans parts quickly and efficiently.
How Ultrasonic Cleaning Systems Work
Ultrasonic cleaning systems consist of ultrasonic generators, transducers and cleaning tanks. The ultrasonic generators produce the high frequency electrical signal that the transducers, located inside the cleaning tanks, convert to ultrasonic waves in the cleaning fluid. The ultrasonic waves create microscopic bubbles that scrub the parts immersed in the cleaning fluid and remove surface contaminants.
The process works quickly and cleans completely everywhere the cleaning fluid can penetrate, even in crevices, tubes, holes and other hard-to-reach places. The cleaning fluid can be plain water or mild detergents can be added for improved cleaning performance. When heavy grease or similar heat-sensitive materials have to be cleaned, the cleaning fluid can be heated to soften the contaminant and allow cleaning to be completed faster.
Transitioning to Ultrasonic Cleaning
The aerospace industry can change over to ultrasonic cleaning easily and smoothly because the cleaning tasks are often discrete and clearly defined. For example, machining metal parts or extruding tubes often involves coating the metal with lubricating oil. When the parts come off the line, they have to be cleaned. Traditional cleaning involves a cleaning station that spray washes or scrubs the parts. The station can be replaced with a turn-key ultrasonic cleaning system that works more quickly. Because cleaning now takes less time, the rest of the production process can remain unchanged although overall productivity may well increase.
For repairs and maintenance, parts may have to be cleaned before being re-installed. Such parts are often soaked in chemicals to remove contaminants. The same soaking tanks can be used for ultrasonic cleaning by installing transducers in the existing tanks. The production line remains unchanged but the cleaning is accomplished faster and without chemicals.
Advantages of Ultrasonic Cleaning
Using ultrasonic cleaning systems allows aerospace companies satisfy their cleaning requirements more quickly and at a lower cost than with traditional cleaning methods. Ultrasonic cleaning takes less time than mechanical or manual scrubbing and removes contaminants completely. A quick rinse and drying takes less time than a complete wash and possibly neutralization of cleaning chemicals used with other cleaning methods. Storage, handling and disposal costs for toxic chemicals are eliminated as are equipment costs for ventilation, fume hoods and employee safety. Ultrasonic cleaning uses only mild detergents and does not pose any hazards for workers.
In addition to faster cleaning and reduced costs, ultrasonic cleaning systems offer better cleaning performance. Lower frequencies deliver robust cleaning action with larger bubbles while higher frequencies generate smaller bubbles and more gentle cleaning. Customers can fine tune cleaning performance by selecting a frequency that cleans quickly to remove contaminants while leaving the underlying surface clean and smooth. Even delicate machined parts can be cleaned effectively at high frequencies while heavy dirt can be removed with low frequency systems.
Ultrasonic Cleaning Benefits
The lower costs, reduced cleaning time and safe cleaning method provided by ultrasonic cleaning systems can deliver substantial benefits to aerospace manufacturers. Production facilities become more efficient and improved cleaning performance results in higher customer satisfaction and fewer problems as a result of incomplete cleaning.
Ultrasonic cleaning technology leader Kaijo has supplied ultrasonic cleaners to the aerospace industry and has the experience and expertise to help aerospace manufacturers and sub-contractors transition to using ultrasonic cleaning. Kaijo can supply a complete line of ultrasonic cleaning systems, from turn-key installations to separate components and customized equipment. The company can advise customers how best to meet their ultrasonic cleaning needs, make specific recommendations and ensure that the anticipated benefits are realized. For a free quote or consultation to determine how ultrasonic cleaning can be used for your specific industry application contact Kaijo or email [email protected].Read More