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# LECTURE 1 ON PNEUMATICS

INTRODUCTION
Pneumatics has long since played an important role as a technology in the performance of mechanical work. It is also used in the development of automation solutions. In the majority of applications compressed air is used for one or more of the following functions: • To determine the status of processors (sensors) • Information processing (processors) • Switching of actuators by means of final control elements • Carrying out work (actuators) To be able to control machinery and installations necessitates the construction of a generally complex logic interconnection of statuses and switching conditions. This occurs as a result of the interaction of sensors, processors, control elements and actuators in pneumatic or partly pneumatic systems.

Fundamentals of Pneumatics
Physical fundamentals Air is an abundant gas mixture with the following composition: • Nitrogen approx. 78 vol. % • Oxygen approx. 21 vol. % It also contains traces of carbon dioxide, argon, hydrogen, neon, helium, krypton and xenon. To assist in the understanding of the natural laws as well as the behaviour of air, the physical dimensions which are employed. The data is taken from the “International System of Units”, SI for short.

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Fundamentals of Pneumatics Atmospheric Pressure . This pressure is also referred to as reference pressure. Excess Pressure. (pamb) The pressure prevailing directly on the earth’s surface is known as atmospheric pressure . ( pe > 0) The range above the atmospheric pressure Vacuum Range (pe < 0) The range below the atmospheric pressure Atmospheric Differential Pressure (pe) Formula .

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15 K.Vacuum.  The absolute pressure pabs is the value relative to pressure Zero .Fundamentals of Pneumatics  Atmospheric pressure does not have a constant value.  Generally. It is equal to the sum of the atmospheric pressure and the excess pressure or vacuum. It varies with the geographical location and the weather. the standard state is the status of a solid.  The absolute pressure value pabs is approximately 100 kPa (1 bar) higher. in pneumatics all data concerning air quantity refers to the so called standard state. According to DIN 1343.01325 bar . – Standard temperature Tn = 273. fluid or gaseous substance defined by standard temperature and pressure. pressure gauges which only indicate the excess pressure are generally used. tn = 0 °C – Standard pressure pn = 101325 Pa = 1.  In practice.

i. The applicable relationship is given in Boyle-Mariotte’s Law.  Air can be compressed and it endeavours to expand. the product of absolute pressure and volume is constant for a given mass of gas. it assumes the shape of its surroundings. the volume of a given mass of gas is inversely proportional to the absolute pressure. Boyle-Mariotte’s Law At constant temperature. i. Its shape changes with the slightest resistance.e. i.e.e.  In common with all gases. the forces between the air molecules are to be disregarded for operating conditions usual in pneumatics.Fundamentals of Pneumatics Characteristics of air  A characteristic of air is its minimal cohesion. . air has no particular shape.

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. a temperature of 273 K and a temperature rise of 1 K.Fundamentals of Pneumatics Characteristics of air  Air expands by 1/273 of its volume at constant pressure. Gay-Lussac Law The volume of a given mass of gas is proportional to the absolute temperature as long as the pressure does not change.

In order to be able to calculate in 0C. the following formula is to be used: .Fundamentals of Pneumatics The foregoing equations only apply if the temperatures in K are used.

this results in the following formula for the pressure increase: or General Gas Equation The general gas equation is a combination of all three: .Fundamentals of Pneumatics If the volume is kept constant during the temperature rise.

. V or T is kept constant in each case. if one of the three factors p. the product of pressure and volume divided by the absolute temperature is constant. This general gas equation results in the previously mentioned laws.Fundamentals of Pneumatics In the case of a given mass of gas.

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a number of points must be observed. This includes primarily: the correct sizing of the pipe system the pipe material flow resistances pipe layout maintenance .Fundamentals of Pneumatics Air distribution In order to ensure reliable and trouble-free air distribution.

branches and fittings. allowance should be made in all cases for extension of the compressed-air network. Selection is best made with the aid of a nomograph. The pressure drop in the entire network should be as small as possible. To be able to calculate the pressure drop the total pipe length must be known. equivalent pipe lengths are determined. Flow resistances are represented by restrictions. Plugs and shutoff valves allow extension to be carried out easily at a later time. For fittings.Fundamentals of Pneumatics Air distribution Sizing pipe systems For new installations. Losses occur in all pipes due to flow resistances. These losses must be made up by the compressor. branches and bends. bends. . The choice of the correct internal diameter is also dependent on the operating pressure and delivery of the compressor. The main line size determined by current requirements should therefore be increased to include an appropriate safety margin.

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Festo Didactic GmbH & Co.Reference [1] Pneumatics Basic Level.. Peter Croser. Frank Ebel. 73770 Denkendorf 2002 .