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Versatile actuator control valve promises better energy consumption

03 July 2016

SMC has modified its three-port three-position valve, VEX3, used to control actuators, giving customers greater benefits in terms of cost savings and versatility. The new VEX3 is said to offer energy savings and greater handling flexibility thanks to the addition of a manual override option. 

The power has been almost halved from 1.8 W to 1 W, resulting in cost savings. Manual override options have been added to the existing non-locking push type – locking slot, push turn locking and push turn lever types, offering easy handling and greater flexibility.

The new 3/3 VEX3 series features additional benefits to the existing conventional 2/2, 3/2 and 5/3 valves. The VEX3 is smaller in size, and when added to the existing benefit of fewer components required per circuit, it delivers in terms of space and cost savings. The VEX3 – with flow up to 3300 l/min – has three positions, making it possible to perform intermediate stops of cylinders up to Ø 125 mm or to change the speed of cylinders up to 200 mm bore size. It is also possible to connect two valves to a double acting cylinder, controlling up to nine different positions, including slow stopping, acceleration and deceleration.

An SMC spokesperson said: “The functions of the VEX3 can be performed by an electric actuator, but this new valve offers greater force, given by the compressed air and is more cost efficient to purchase and operate."

Further savings can be achieved in vacuum applications when suction or release of the workpiece are not required, as the valve can be set to the intermediate position where there is no air movement and energy is not being wasted.

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