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Variable speed drive boosts profitability of dry ice cleaning system

Variable speed drive boosts profitability of dry ice cleaning system

Cold Jet is the world leader in developing innovative, environmentally responsible dry ice cleaning solutions that help companies reduce maintenance costs, enhance product quality, prolong equipment life and improve productivity and worker safety. The company’s extensive line of dry ice cleaning systems are used in a variety of industries, making productive use of recycled carbon dioxide while eliminating the need for chemicals and water in the cleaning process.

The basis of Cold Jet’s technology is dry ice blasting. Its flagship pellet dry ice cleaning product, the Aero, utilises the patented SureFlow system which features an isolated, insulated hopper that reduces sublimation, as well as a radial feeder to provide smooth cleaning performance. As a cost savings measure, Cold Jet replaced its existing drive solution on the Aero with a Control Techniques Unidrive M100, reducing the production cost by around $100 per machine. “The feeder is the core of our Aero product,” said Neal Williams, electrical engineering and controls manager at Cold Jet. “It regulates how much dry ice passes into the blaster unit and, consequently, the level of blasting aggression.”

An AC variable speed drive is used to control the feeder and, during the redesign, Cold Jet took the opportunity to replace its existing drive system in order to achieve cost savings. “We considered a number of AC drive suppliers, but with Control Techniques’ Unidrive M100 we were able to achieve the same level of performance as our existing drive, but at a better price – some $100 less per unit,” said Williams. “I also had experience with Control Techniques’ products in the past, so I knew the quality of the technology.”

The Unidrive M100 AC drive has been designed as a value product, offering quality and performance for general open loop industrial applications. It offers an easy-to-use LED keypad and a concise parameter set. The Unidrive M100 also uses an SD card with AI-backup to clone and transfer parameter sets. Its open loop V/Hz mode is quick to configure and features automatic tuning. “It proved straightforward to incorporate into our design, and required just a couple of changes to our schematics before we were up and running,” said Williams.

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