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How Does a Central Vacuum System Work?

A central vacuum system is the ideal mode of operating a large network of conveying machines. While traditional single line conveying systems only allow for one conveyor at a time to be fed, a central line can feed up to 10 conveyors at a time using the same individual vacuum source. 

In a central vacuum system, a network of many material loaders is connected to a central vacuum line. Inside of the central line, a permanent vacuum is produced by a collection of a few pumps and blowers, essentially creating a line of “vacuum storage” for material loaders to draw from whenever needed. As the vacuum is drawn from by the conveyors to move plastic granules throughout the system, the pressure in the central line is maintained by the pumps which self-regulate to constantly output a specified minimum pressure. This setup allows for material to be conveyed both short and great distances, so long as the operation is within the confines of the system’s maximum performance.

Since multiple conveyors can draw airflow from the vacuum system at once, this also means that a variety of materials can be handled without the need for material changeover. Rather than utilizing a unique vacuum line for a plastic granule hopper, a powder hopper, and a flake hopper, all three can be conveyed simultaneously while drawing from the same vacuum source.

This continuous operation may seem like it would be a time and energy sink which would require an extensive number of dedicated resources, but quite the opposite is true. A central vacuum system allows for facilities to save time, save energy, and operate in a more cost-effective manner all while maximizing hourly throughput.


Energy Savings of A Central Vacuum System

As previously mentioned, a single line vacuum system allows for only one material loader to operate at a time. The material loader signals for a vacuum feed, then the attached pump is powered on to begin the conveying process for that loader. There is a slight lag as the result of the time it takes for the pump to begin operation. Once the conveying process is complete, the pump will then turn off- but this process also lags behind quite a bit. These lags result in both lost time and wasted energy every time a material loader begins or completes its operation.

In a central vacuum, there is more than one pump. Rather than a single pump turning on and off every time a conveying process is started and completed, these pumps all work together on an as-needed basis to maintain the vacuum pressure throughout the central conveying line. This simple change results in immense energy savings of up to 50% when compared to the consumption of a traditional single line vacuum system.

Although the central line maintains a specified amount of vacuum, motan’s IntelliFlow air velocity control allows for the conveying speed of each hopper to be set, no matter the conveying distance. This level of control ensures that the integrity of plastic granules is maintained, while also minimizing the amount of energy consumed by each individual conveying process.

In the event of a blower failure, an optional standby pump can work in its place. Switchover takes no time at all and happens seamlessly so that operation downtime is avoided altogether. motan’s SilentLine is equipped with an external flowmeter, making it the only material feed line of its kind that be used to detect leaks. Its double walled construction also reduces the amount of heat lost during the conveying process, further compounding the energy savings of a central vacuum system. These and other technologies from motan are designed to make your conveying operations as efficient as possible.