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Industrial Analytical Instrumentation

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Automation and control

New pinch valves from Festo give reliable shut
off and smooth media flow for optimised processes

Festo, the leading supplier of automation technology, has launched a new pneumatic pinch valve - the VZQA - which provides reliable control and shut off in food and drink production processes. The valves are durable, energy efficient, easy to service, and flexible, thanks to their simple construction, and as a result provide a cost effective alternative to conventional valves such as diaphragm and ball valves.

Image 1: Festo's VZQA pinch valve gives reliable shut off.

Image 2: The durable, energy efficient, easy to service, and flexible VZQA pinch valve.

Festo's VZQA pinch valves are a clean and technically straightforward solution for use with a wide range of media such as liquid, fibrous, particulates or granular substances. They provide smooth media flow and as such they are ideal for optimising filling and metering systems as well as for use with suction and compressed gas controls. In all applications their compact design saves valuable installation space, which enables engineers to enhance the design of their process.

There are two versions of the pinch valve available: a normally open (N/O) version for media pressures from 0 - 4 bar and a unique, normally closed (N/C) version for media pressures from 0 - 6 bar. By increasing or decreasing the pilot pressure, the valve's sealing cartridge opens or shuts off the flow, as appropriate to the version, without any additional actuators and with no risk of blockage.

The VZQA pinch valve can be actuated with low operating pressures. Depending on the medium and media pressure, an operating pressure of just 0.3 - 1 bar is sufficient in filling and metering applications to tightly shut off the media flow.

The high performance valves are extremely easy to service which enables food processing managers to save downtime and associated costs. The pinch valve's sealing cartridge can be changed in just a few minutes in four simple steps and without special tools, and they can be cleaned easily in situ thanks to their full media passage flow and very little dead space. The sealing cartridge is available in EPDM, NBR, EPDM-FPA and silicone to suit a wide range of demanding applications and media.


Made from aluminium or stainless steel, the pinch valves prove themselves in even the most challenging environments and the internal parts offer the same durability against aggressive media. Thanks to a patented sealing cartridge, the valves can withstand the very high demands in continuous daily operation, whether abrasive, corrosive, highly viscous or neutral media is used.

"The free flow design of the VZQA pinch valves minimises flow resistance, reliably preventing them from becoming blocked or clogged and since they are operated directly via the pilot air signal, they are extremely cost effective," says Steve Sands, product manager at Festo. "The new valves are available with different connections, housing materials and sealing components for a wide variety of configuration options to suit individual application requirements."

Festo in profile
Festo is a leading international supplier of automation technology with a turnover in 2011 of over €2.1 billion. Festo employs more than 15,000 people worldwide and is a proven innovator and problem solver in the field of pneumatic and electrical automation where it has established itself as the performance leader.
Festo Industrial Automation's innovative strength is demonstrated through the introduction of around 100 new products being launched every year. The company invests 9% of its turnover in R&D resulting in over 2,900 patents held worldwide.

For further information about the company's products and services, view website: www.festo.co.uk

Festo Training & Consulting specialises in the development of people, organisations and technology skills. Offering a range of open courses, structured development programmes and tailor-made, customer-specific projects, Festo trains over 42,000 delegates worldwide every year.

For further information on the training and consulting services, view website : www.festo-didactic.co.uk

Festo's Bionic Learning Network encapsulates the innovative nature of Festo, raising awareness and attracting talent to the company. Exploring the links between nature and technology opens up new areas of innovation and demonstrates complex ideas in a stimulating and enjoyable way. Festo works with an alliance of internal R&D, external educational establishments and specialist companies, to advance the development of bionic solutions for automation applications of the future.

For further information about Festo's Bionic Learning Network, view website: www.festo.com/gb/bionics   
Refer to page 893

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