The history of solenoid valves is definitely an interesting one! This versatile invention has been an important part of many crucial industrial applications since the beginning of the 1900s. The design has involved improvements that have turned this tool into a humble yet truly mighty valve.
The History of Solenoid Valves
The first Solenoid Valves were invented and manufactured in 1910 by Automatic Switch Company (ASCO). These valves went hand-in-hand with the company’s primary products: switches. Solenoid Valves could be used with level switches, float switches or temperature switches, etc. Solenoid Valves are made of four different materials: Bronze (Brass); Stainless Steel; Aluminum or Plastic. It has been proven that Solenoid Valves are close to recession-proof. These valves have a wide variety of uses in many industries, some varied examples:
- Service Industry: Car and Truck Washes> Soap & Rinse Valves
- Mining: Strip Mines> Safety Spray Down Equipment
- Autos: Auto Assembly>: Cooling Jackets for seat foam
- Medical: Hospitals> Autoclaves (Sterilizers)
- Entertainment> Volcano Eruption @ Mirage (Vegas) > Simulated Lava Flow
Solenoid Valve manufacturers are quite adept at inventing features for their customers’ requirements. Gould devised Velvetrol® for a cushion-close to help eliminate water-hammer. Bürkert was instrumental in developing the plastic Solenoid Valve in the 1950s. Others have enhanced the diaphragm-type Solenoid Valve. Features such as Manual Reset, Air-operation and Normally Open valves have become commonplace in the industry. By the 1990s, governments, industries and independent organizations all started to incorporate these systems. Solenoid Valve standards have allowed members of the industry to freely exchange ideas on a global venue.
Developments in Solenoid Valves Over Time
Newer standards continue to be made. They focus on restricting any hazardous substances in the manufacturing process of Solenoid Valves. Companies are concentrating on improving environmental friendliness. The main focus is on sustainability and health now.
New developments of the Solenoid Valves have led to significantly reduced energy consumption. The double direct-acting coil design introduction has saved costs on energy by a huge margin. There are now two different power settings based on independent windings. The coil with higher power opens the Solenoid Valves while the coil with the lower power provides a holding force when the integrated electronics begin to switch up. The double coil ensures enough power to open the valve, but uses around 75% less power to maintain the open position.
The operation and design of the coil are important because it has a direct impact on the valve’s performance. The energy-saving designs that companies are pushing for, even in conventional single coil formats, help to push the coil to open the Solenoid Valve. Within a margin of a second, the current reduction is 95%. This is sufficient enough to maintain the valve in an open position. The need for such design improvements is vital because they can significantly impact the control process.
Solenoid Valves are an integral part of many industries and complex machinery. The history of Solenoid Valves is an interesting one because it shows how the evolution of design has taken place over a mere two centuries. Here is what modern solenoid valves look like now!