Peristaltic Waveform Smoothing
Florite International has now incorporated smoothing functionality into its microcomputer-based, programmable instrumentation when encountering Peristaltic waveforms.
Biologically speaking, peristalsis is the process of moving solids through the human gastrointestinal tract. The involuntary constriction and relaxation of the muscles, starting at the esophagus, creates wavelike movements that act to push food forward through the digestive system. Manufacturing often requires a similar method to move particulates, solids or viscous liquids through discrete points of a given process.
The rolling action of a peristaltic pump is used in the Food & Beverage industry for juice production, where solid waste (skins or peels) would clog up a conventional pump. The positive displacement of the peristaltic pump continues to apply pressure, pushing the solid component forward. Peristaltic Pumps are also used in industries such as water and wastewater, mining, chemical, printing and packaging.
Another important feature of peristaltic pumps is that the material being pumped is confined to the tubing. This is ideal for Pharmaceutical industry applications when transferring or dosing chemicals or additives during the manufacturing process. The pump and fluid never meet and therefore do not contaminate each other. Applications that utilize abrasive or highly corrosive materials, or require a high purity, are particularly suitable for use with Peristaltic pumps.
Florite International was contacted by one of our longtime customers with a pressing need to obtain highly accurate readings from a Peristaltic Pump. Knowing that fluid fluctuations can wreak havoc with the ability to measure flow rates, we set up an in-lab workstation complete with a pump and oscilloscope.
Ultimately, it made the most sense to apply a filter to smooth out the erroneous waveforms. Similar to how an audio filter removes the hiss of a recording but leaves the music intact, the peristaltic filter doesn’t alter the measured fluid or gas. By keeping the oscilloscope in a narrow frequency range, we were able to stay within 1-2 seconds of suppression.
The process resembled other R&D projects Florite has encountered over the years: from algorithm to schematic, proof of concept to prototype and finally a first article. For testing purposes, the filter mechanism was introduced external to our workhorse 990X units. This allowed us to make adjustments through the trial and error stages. In the end, the decision was made to keep this a closed system and the electronics were incorporated into the unit itself. This gave us the ability to make solid choices with respect to alternative frequency, signal size, suppression standard.
Do your manufacturing processes utilize Peristaltic or Dosing Pumps?
Are you unable to measure flow rates with sufficient accuracy? Florite’s Peristaltic Filter solution could be the answer you’ve been looking for. If you currently use peristaltic pumps in your applications and are experiencing erroneous waveforms, click here to contact us directly.