Pneumatic cylinder, also known as an air cylinder, is a device that is mechanically used to produce force along with movement that’s powered by compressed air in high pressure. Force is used in these cylinders to convert the potential energy present in compressed air to kinetic energy, i.e. the energy of motion.
It is possible to derive mechanical energy from the air cylinders as the compressed gas can expand without the input of any external energy. This expansion which is the principal driving force behind the creation of the kinetic energy takes place due to the fact that the pressure gradient generated from the compressed gas is at a much higher pressure than atmospheric pressure. This expansion of air is also what ultimately propels the piston of the air cylinder to make a move in a particular direction.
Air cylinders make use of air pressure for putting air into a linear motion. They are used in a number of devices, such as air compressors. A typical form of air cylinder has a piston and a rod to operate it. Different types of cylinders are available in the market, including single acting, double acting and rodless linear air cylinders. Rodless cylinders, as the name suggests, do not have any rod but has a piston attached to a carriage within the cylinder. Airless rod cylinders come in a variety of types, including band cylinders, cable cylinders and magnetically coupled air cylinders.
Depending on the design and structure of the cylindrical system, air cylinders can be employed for a number of operations. These might include performing a full stroke interspersed with numerous intermediate stopping points, performing multiple strokes without any necessity for intermediate intervention and to perform adjustments to control the level of retraction and/or extension of a fully actuated piston rod.
Things to remember while buying a pneumatic cylinder
Although shopping for a pneumatic cylinder might sound as a fairly easy task from outside, there are several things to consider in order to choose the right model. The first thing that you need to think about is what are you planning to use an air cylinder for. Different models of air cylinders with varying capacities and working principles are required for different tasks. Some people purchase air cylinders for carrying out high end industrial projects, whereas others might use them for more simple tasks. You will also need to have a comprehensive understanding of how air cylinders work, in order to make the right technical decision. Check to see if you require any type of pneumatic accessories such as pneumatic air canons along with the main cylindrical device. Besides knowing which type of cylinder would suit you best you also need to be aware of the various manufacturers and suppliers of air cylinders and how they fare qualitatively.
Do some research on the internet about the best brands in the air cylinder market and then get in touch with them one by one to get a free consultation. This will allow you to get more acquainted with the different companies and understand their motivations while deciding on the design and development of a particular model of air cylinder. You also need to keep the budget factor into consideration while you shop for air cylinders. While high end models automatically come at higher prices, do not immediately opt for them as the advanced results they will produce might just be too much for what you actually need. In that case, investing a large sum of money on that model may prove to be just a waste. Try to find machines that are more in line with your specific technical needs.
Another thing to remember when it comes to budget is that it is always better to keep a fixed figure in your mind, but be flexible at the same time when it comes to the final billing. Going overboard with the notion of a fixed budget can mean that you might have to give up on quality at the end of the day. This is something that you should strictly guard against, as you do not want to make another major investment on an air cylinder within a short span of time. Always ask for trails when you choose your machine, as in that way you can have a better idea about its effectiveness.
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