Product Case Study Info
3. Custom Needle Valve for Vacuum venting reduces risk of operator exposure to the products
Valve: Custom Needle Valve for Vacuum venting
Handling / Material: Pharmaceutical powders
Client / Industry: Pharmaceutical manufacture
Geo Location: Spain
- Hygienic piston valve to port vacuum to pharmaceutical containers during processing
- The existing solution didn’t use a valve and exposed operators to potentially harmful materials
- Tri-clamp fitting into existing location
In this particular process pharmaceutical product in s/s containers is moved into a processing room where they need to be connected to a vacuum ejector.
The previous solution involved manipulating the containers into place, removing a plug from a 2” TC ferrule and then connecting the hose from the vacuum ejector into the same TC connection.
Routine risk analysis of the process revealed an undesirable risk of operator exposure to the products being handled.
The customer, a well known pharmaceutical manufacturer, asked Valvengineering to come up with a proposal for a valve to handle this procedure based on our successful Samplemaster sampling valve designed for vacuum driers and thereby eliminate the risk of contamination.
The new valve had to be a compact design, easy to operate and maintain and needed to fit into the same 2” tri-clamp mounting ferrules already in place on the host containers.
The project involved fitting 10 valves in total.
The solution -Key features:
- The basic layout of the Samplemaster valve is retained on a slightly smaller scale
- In order to minimise the travel required and therefore the overall dimensions the nose of the valve is designed similar to a needle valve. In this way a relatively short travel quickly leads to a large opening
- Full vacuum tightness is assured by o-rings. The body of the valve is machined from solid with minimal welding to achieve mechanical accuracy
- All product contact surfaces in AISI 316L mirror polished to full Pharma specification
- Operation of the valve is by means of a small handwheel
The completed valves have now been running for 8 months and delivered a fully satisfactory performance. Maintenance is simple and the sealing arrangements are robust.
Operator safety is significantly improved.
It is a simple well engineered design which has completely cured the original problem.