Actuated Ball Valves are used in applications where automated valve control is required. Unlike manual valves, which require manual turning with a handle or gearbox, actuated valves open and close valves automatically after receiving a control signal, with the help of an actuator. Depending on the system’s requirements and the availability of resources, this actuator might be an electrically controlled motor, a pneumatic device, or a hydraulic device to turn the valve for its operation. The differences in this power source result in different designs, each design has different advantages and disadvantages for specific applications. An actuator may include features such as position indicators and manual override in addition to the torque generating component. An “Electrically Actuated Ball Valve,” for example, is a Ball Valve with an electric actuator mounted on it.
Actuated Ball Valve
Table of Contect:
- What is an Actuated Ball Valve
- Types of Actuated Ball Valve
- How does Actuated Ball Valve Work
- Features and Benefits of Actuated Ball Valve
- Pneumatic Ball Valve Vs Motorised Ball Valve
- Actuated Ball Valve Vs Solenoid Valve
- Applications of the Actuated Ball Valve
What is an Actuated Ball Valve?
Actuated ball valves are sometimes fitted with an electric or pneumatic actuator instead of a manual handle operation to turn the valve on or off. They have a direct connection to the valve stem and can turn it a quarter of a turn.
Though actuators and ball valves are different components they are frequently used in conjunction. So, getting them as a package to ensure conformity is more advantageous. When you combine an actuator and a ball valve, you get an automatic ball valve that can be controlled remotely. The actuator and the ball valve are connected by a connection interface. The connection interface consists of a shaft, or stem, that connects the valve ball to the actuator, and a flange that bolts the actuator to the valve. A brand-specific actuator can be installed on a compatible brand-specific valve. Different ball valves and actuators, on the other hand, can be used as long as they comply with the same standard, such as the ISO 5211.
Types of Actuated ball Valve.
There are two main types according to their movement:
- In double-acting actuators, air or liquid is delivered to both sides of the piston, with one side having a greater pressure than the other, resulting in the movement needed to actuate the valve. The pneumatic or hydraulic force of the air or liquid energy is used to open and shut the valve in this configuration.
- Spring-return or single-acting actuated valve only has one side of the piston supplied with air or liquid, and the energy to move the systems is provided by a spring on the opposite side. The pneumatic or hydraulic pressure of the fluids is used to open or close the valve when a spring affects the opposite motion.
Pneumatic Actuated Ball Valve
For the operation of an actuated ball valve, a variety of power supplies are available. Pneumatic, hydraulic, and electric actuators are the types of power sources available. A company should analyze which kind of actuated ball valve will be best for their needs. A pneumatically actuated ball valve is driven by air pressure, while a hydraulically actuated ball valve is propelled by hydraulic fluid pressure. Electric actuated ball valves are controlled by electricity.
- Pneumatically Actuated Ball valve: The operating power in pneumatic actuators is generated by compressed air. These actuators are quick to react but are not suitable for high-pressure environments due to the compressibility of the gas. Pneumatic actuators are available in spring-return and double-acting configurations.
- Hydraulic actuators exert force on the mechanical components of the actuator by using oil. Because the liquid is not compressible, it can exert a tremendous amount of force but is usually limited in acceleration and speed. Hydraulic actuators come in spring-return and double-acting configurations.
- A motorized valve is a type of valve that employs an electric motor to open and close its mechanisms. This valve is best suited for very large valve types or remote fluid monitoring systems such as aircraft dicing, agricultural irrigation, and automated fire prevention. The motorized valve is also well suited to remote flow control applications involving continuous valve operation.
Motorised Actuated Ball Valve
How does Actuated Ball Valve work?
The working of an actuated ball valve is similar to its manual counterpart but in this valve, an actuator is mounted instead of a lever to drive the stem (which is connected to the ball) which in turn, rotates the ball to provide the desired operation. As the actuator receives a signal from remote control location depending on its position it will rotate to start or stop the flow of fluid through the ball valve.
An actuated ball valve can be designed to change positions based on sensor readings. A sensor can detect and report changes in temperature or pressure. The actuated ball valve is triggered when the sensor reaches a predetermined point set by machine management staff. This could perform important functions, such as keeping more process fluid from reaching an area that is already full. When the sensor detects that the area is available for more fluid, it activates the actuated ball valve, which changes position to allow process fluid to reach that location.
Features and benefits of Actuated Ball valve.
An actuated ball valve is highly reliable and can completely prevent flow from entering a specific pipe or area. These valves are simple to maintain and can be personalized to the needs of a specific factory. For example, an actuated ball valve can be ordered in a specific size to fit a factory’s pipes. Furthermore, actuated ball valves can be made of a variety of materials with varying capabilities. An actuated ball valve may be designed to handle high or low pressure and temperature conditions. These ball valves are also very durable, and a variety of materials can be specified to help ensure durability in a specific application.
Actuated ball valves are extremely useful in terms of both production and safety. Parts will break and potentially injure nearby workers if a piece of machinery attempts to continue operation when pressure or temperature levels are dangerously high. The detectors and actuated ball valves that respond to those sensors enable a machine to self-regulate and adapt to these conditions before they become catastrophic. When used correctly, an actuated ball valve can reduce production loss, repair time, and injury by providing a rapid response when needed. All of these advantages should persuade businesses and industries to incorporate an actuated ball valve into their design.
Pneumatic Ball Valve vs Motorized Ball valve.
- Pneumatic actuation provides a faster rotation speed than a motorized valve.
- The life span of a pneumatic valve is higher as it has fewer components and maintenance is easier while a motorized valve has more complex components which makes their maintenance harder and in turn reduces life.
- Precision accuracy of a motorized valve is higher as in a pneumatic valve there is a chance of leaks and pressure fluctuations.
- Pneumatic valve has a low initial cost but the operating cost is high while Motorised valve has a high initial cost but the operating cost is less.
- Energy consumption is high in the pneumatic valve as compared to the motorized valve.
Actuated ball valve vs Solenoid Valve.
- A solenoid valve is triggered by energizing an electrical coil, which induces magnetism and allows an iron plunger to move from side to side. Small holes revealed by the moving plunger allow the medium to travel in the desired direction. An actuated valve employs motors or air to turn the valve; large valves often use solenoid valves to redirect air pressure to an actuator to open them.
- Actuated valves are typically actuated by motors, which are more resistant to voltage shock. Solenoid valves, which open and close quickly, are typically used when the flow and pressure are low and a high switching frequency is required.
- A solenoid valve is commonly used to start or stop the flow. An actuated valve, on the other hand, is typically a motor and gearbox that can control the flow to a more infinite adjustment.
Applications of the Actuated ball valve.
Ball valves with actuators introduce into the systems to control valve opening and closing. To measure flow, they are often equipped with gauge monitors or flow meters. Industrial processes, manufacturing factories, chemical handling, food, and beverage equipment, mining operations, power plants, and the energy sector uses actuated ball valves. They’re also used in wastewater treatment, municipal treatment centres, clean water generation, aquariums, aquatics and animal care, chemical production, metals and plating operations, and chemical synthesis.
Actuated ball valves are used in almost every application where the flow of a fluid must be stopped, started, or controlled remotely. This article is only a summary of the various types of actuated ball valves; the design variations are as numerous as the applications.