Each industry application uses valves to control processes and fluid flow by opening and closing. Modern valves come with sophisticated manual or automatic mechanisms for regulating pressure and the flow of fluid. Sanitary ball valves are sanitary replacements parts commonly used in industries that require a high level of sanitation. These valves use a movable spherical disk to allow or block fluid flow.
How to Operate a Ball Valve
Rotating the spherical disc will direct the flow of fluid through the port. The port gets aligned with the fluid pathway. Rotation can be performed either manually or automatically. When done manually, a handle can be used to control the port position of the valve. But, automatic valves allow the ball to change position by itself. In manual control, the handle is often aligned with the port position and the operator just need to turn the handle through 90 degrees so the port will be oriented to the fluid path. To close the valves, the port position must be reversed.
Ball valves are made for applications that demand clean or hygienic processing. Often, they are used in chemical, food, dairy, beverage, biopharmaceutical industries. They are deemed sanitary as they limit crevices and cavities that could trap media and encourage bacterial activity. Also, sanitary ball valves use but-weld, tri-clamp end, flanges, and threads to tightly shut them off to prevent contamination from external sources.
When buying sanitary valves for different sterile applications, it is important to take into account what the valve is for and its specifications like operating temperatures, diameter, material temperature, and the working pressure. Measuring the diameter can be taken across the cylindrical port. The majority of sanitary piping measurements are taken in tube outside diameter (OD). Working pressure refers to the pressure level the valve is meant to function in. The operating temperature is the temperature range in which the valve functions well. Lastly, material temperature refers to the fluid temperature that can be handled by the valve seat.
Materials Used in Making the Valves
Sanitary ball valves can be made of metal or plastic. The metal and metal alloys commonly used include steel, brass, copper, iron, cast iron, stainless steel, and steel. Some suppliers also offer duplex and super duplex ball valves for applications that require corrosion-resistant valves. Meanwhile, plastic ball valves are PVC, glass-reinforced nylon, PVDF, and CPVC. They are suitable for low temperatures and pressure applications. Moreover, sanitary valves can have electric, pneumatic, hydraulic, or motor actuators. A pneumatic actuator is stimulated by the air pressure. Hydraulic actuators are controlled b the liquid pressure.