Filter washes away coolant problems

Many manufacturers with machine shops spend vast amounts of time and money on replacing fluids and coolants used in their machining processes

Problem: . Keeping bacteria, fungal growth, foul odours and their associated problems away from machine operators can also be a headache and if not treated accordingly, could result in operator sickness and poor working conditions.

Solution: A water treatment company based in Herefordshire, Arbour Tech, has come up with a novel design of filter that combines four crucial stages into one unit for the reconditioning of machine tool coolants.

The contaminated machine coolant is drawn from the machine's sump by a pump and then passes first through a high efficiency bag filter that removes particulates down to 5 microns. The fluid then passes on to an efficient coalescing filter pack where free and tramp oils are separated from the emulsified coolant. These oils then float to the surface and are removed using an oil disk skimmer.

Finally, the coolant passes through Arbor Tech's patented silver-copper ionisation sterilising unit. This system introduces dissolved ions of silver and copper under controlled conditions. The silver is a natural biocide and the copper is a natural fungicide. After a resonance time in the system, the fluid flows back, under gravity, to the machine sump.

Applications: The device is creating quite a stir in the metalworking industry as it is mobile, easy to operate and engineers don't have to stop production while the reconditioning takes place. Environmentally, the unit is clean and friendly with reduced volumes of waste and no harmful biocides. According to Arbor Tech, current users of its filter have experienced cost savings in coolant replacement and waste disposal costs plus a reduction in machine downtime due to operator sickness (respiratory or skin problems) or poor working conditions. DP

Tom Shelley

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