Screw - Unscrew valve
Device for automatic fitting and removal of valves in the cylinders. Thanks to the use of an electric gearmotor and a torque meter, the required tightening torque can be applied with the utmost precision, irrespective of the environmental and operating conditions. A bespoke software application makes it possible to set the torque to apply and display the number of valve revolutions. Cylinder loading and unloading are facilitated by a self-centring gripper and a table with automatic height-adjustment.
This fully automatic device is designed to clean the outside of the cylinder to remove debris, scale and surface rust. The cylinder is cleaned by a set of metal brushes equipped with longitudinal movement to cover the entire surface area. During the brushing phase the cylinder is abundantly sprayed with water to prevent the creation of dust and remove debris generated by the brushing action.
Internal shot blasting
This device performs internal shot blasting of the cylinders to remove scale and impurities. The cylinder is clamped by a self-centring gripper and overturned so that the neck is facing downward to allow the blast lance to penetrate inside and perform the shot blasting operation. The lance is equipped with a special A.I.M.E-designed nozzle to allow perfect cleaning of the cylinder shoulder and bottom.
Transport and internal washing
This fully automatic solution allows the interior of the cylinder to be cleaned to remove any residues and guarantee optimal maintenance. The cylinders enter the device on a stepping conveyor that allows loading and unloading operations to be performed extremely rapidly. A self-centring gripper clamps the cylinder and brings it to an upright position. Once positioned, a lance is inserted inside the cylinder, where it washes the interior surface with water at 60 bar. The device can be incorporated in a complete maintenance and testing line, or it can be used on a standalone basis.
This plant is hydraulic and fully automatic. Its function is to fill cylinders with water until reaching the “test pressure” value, which can be up to a maximum of 450 bar. The pressure value is kept constant in the cylinder for the time necessary to pass the approval test. When the process is completed, the cylinder is emptied and then picked up by the downstream stations.
Robot for automatic positioning of cylinders in the hydraulic test stations. Generally supplied in single units, the robot can be mounted in series and on rotary heads to serve multiple testing and emptying stations.
A.I.M.E. designs automated warehouse solutions to meet a wide range of storage and accumulation requirements in accordance with the size of the plant and the quantity of gas cylinders to be stored. The photo shows a storage system for 40,000 automotive CNG cylinders. Composed of a steel load-bearing structure, the system is divided into various tiers to guarantee placing and picking of tested and untested cylinders. Operators reach the different warehouse floors using stairs located at the two main access points. The automated warehouse can be easily incorporated in a testing plant or employed in a standalone solution.
Cutting device designed in compliance with the most advanced technology to allow correct disposal of reject cylinders (in compliance with the provisions of statutory legislation) guaranteeing the maximum safety for the operator and the surrounding area. Different technologies may be used based on the required cutting capacity (laser, plasma, or circular saw), and cutting geometry (e.g. rectangular channel, full circumferential cut, removal of neck, etc.).
Depalletizer and Palletizer
The depalletizer and palletizer, generally located at the testing plant entrance and exit station, allow the cylinders to be handled automatically and safely, dispensing with the use of forklift trucks and thus greatly reducing the risks of injury (e.g. caused by falling cylinders). Both stations feature a self-centring gripper designed to clamp the cylinders longitudinally and then pick them up from the pallet and place them on the infeed bench, or pick them up from the outfeed bench and place them on the pallet.
Cylinder handling robot
This special robot is composed of two self-centring grippers with 180° rotation, mounted on a central platform, which is likewise equipped with rotary motion. This arrangement makes it possible to rotate the cylinders to any position to perform various operations, including filling with water, automatic valve fitting or plugging, emptying and drying. Rotation of the central unit also makes it possible to transfer the cylinder from one station to the next one in the line, completely automatically. The entire unit can be equipped with a longitudinal and transverse movements so that the cylinder can be brought to any position required. This solution allows a very generous range of movement for the manipulator.