16. June 2015 | Keeping the pressure up at work with 15,000 bar
High pressure levels are growing in importance in the automotive industry, diesel engine construction and other high-tech fields. The pressurised systems, for instance injection systems for high-performance diesel engines, need to satisfy exacting requirements in terms of process and production security and durability. These marginal conditions invariably impact on the quality of the components and consequently the production and testing equipment, e.g. autofrettage systems. In response to the ever-increasing demands in this field, Maximator GmbH, one of the leading suppliers of systems and components for high-pressure equipment, has now expanded its VFT program to include the Ultra High Pressure VFT 15kbar series. The abbreviation VFT, which stands for valves, fittings, tubings, indicates that the series comprises tubes, valves, adapters and end pieces. The components, which are designed for operating pressures of up to 15,000 bar (217,000 psi) create a closed system and can be used individually or assembled as complete systems.
One typical application field for high-pressure technology comprises diesel injection systems in which a mixture of fuel with a pressure of up to 2,000 bar (2 kbar), in some cases even up to 2,500 bar and above, is sprayed as a mist into the combustion chamber. The pressure level needs to be high here in order to use the fuel efficiently and thereby increase the efficiency of the engines whilst also satisfying the statutory ecological regulations. However, even higher levels of pressure are required to produce the injection nozzles, rails and pipes, for example in autofrettage processes. These processes generate plastic deformations on the surface of the components; this in turn compresses the material, making it resistant to subsequent operating loads. Whilst in the past autofrettage pressure levels of 8,000 bar were used, for which 10-kbar autofrettage systems were adequate, nowadays new injection system pressure levels of 11, 12 or even 13 kbar in some cases are required in series production and development which necessitates autofrettage systems that are designed for up to 15 kbar.
The Ultra High Pressure VFT 15kbar series will therefore be highly interesting for companies that produce high-pressure systems for diesel engines, sensors for high-pressure equipment, components for hydroforming or other high-pressure systems. Maximator also uses the components of the Ultra High Pressure VFT 15kbar series in its own autofrettage systems. If necessary, existing systems can also be retrofitted at the owner's request.
The atmospheric pressure on the surface of the earth is 1 bar, the air pressure in correctly filled car tyres lies between 2 and 3 bar, a disposable drinks bottle made of PET will burst if the inner pressure reaches a range of between 7 and 8 bar. These figures give a vague idea of how much know-how is required to develop and build operationally-safe high-pressure systems. For the past 30 years, the technology company Maximator has been building its expertise in the development, production and testing of these kinds of components and systems, and is now also able to handle up to 25,000 bar. Central points of focus when developing the Ultra High Pressure VFT 15kbar series and its components included the selection of materials, the shaping and dimensioning of the components and how they were manufactured. The engineering behind the component connection points was optimised so that, when in operation, no constrictions can occur in the cross-section which would in turn cause reductions in the flow inside the pipe. The result is a significant increase in the effectiveness and reliability of fluid systems. In an extensive high-pressure test, Maximator was able to significantly increase the component service life compared to other conventional service lives. Due to the fact that the components are now more compact, they require less installation space which, in turn, simplifies installation.
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