Vacuum as a key technology
The demands placed by manufacturers and consumers on the quality, shelf life and resource efficiency of food and packaging processes are constantly increasing. This applies even more to such perishable products as for example meat or fish. Vacuum is considered as an enabling technology, contributing significantly to optimizing these processes. Therefore, Leybold developed the innovative NOVADRY, a new 100% oilfree, air-cooled pump, which will be launched at the IFFA.
No oil, less effort
"Many users in meat processing and packaging cannot actually tolerate vacuum pumps emitting oil," stresses product manager Niels Gorrebeeck. NOVADRY prevents such contaminations. That is why Leybold designed a 100% dry pump following hygienic criteria. This increases safety in applications such as tumbling, filling, vacuum packaging and thermoforming. An additional advantage of oil-free vacuum pumps is the lower cost of ownership, as less maintenance and spare part changes are required. In addition to the oil-free screw principle, Leybold has transferred proven components and principles from other vacuum pump series to the NOVADRY, including the bearing structure and the belt drive, which synchronizes the rotors in the NOVADRY
Air cooling reduces total cost of ownership
Normally, dry pumps are water-cooled, but the NOVADRY is air-cooled. This reduces operating costs by simplifying the installation and commissioning. "The total life cycle operational costs of the NOVADRY are lower than for oil-sealed vacuum pumps, this was a key driver during the pump development," explains Uwe Zöllig, Head of Business Development at Leybold
Broad range of applications
The NOVADRY also stands out due to its long uptime and robustness. Some competitor products lose their end-pressure or reduce pumping-speed due to wear of the inner coating, for example. The NOVADRY, however, achieves its performance over the entire pressure range and life cycle. This makes it ideal for simple applications, which emit low amounts of humidity, such as packaging of cold products. Moreover, the pump is also perfectly suited for more demanding processes with large amounts of water vapour, for example when hot meals with temperatures of up to 95°C have to be quickly cooled down by evaporative cooling. "In addition to the air/steam mixture coming from the process, the NOVADRY screw vacuum pump can also handle the anticipated contamination inside the gas flow very well. These are for example organic acids, spices, vinegar or other residues," summarizes Pierre Lantheaume, Business Development Manager Food & Packaging at Leybold.
Proven in real life
NOVADRY has successfully passed many qualifying field endurance tests in a wide range of food applications – tumbling, tray sealing and thermoforming. In all applications, it shows very good performance, the users reached fastest cycle times and low final pressure.
Leybold have succeeded in developing a forward-looking product which has the potential to set a new standard for the food processing and packaging markets. This is due not only to the absence of oil, but also to the NOVADRY's noise behaviour, the robust design and the low life-time costs.
Further information on the benefits of oil-free vacuum technologies for food applications will be available to visitors to IFFA in Frankfurt am Main at the Leybold GmbH stand: A 41 in Hall 11.
Vacuum as a key technology