Expert interview with Kai Büßecker
Talking to our expert Kai Büßecker
Aliaxis has introduced FRIALOAD, a new solution for vacuum clamping of saddles. What is so special about this technology?
Vacuum technology is nothing revolutionary. It is already used in many areas. Just think of lifting plates and windowpanes. Or the vacuuming of food for preservation in the household. Vacuum technology also plays a role in thermos flasks. it serves as insulation to keep drinks hot or cold. In air-conditioning technology, it is used to degas pipes. There are many possible applications – and with FRIALOAD we are adding a new one.
What is a vacuum?
The word vacuum comes from the Latin word “vacuus”, which means empty. It describes the state of a gas in a volume at a pressure below atmospheric pressure at sea level of about 1 bar.
However, only about 80 percent is usable technically. So, we can reach a maximum of -0.8 to -0.9 bar. Always depending on the prevailing air pressure and geodetic altitude. The resultant forces lift, for example, heavy stone slabs weighing 120 kg.
How does FRIALOAD work? How does it use the vacuum to the user’s advantage?
Quite simple. First, the vacuum is generated with the battery-powered PUMP component. The device works fully automatically at the push of a button. It reliably evacuates the air from the system until the vacuum is reached. It then cuts back and maintains the vacuum as required. The FRIALOAD system is complemented by two so-called PLATES. With these, all saddle outlet dimensions from d 160 to d 400 can be sealed.
What are the advantages for the user on the construction site?
The advantages for the user are immense. First, he has a lightweight, battery-powered device that works independently of an external power source. Thanks to the so-called “window solution”, a pipe-encompassing clamping technique is no longer necessary. This means that only a small part of the pipe needs to be freely accessible. Expensive and cumbersome manual excavation is thus eliminated almost completely.
In addition, the user can orientate himself easily and clearly. The digital display of the PUMP shows him whether a vacuum of at least -0.6 bar has been reached. This guarantees the joining pressure, and he can start fusing.
So, the PUMP remains active during fusion?
Yes, because for a perfect fusion result, the joining pressure must be optimised not only during fusion, but also during the cooling phase. A vacuum is ideal for this as it distributes the forces evenly over the surface of the saddle. Once the process is finished, the user can perform a leak test directly on the construction site with the help of the vacuum. In this way, he receives immediate feedback and has the certainty that the fused seam has been executed correctly.
What does the future hold? Are there any other ideas at Aliaxis?
It is already possible today to clamp the complete SA VL / ASA VL d 225 saddle series with FRIALOAD. The advantages of this technology are clear, and so we also want to make the existing ASA TL sewage saddle series “vacuum-compatible” in the medium term. Many customers have asked us about this because of their good experiences, and we are happy to oblige.