The control unit incorporates all safety, monitoring and operating components. It includes the connections for the liquid CO2 and compressed air. The liquid CO2 supply of the manual CO2 snow blasting machines is mostly supplied using CO2 cylinders (content up to 37.5 kg) or CO2 bundles (content 450 kg), each with a dip tube. The compressed air supply is provided either via the house network or via a screw-type compressor. A power supply is not necessary. The compressed air supply hose is attached using a safety coupling on the control unit as well as on the supply connection. The length of the hose is variable as individual hoses can be connected to each other without any loss of power. The connected hoses can reach several hundred metres. The liquid CO2 supply hose is equally flexible in length and can be extended as required. Due to the high supply pressure of the CO2 cylinders or bundles (50 to 60 bar), the machines can be implemented when there is a long distance to cover to the control unit and/or a great height difference, without any loss of power.
The hose package connects the control unit with the blasting pistol. It is comprised of a high-pressure CO2 pipe, a special compressed air hose, pneumatic control lines, an earthing cable, a flexible casing and connectors for both the control unit and the blasting pistol. The hose package can be completed in almost any length without any loss in power and can be subsequently lengthened.
The blasting pistol is the technological centre of the CO2 snow blasting process. This is where the production of CO2 snow particles takes place and the apportioning of these particles into the compressed air flow. The apportioning of the CO2 is also possible with the blasting pistol. In addition, there is an ergonomic hand grip with a safety lever on the blasting pistol. The blasting pistol is thermally insulated, so that contact with cold surfaces and condensation is avoided.
Nozzles are available either round or flat or customized as required. The fluidic flow of all nozzles is optimized. In addition, all nozzles are made of an impact resistant, thermally insulated special synthetic material. Wear and tear of nozzles does not occur. The flat nozzles allow a blasting width of more than 100 mm.
Automated CO2 snow blasting equipment has been realized in continuous operation (24 hours per day, 365 days per year). By using a control cabinet, it is possible to control and monitor one or more CO2 snow blasting nozzles. The equipment is designed and manufactured according to customer requirements.
The liquid CO2 is supplied using a low pressure tank, a booster pump and an insulated CO2 ring circuit. The compressed air supply is provided either via the house network or via a screw-type compressor. The ControlCabinet includes state-of-the-art technology for the necessary safety components, operating controls, process controls and monitoring processes. The CO2 snow blasting nozzle is fitted with a robotic adapter and when this interface is used, it is possible to either fix the machine securely or more flexibly, adapt it to a portal or axle robot. The liquid CO2 has a temperature of approx. -20 °C when a low pressure tank is used. Therefore all pipe lines and hoses are thermally insulated. The booster pump and the insulation guarantee that the CO2 is always liquid even with long supply lines. The tank content is monitored completely automatically and when necessary will be filled from a gas supplier’s fuelling vehicle. This supply concept keeps operating costs low.
If the amount of CO2 used is minimal then the supply generally can be completed using either CO2 cylinders or bundles with a dip tube. Only in this case can an automation be realized with manual standard equipment and an AutoControl unit.