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Dürr Upgrades EcoBell Atomizer: Higher Energy Efficiency with Optimized Turbine Componentry

Bietigheim-Bissingen, February 05, 2016 – Dürr uses the EcoBell3 – a highly efficient generation of atomizers – to apply electrostatic coatings with all paints and lacquers. The turbine that drives the flexible bell disk/shaping air ring system has since been optimized further. Depending on the application, the new turbines are now capable of using up to 40 percent less compressed air. What is really impressive about the new system, however, is that upgrade kits are also available for the predecessor system – the EcoBell2.

The terms “high efficiency” and “highest efficiency” distinctly characterize the two state-of-the-art turbines that make the new EcoBell generation even more economical while delivering the same power. To this end, optimized vanes and nozzles ensure that less compressed air and, thus, less energy is used when paint is applied. Which variant is right for which application all depends on the specific requirements defined by the customer. The high-efficiency turbine, for example, which can turn over up to 70,000 times per minute, offers exceptional performance while at the same time consuming approximately 20 percent less compressed air than previous models.

Experience has shown, however, that atomizers are operated in the 50,000 rpm speed range in 90 percent of applications involving paint flow rates of up to 600 milliliters. Under these conditions, which are common for interior painting of car bodies and other applications, the highest efficiency turbine achieves compressed air savings of approximately 40 percent.

The operation of the turbine was just one of the improvements made as the mechanical connection between the bell disk and turbine was also optimized, thereby extending the service life of the disk assembly. “The high efficiency solution that incorporates this technology makes it possible to cut compressed air and spare parts costs by approximately €1,500 per year, while the highest efficiency solution can achieve an annual savings of up to €2,000 – for each robot!

When one considers the fact that our customers operate up to 100 atomizers along each painting and coating line, the savings potential becomes all the more apparent, and the cost of upgrading is fully recuperated in just one year”, explains Dr. Hans Schumacher, president & CEO of the Dürr Application Technology Division. “By following this strategy, we promote the further use of existing systems not only in terms of cost as considerable amounts of energy are saved, but also from an environmental perspective, since less energy used also lowers CO2 emissions.”

Long Service Life and Environmental Compatibility
Thanks to the greatly reduced supply of compressed air required by the EcoBell3, the new turbines it integrates operate at a compressor output level that consumes up to 3,500 kWh (high efficiency) and 5,670 kWh (highest efficiency) less power per robot, which equates to up to 3.3 tons of carbon dioxide saved each year. Efficient operation is only one impressive aspect of the turbines, however. By plating them with a robust nickel surface coating, the engineering company from Bietigheim-Bissingen also reliably protects the turbine assemblies from electrical corrosion, which in turn extends their service life. Newly purchased and existing atomizers alike profit from the new technology. “There are several thousand EcoBell2 and EcoBell3 systems currently in use at customer locations around the globe. These atomizers can now be upgraded to further streamline and sustain their production operations”, affirms Dr. Schumacher.