Valves, Actuators & Pump Control


Redefining Industrial Automation with the new Festo Valve Terminal

April 2024 Valves, Actuators & Pump Control

In the dynamic and challenging world of Industrial Automation, application success hinges on the ability to optimise efficiency, adaptability, and ease of use. Festo, a leading name in the realm of automation technology, with its roots in Germany, is perpetually striving to transcend the limits of innovation by catering to the developing needs of industries worldwide. The company recently introduced its latest innovation in the form of the Valve Terminal VTUX. This innovation marks the beginning of a new era in valve terminals, with its features making it an impressive solution for the future.


Skye Prato.

“Since our groundbreaking introduction of the world’s first valve terminal back in 1987, we have developed numerous other terminals, each with its own specific focus. Thus, our adaptable Valve Terminal VTUX draws on years of experience and offers a highly expandable solution, enabling Festo customers to stay ahead of the ever-evolving technical changes in machine generations, from digitalisation, and cloud connectivity to machine design issues,” says Skye Prato, Business Unit Manager at Festo South Africa.

The valve terminal seamlessly amalgamates the advantages of three classic valve terminal ranges that have set waves in industry: CPV, MPA-L/S and VTUG, into a single user-friendly system. This solution offers an impeccable combination of cost-effectiveness and advantages, leaving no room for doubts. It features an intuitive, modular configuration of essential functions, superior performance, and effortlessly integrable capabilities, all of which can be easily incorporated into the smallest of spaces. In this article, we will explore the numerous additional benefits offered by this advanced Festo powerhouse, which truly sets it apart from the competition.

A closer look at the simplified disassembly and design of the VTUX from an expert

During a recent conversation with Prato, the Valve Terminal VTUX took centre stage, as he delved into the valve terminal’s disassembly process, providing valuable insights into its features, upgrades, and versatility for various applications.

Prato’s first point of emphasis was on the disassembling of the valve, highlighting its user-friendly design. With just a few screws and an allen key, users can easily access the valves, making maintenance and troubleshooting a breeze. The modular design allows for effortless removal and replacement of components, minimising downtime and maximising productivity.

One of the most noteworthy upgrades to this technology is its redesigned valves, which have been expertly engineered to deliver higher flow rates and improved efficiency. As a seasoned expert, he further explained how the valve design has been optimised to accommodate larger flows without increasing the footprint. This innovation allows for greater flexibility and scalability, ensuring seamless integration into a wide array of automation processes.

The ultimate slim and lightweight solution

Focusing on portability and convenience, Festo developers have put significant effort into reducing the size and weight of the VTUX valve terminals, a successor to the three previous classic valve terminals. This has resulted in a valve that offers excellent speed, payload and flow characteristics. These terminals are ideal for installation on handling systems or robots, where size and weight can significantly impact performance.

Systematic interlinking

With just one 10 mm valve and a working connection of up to 8 mm, high flow rates of up to 670 l/min can be achieved, thanks to this invention. In addition, VTUX offers a spectrum of interlinking plate widths tailored to varying flow demands while employing the same 10 mm valve. The two interlinking plate sizes for tubing diameters of 4 mm, 6 mm and 8 mm can be combined. Interlinking plates are available in four valves or a single valve configuration. The single connecting plates and modular tie rods enable a system that can be expanded as required to be set up within a short period of time.

High-speed communication

The streamlined, high-speed serial communication employed within valve terminals and base plates significantly minimises the need for extensive cabling and tubing, while facilitating seamless integration of functionalities and diagnostic capabilities. VTUX offers a wide array of interfaces supporting various bus systems and communication standards, including IO-Link, thus ensuring its adaptability, future readiness across diverse electrical networks and machinery setups. Whether deployed centrally in setups with numerous IOs and valve positions or used in decentralised valve terminals, the valve proves to be a versatile solution.

Moreover, when paired with the company’s AP system, it enables a harmonised integration of both centralised and decentralised configurations, enhancing overall system efficiency and performance. Another benefit of this model is that its modules can be arranged as required. With the inclusion of AP communication technology, connecting is now easier, even over long distances. This technology plays a crucial role in creating safety designs, predictive maintenance, and data exchange with the cloud in the Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT). This terminal is the most connected terminal of its generation thus far.

A customer-centric solution

The Festo Official Partner, Supplyrite, transformed its customer’s operations with the VTUX, leaving them highly satisfied with the results. The customer’s application involved controlling an unwinder for material into a Nappy Line using a non-Festo Valve Bank that had eight 3/2 way valves. The valve met all the key requirements with high availability, a compact size for seamless integration into the existing panel, and significant cost-effectiveness over the previously installed valves.

The VTUX Valve Terminal proved to be the ideal solution for the customer, thanks to its optimised valve design and innovative configuration. The 2x3/2 way configuration within a single valve not only streamlined installation but also enhanced efficiency, paving the way for improved automation processes.

Its solution was further enhanced by the VTUX’s superior connectivity features. The Sub-D Multipin design enabled significant improvements in panel organisation, providing a neater, more efficient setup and eliminating the need for individual wiring into local PLCs. The transition to this valve terminal offered numerous benefits for the customer, including the longevity of the product, which aligns perfectly with their phased change-out strategy for older valve banks. By standardising the terminal’s units, the customer ensured continuity in their automation processes and streamlined their business’s stockholding, resulting in cost savings and operational efficiencies.

Embracing the future of Industrial Automation with Festo

The Festo Valve Terminal VTUX represents a major milestone in the world of Industrial Automation. With its advanced features, streamlined design, and seamless integration capabilities, this solution is poised to redefine automation processes across industries. This valve with an array of advanced technologies is the perfect solution for businesses that are looking to enhance their operations, flexibility, and efficiency and stay ahead of the competition. Its ability to simplify maintenance procedures, enhance communication, and enable scalability makes it a game-changer in the industry.

The exceptionally modular VTUX can be adapted to application needs with simple modifications of the module to keep pace with changes in the machine. Partnering with Festo offers customers a unique opportunity to gain a competitive edge by leveraging the advancements of this valve, which is continuously setting new industry standards, explained Prato. Festo’s unwavering commitment to innovation and customer satisfaction through comprehensive solutions is unparalleled, making it an excellent choice for all industry-related needs worldwide. Their dedication towards innovation and customer satisfaction is evident through their unmatched comprehensive solutions in the industry.


Credit(s)



Share this article:
Share via emailShare via LinkedInPrint this page

Further reading:

Compact valve position indicator
Emerson Automation Solutions Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
Emerson’s new TopWorx DVR Switchbox is an entry-level addition to the DV Series of valve position indicators. It combines a durable resin enclosure, compact size, and a patented cam design that provides a reliable valve position feedback for water and wastewater systems, food and beverage production lines, and industrial utilities.

Read more...
Selection of two-port valves: an open and shut case
SMC Corporation South Africa Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
Little consideration is generally given to two-port valves because they are often perceived as simple devices that only open and close to control downstream fluid supply. Although this is mechanically true, choosing the optimal two-port valve for your application can make a big difference, saving space, weight and energy consumption.

Read more...
Dependable pumping for dewatering in hard rock mining areas
Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
Becker Mining’s Pumpor Vertical Spindle (PVS) pumps are hard at work on many mines throughout Africa, with many units installed recently in the Carletonville area, West of Johannesburg.

Read more...
Efficient, affordable solution for electrohydraulic pumps
Parker Hannifin - Sales Company South Africa Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
In the world of construction a revolution is changing the status quo, the electrification of small and efficient construction machinery.

Read more...
New pilot-operated relief valve
Emerson Automation Solutions Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
Emerson has introduced a pilot-operated relief valve for installation on pressurised bullet tanks used to store liquid propane and anhydrous ammonia. This type of pressure relief valve is typically installed on tanks fabricated by OEMs for end users, engineering firms, or contractor customers.

Read more...
Pulse valves for dust collection
Emerson Automation Solutions Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
In process manufacturing, especially hard mineral mining, dust particles are unavoidable. If this pervasive dust is not effectively removed, it can accumulate throughout mines, plants and other facilities, becoming hazardous to workers and equipment.

Read more...
Case History 191: The weakest link.
Michael Brown Control Engineering Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
Which is the weakest link in a control loop? The answer, without any doubt is that, in most cases, the final control element is the weakest link.

Read more...
High-flow solenoid valve
Emerson Automation Solutions Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
Emerson has introduced the new ASCO Series 327C solenoid valve, which features a direct-acting, high-flow design that provides superior flow-to-power ratio. It permits high flows at minimum power levels, making it ideal for use in power plants, refineries, and chemical processing facilities.

Read more...
Selection of two-port valves: an open and shut case
SMC Corporation South Africa Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
Little consideration is generally given to two-port valves because they are often perceived as simple devices that only open and close to control downstream fluid supply. Although this is mechanically true, choosing the optimal two-port valve for your application can make a big difference, saving space, weight and energy consumption.

Read more...
Emerson software optimises maintenance
Emerson Automation Solutions Valves, Actuators & Pump Control
Emerson has announced the Plantweb Insight Valve Health Application, a powerful software tool that combines Fisher control valve expertise with advanced analytic algorithms. The new app makes it possible for users to visualise an entire connected fleet of valves, while prioritising actions based on the health index of each valve.

Read more...