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Ultrasonic Cleaning Systems

FAQs

How does ultrasonic cleaning work?

Ultrasonic cleaning is a process in which high frequency sound waves and a cleaning agent are used to gently clean various items. We fix what are called 'transducers' to the base of a cleaning tank which force this base to 'flex' up and down at a pre-determined rate. The rate of this flexure is tens of thousands of times a second.

This flex is far too fast for the water to flow and the formation and collapse of millions of bubbles, or vacuum chambers, occurs. This, in effect, sucks out dirt and contamination on a microscopic level due to the implosion of the vacuum chamber on the surface structure of the item being cleaned.

The size and strength of these bubbles is controlled by the frequency employed. The higher the frequency, the smaller the bubble and therefore, the cleaning action is gentler.

What can you clean?

Pretty much anything! Any component made from a solid structure could be cleaned in an ultrasonic system from Alphasonics. We manufacture systems for use in the Print, Medical, Aerospace, Automotive and Engineering industries, amongst many others.

The majority of our systems are made to clean either ceramic anilox rollers from a flexographic printing press or surgical equipment.

What if my requirements are very specific?

We wouldn't have it any other way. Every Alphasonics system is made to the exact specifications of our customers. From concept, to design, to manufacture, everything is handled in house by our experienced and highly trained staff. We ensure we know absolutely everything about what you need from your cleaning system and ensure it's there for you.

How long does it take?

This entirely depends on how much contamination is to be removed and how often you clean. Typically, a cycle in a cleaning system from Alphasonics is 15 minutes but again, we can change this to whatever works best for your unique requirements.

Can parts be damaged in an Alphasonics system?

Absolutely not. In fact, we guarantee that you will not damage anything in an Alphasonics system. We use sophisticated technology, developed in house at Alphasonics HQ, to ensure that focused points of the ultrasonic process, called 'hot and cold spots', are eradicated. This makes the ultrasound equally distributed throughout the tank, meaning damage is impossible.

To put this in perspective, the majority of our systems are made for cleaning very delicate parts. Even anilox rolls, which are laser engraved with thousands of cells that are microns in size, are 100% safe in an Alphasonics system. We offer an assurance that should ultrasonic damage occur as a result of our technology, we would replace the part concerned. We've never had to do this.

We have over 20 years worth of experience of cleaning aniloxes and other very delicate parts with an unblemished record. The facts speak for themselves!

Do I need a detergent?

Yes. You will require a cleaning agent to assist. In most cases, chemistry is only added to an Alphasonic's system between 10% and 20%. This means consumable costs are extremely low.

We also offer optional filtration systems that can greatly extend the lifetime of the chemical.

How often do I need to change detergent?

This will depend on how much contamination you are removing and for what purpose.

For anilox roll cleaning, with daily use you'd get 3-4 weeks without filtration or 6-8 weeks with it.

If you're cleaning surgical equipment, which can be heavily contaminated with dangerous fluids that could even be infectious, you would require a tank change after every cleaning cycle.

It all depends on what you require.

What are Alphasound and Betasound?

Alphasound and Betasound are two unique technological developments from Alphasonics.

Firstly, Alphasound is the ability to choose two different frequencies depending on the task at hand. This comes into its own in anilox roll cleaning. Developed in 2000, this uses a higher frequency setting; allowing for the safe and effective cleaning of high screen aniloxes on a regular basis, which isn't possible with other systems on the market. This, combined with an 'enhanced frequency sweep' which regulates the ultrasonics, ensures the user is guaranteed not to damage parts in an Alphasonics systems.

Betasound takes the concept further and uses two different frequencies at the same time along with a frequency sweep. High and low frequency pairings are designed for parts that are even more delicate than usual, such as ultra high screen anilox rolls.

Alphasonics are proud to have brought these technologies to the market. Beware of imitations!

What is Active Cavitation?

Again, another uniquely different technology developed by Alphasonics. We have found a way to make cleaning more effective and faster than ever before.

Active Cavitation creates disturbances in the tank which increases and enhances the formation and collapse of the vacuum bubbles that give the cleaning effect. This not only enhances the cleaning on the surface of the part being cleaned, but also causes a chemical reaction which speeds up the cleaning process.

This is unique to Alphasonics and is a patented technology. Accept nothing but the original and best.

What happens to the waste water?

Every Alphasonics system is provided with plumbing designed to make the draining of fluid into waste receptacles easy and safe. Pump and filtration systems are optional which can mean disposal does not have to occur so often. However, eventual disposal will entirely depend on what is to be disposed of.

If the contamination is safe to dispose, we can provide a neutralising agent to render the cleaning chemical safe. However, if the contamination is unsuitable for this disposal, for example, UV ink waste, as with any other supplier/method this will require removal by a professional service provider.

What makes Alphasonics different?

We are the sole manufacturer of our equipment and have developed the technology we use ourselves. We do not subcontract work or buy part built units which are then retro fitted with other components. We design and manufacture everything in-house with the customer in mind. There is no 'one size fits all' policy. We will work for you to build the very best system for your needs and create a relationship with you to assist you moving forward. Our promises to you are set out in our Customer Charter which can be found here.