Small and light proportional valves save energy

Lee Products has developed a miniature proportional valve that promises to be smaller, lighter and more energy efficient.

The valve uses a shape memory wire technology to vary flow and provide actuation. The design also eliminates the need for a magnet, coil wire, or steel armature typically used in traditional miniature solenoid valves. When a current is applied the shape memory alloy wire heats up and changes shape. This causes deformation and results in the valve opening up in proportion to the applied current. The development sets to benefit designers of portable, hand-held, battery powered instruments such as gas detectors, mass flow controllers, blood pressure cuff monitors, ventilators and oxygen concentrators as well as more general use on mediums which are clean or dry, non-corrosive, non-flammable, air or gases. The valves are constructed from elastomer FKM with wetted materials including Polycarbonate, brass, Elastomer, PEEK, 316 SS, Flexinol and Epoxy. The other key features of these 2-way, NC configuration valves are a weight of 1.2grams, maximum power consumption of 1.5 VDC, a current draw of 600mA (max).