The manufacturing processes of various industries include a requirement for loading and unloading raw materials, conveying intermediate and end products between machines and plants or systems. If compressed air is used during the conveying process, then this is conveying air. Since this is often integrated in the process, it is also sometimes referred to as process air.
An example of an application field for conveying air is transporting bulk materials because bulk goods are frequently transported via pneumatic conveying by pressure or vacuum conveying processes. The requirements for the compressed air quality depend on the type of bulk material and additional processing involved. Powdery or granular substances are often processed which frequently have hygroscopic properties (water attracting). If the compressed air which is implemented as a conveying medium is not dry enough, then it will cause lump formation. The advantage of conveying with compressed air is that the pipework is sealed and dust generation is therefore prevented. Furthermore, the pneumatic systems are variable and almost maintenance free.
Moreover, products conveyed with compressed air are lifted off the conveyor surface. A so-called air bearing is created. The main benefit hereby is precision e.g. no stick-slip effect, as well as movement without friction. Therefore aero static air bearings are utilised for alignment and movement in e.g. measuring machines (e.g.: a rheometer) but also for uncomplicated transport for heavy loads.