Air manifold or Instrument air distribution manifold is a pipe shaped chamber (manifold) with several branches of outlets for delivering instrument air to multiple consumers such as control valve, actuated valve or other pneumatic operated instrument.
The number of outlet of an instrument air distribution manifold may vary depend on the number of nearby pneumatic instrument or valve. Each outlet is fitted with block valve which could be of ball valve or needle valve type. Each outlet should have instrument tag number to which the outlet delivered the instrument air.
At the bottom of instrument air distribution manifold, a block valve is fitted for drain purpose. This drain valve is required during maintenance to bleed the built-up condensed liquid.
Also Read : What is Instrument Air?
An air manifold is a device used to distribute compressed air from a single source to multiple outlets or points of use. It acts as a central hub or distribution point for compressed air in a pneumatic system. The primary function of an air manifold is to ensure that the available compressed air is evenly distributed to different tools, machines, or pneumatic components.
Features of Air Manifolds
Here are some key features and aspects of air manifolds:
1. Inlet Connection: An air manifold typically has a single inlet connection where the compressed air is supplied. This connection is usually threaded or designed to accommodate a specific type of coupling or fitting for connecting to the air supply source, such as an air compressor.
2. Multiple Outlet Ports: Air manifolds feature multiple outlet ports where the compressed air is distributed to various devices or components. These outlet ports can be threaded or designed to accept specific types of fittings or connectors for connecting pneumatic hoses or tubing.
3. Equal Distribution: The air manifold is designed to ensure equal or proportional distribution of compressed air to each outlet port. This ensures consistent air pressure and flow to all connected pneumatic devices.
4. Individual Shut-off Valves: Some air manifolds have individual shut-off valves for each outlet port. These valves allow for independent control of the compressed air flow to each outlet. It enables the user to turn off or adjust the airflow to specific pneumatic devices without affecting the others.
5. Mounting Options: Air manifolds are often designed with mounting options for easy installation and integration into pneumatic systems. They may have mounting holes or brackets to secure the manifold to a suitable surface or structure.
6. Material and Construction: Air manifolds are typically made of durable materials that can withstand the pressures and conditions of compressed air systems. Common materials include aluminum, stainless steel, brass, or plastic, depending on the specific application requirements.
Air manifolds are widely used in various industries and applications where multiple pneumatic devices or components need a reliable supply of compressed air. Examples include pneumatic systems in manufacturing, automation, automotive assembly lines, HVAC systems, and pneumatic power tools.
By using an air manifold, the efficiency and performance of pneumatic systems can be improved by ensuring proper distribution of compressed air, minimizing pressure drops, and allowing for individual control of different pneumatic devices.