Cardinal has family business origins dating back over a century, and is now a thriving company with a workforce steadily approaching 200 in number. With its core business in the retail sector, Cardinal has earned a prestigious client list of top high street names, but re-locating its manufacturing facility and headquarters, along with investments in new plant and machinery, is providing opportunities to develop into new markets.
Dust Control Systems has looked after the company’s dust extraction requirements for over 20 years, and sales director Melvyn Bathgate, commenting on the contract to supply and install extraction plant at the new premises, says: “In our business it’s not often we have such a blank canvas to work with – Cardinal now has around 120,000ft2 of manufacturing space and, being involved from the start, we were able to offer some guidance on workshop layout and machine positioning to ensure maximum efficiency from the extraction system design.”
Energy-saving Ecogate greenBOX 12 controllers automatically open and close motorised gates as individual machines come on or off line
The overall layout of the manufacturing areas is extremely neat, providing a natural workflow and generous space for queuing jobs and movement of product between different machining operations.
As is the case for most fit-out companies, Cardinal manufactures a tremendous variety of products, utilising a multiplicity of machines; from classic spindle moulders and band saws, through to modern high-tech CNC machining centres. This diverse production requirement means that many machines are often used for short periods of time, and at irregular intervals.
Production staff at Cardinal are understandably delighted with the new spacious, dust-free workspace
In a traditional workshop environment, the extraction system operates at full power, throughout the manufacturing day, even if some machines are idle but, at Cardinal, DCS have installed an energy-saving Ecogate extraction system. With Ecogate, optimum extraction is automatically provided, for every individual production machine, but only when machines are being used.
DCS has installed FastClip ductwork throughout the factory and the ducting to each machine incorporates a motorised Ecogate damper which is activated when the machine comes online. The dampers open to allow extraction, and then close automatically when machines are powered down – the Ecogate system continuously adjusts extraction fan speed, in real time, to match machine usage.
“The potential for power saving is obvious”, says Melvyn. “Installing an Ecogate system can achieve an average power saving of over 60% when compared to a system with fans running all day at fixed speed.”
Cardinal’s system is controlled by two Ecogate greenBOX 12 units, with each greenBOX capable of autonomously controlling extraction for up to 12 different machines – DCS engineers conservatively estimate that energy bills will be 50% lower than they would have been with a fixed speed system.
DCS installed a 47,000m3/hr capacity Schuko ECOVAR VALIDUS filter unit at Cardinal
Providing filtration for all the production machines is an ATEX-certified, Schuko ECOVAR VALIDUS modular chain filter, with an air volume capacity of 47,000m3/hr provided by a flow-optimised cascade system of three 22kW fans. Dust-laden air extracted from the factory is drawn through anti-static, polyester needle-felt tubular filter bags – dust is continuously removed from the filter media by pulsed jets of compressed air, and a pneumatic-mechanical shaking system provides secondary cleaning.
The waste dust falls into the lower hopper section of the unit where the chain conveyor maintains a consistent flow of waste to be discharged, pressure-free, by means of a rotary valve. A waste transfer fan finally delivers the material to an enclosed container.
The installation also includes two ATEX-approved CARZ back-pressure flap valves; one in each of the two main ducts. In the unlikely event of a dust explosion, the valves prevent the effects of a pressure wave and flames travelling from the filter, back along ductwork, and into the factory. DCS have also provided additional fire safety monitoring and protection at Cardinal with the installation of a BS&B spark suppression system.
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