Auto Valve Check Feature For Sorters

Auto Valve Check Feature For Sorters

Auto Valve Check from Key Technology helps assure that the ejection system on Tegra sorters is functioning properly, which improves food safety and product quality while reducing demands on labor, according to the company.


The sorter removes foreign material and product defects from the acceptable product stream using a close-coupled high-speed ejector system, which is made up of a series of air jets spaced 6 millimeters apart that span the width of the system. To assure proper functionality, the valve on each of up to 256 air jets must be checked periodically because contamination of a valve at the end of its one-year life can cause a full or partial value failure.

A value sticking in the open position causes yield loss as good product is removed and a valve sticking in the closed position can cause foreign material and defects to not be ejected as desired. The more frequently the valves are checked, the more quickly problems can be resolved.

Key’s new Auto Valve Check can be performed anytime the sorter is not running product such as during changeovers or sanitation. Initiated by the operator, the Valve Check tests each value and recognizes sluggish or partially open valves as well as failed valves. It delivers a list to the sorter’s user interface and remotely via the plant-wide network of the valves that are not fully operational. Armed with this data, the food processors can then perform any necessary value maintenance.

The new Auto Valve Check feature includes hardware and software enhancements that can be installed as an option on any new or in-the-field G6 Tegra sorter.

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