A closer look at the benefits
The benefits of using an integrated system design concept are many. Reduction in component connections minimizes the risk of leaks, which, in turn, minimizes the need for servicing and reduces customer returns and warranty costs.
Subsystem assemblies make assembly of a larger system much easier, whether in the field, or on the production floor. With fewer connections to make, it takes less time to install, and often results in a more secure installation.
A custom manifold assembly can be designed to make servicing easier for the overall fluid control system. Easy access for strainers or filters can be designed in to ensure that recommended system maintenance procedures are easily followed. Critical component locations can be pre-designated for ease of adjustment or servicing. Maintenance or repair on one part of the system will also be less likely to disturb other parts of the system.
It is no longer unusual for the system design engineers to also be responsible for managing the supply chain for their designs -- having to buy, stock, and manage the inventory necessary to prototype the system themselves. It's especially helpful in these cases to be able to work with the supplier’s engineers to design an integrated system solution that will perform to the required system specification. This approach allows the design engineer to focus on the overall system design and results in significant time and cost savings.
The last word
An integrated system design is a cost- and time-effective solution for engineers who design complex, multifunctional fluid control systems and assemblies, especially if there is a significant production volume. The benefits include a simpler and smaller design, fewer connections and reduced leak points, and minimized installation and service time. The upfront cost of the manifold assembly is justified by the savings achieved through eliminating the sub-system assembly time, simplifying installation into the larger system, minimizing supply chain effort and component costs, while ensuring the most reliable operation.
Bill Fleischer is product manager with Parker Fluid Control Division.