Some time ago, several hundred companies were asked which of their tasks they considered the most important. The result - the top priority was efficient production. But what exactly does this mean? Efficient production means in practice low machine costs, high and predictable quality and high cost-effectiveness, speed of reaction and equipment availability. This is achieved above all through mechanisation and automation, or in other words through the use of technical devices and processes that partially or completely replace the functions of human beings. Industrial pneumatics has come to play a major role within this process, and the range of applications of industrial pneumatics is constantly expanding. The reason for this is that pneumatics can offer a virtually seamless range of proven optimised components, available in closely-spaced sizes and specifications to allow the rapid construction of devices on a modular principle.
Furthermore, everything that users need, up to and including computer-supported planning aids, are available from a single source. It is naturally also interesting to consider the uses to which pneumatic components are put and the problem solutions in which they play a leading role. To describe these in full would scarcely be possible, not even in a series of books containing thousands of case studies. The 99 examples in this book, however, demonstrate what pneumatics can do by showing solutions in simplified form in a way that we hope will fire the imagination and encourage new ideas. This book is accordingly aimed at practical technical users, those responsible for rationalisation and also those who are taking their first steps in the world of pneumatics. The book is not a collection of patent recipes, since every problem has its own environment, often a highly specific one, into which the solution must fit. If this collection succeeds as an entry-level guide to rationalisation with compressed air and vacuum, then it will have fulfilled its purpose and will have shown that it is not just hot air (compressed or otherwise)
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