Ultrasonic Cleaning Solutions from Elma

Cleaning Solutions for Ultrasonic Cleaning Tasks

The old saw “the key to good work is using the right tool for the job” applies equally well to ultrasonic cleaning jobs. In this case the “tool” is selecting one of the many ultrasonic cleaning solutions available to assure the desired results. As you will learn here, there are many cleaning solution formulas available.  This post will help you make the right choice(s). There may be instances where you may need more than one formula.

The Ultrasonic Cleaning Solutions Market

Definitions might seem confusing.  In some cases cleaning solutions are called chemicals, in other cases “soaps.”  In any case, these solutions represent a major market.  According to a Dataintelo report “The ultrasonic cleaning chemicals market was valued at USD 2.1 billion in 2018.  The report projects a “CAGR of 4.4% during 2019-2030.” 

First Step in Cleaning Solutions Selection

To help assure best results, you must be aware of these critical points.

  • What is being cleaned?  As you might surmise the requirements to clean engine and drive train assemblies, plastic injection molds, PCBs, and surgical instruments vary substantially.
  • What are the contaminants?  Gross deposits of grease and grime; burned on residues, oils, flashing and grease; solder flux, blood and other contaminants require different procedures.
  • What is the product made of?  Aluminum, steel, glass, plastic, and composites are examples. (Note that chromium-plated products are not suitable for cleaning with ultrasonic energy.)
  • Product configuration is important.  Simple?  Complex?  Characterized by blind or narrow holes?
  • Are there post-cleaning requirements?  Some may require one or more rinsing steps to remove cleaning bath residues either for sanitation reasons or to prepare the product for further finishing steps such as painting, plating or powder coating. 
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Selecting Ultrasonic Cleaner Frequency

Selecting Ultrasonic Cleaner Frequency

Ultrasonic frequency is a key selection criterion when operating an ultrasonic cleaner.  The correct frequency yields superior results in terms of efficiency, thoroughness, and in certain cases avoiding damage to parts being cleaned. Moreover, there are projects where more than one frequency is recommended, or when you are cleaning a variety of products calling for different ultrasonic frequencies.

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Maintain Plastic Injection Molds with Ultrasonic Cleaning

Ultrasonic Cleaning Plastic Injection Molds

The global plastic injection molding machine market was valued at $10.4 billion in 2022 and projected to grow to $12.4 billion by 2027 according to a Markets and Markets report.  Unrecognized in such reports are the importance and costs of plastic injection molds that support this growth and the role of ultrasonic cleaning in plastic injection mold maintenance.

Ultrasonic Cleaning and Injection Mold Maintenance

According to Rex Plastics, “A small and simple single cavity plastic injection mold usually costs between $1,000 and $5,000. Very large or complex molds may cost as much as $80,000 or more. On average, a typical mold that produces a relatively simple part small enough to hold in your hand costs around $12,000.”

For cost reasons alone injection mold maintenance should figure high on a list of priorities for companies involved in producing injection-molded parts.  Here you’ll learn how ultrasonic cleaning plastic injection molds preserves investments without causing wear or the use of harsh chemicals.

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Woman Cleaning Sieves

Clean Lab Test Sieves with an Ultrasonic Cleaner

Ultrasonic energy proves highly effective in removing particles trapped in fine mesh lab test sieves. Ultrasonic cleaning is fast, avoids potential damage caused by brushing, and can achieve 100% particle removal.  This post describes two ultrasonic cleaner configurations to clean test sieves and find additional utility in food and pharmaceutical research labs.  

Clean 4 Sieves With an Electric Sieve Rotation Holder

The electrically powered SRH 4/200 sieve rotation holder offered by Elma ultrasonic cleaners holds up to 4, 200-mm (8 inch) lab sieves.  Clamped in a slightly canted position they are rotated into and out of a cleaning solution in an ultrasonic unit described below.  Because the screens are canted, particles fall to the bottom of the ultrasonic cleaner tank.

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Ultrasonic Cleaner Capacity Selection Tips

One of the first if not the first point in selecting an ultrasonic cleaner is the ultrasonic cleaner capacity.  By capacity we mean not the size of the ultrasonic cleaner itself but the size, or dimensions, of the cleaning tank. That’s where cleaning action takes place.  If the parts you want to clean can’t be completely immersed in the ultrasonic cleaning solution, you have a problem.  This post helps you calculate your ultrasonic cleaner capacity.

Two Basic Approaches to Ultrasonic Cleaner Capacity

You can specify an ultrasonic cleaner in terms of cleaning solution capacity or its ability to completely immerse parts being cleaned.  A simple illustration:  There’s not much depth to a gallon of water in an 8 quart baking pan.   Contrast that depth to a gallon of water in a gallon water jug.

With that in mind, let’s proceed.

Fortunately, ultrasonic cleaners are manufactured in a tremendous variety of sizes.  And as suggested, there are two approaches to sizes when speaking in terms of ultrasonic cleaner capacity.

First, “size” can be defined in terms of the tank’s cleaning solution capacity.  Second, “size” can be defined in terms of tank dimensions, or its ability to accommodate parts being cleaned.

As you can see by checking our page on the Elmasonic E Plus series, there is a selection 9 tank capacities from 0.25 to 7.5 gallons, all with differing tank dimensions, offered in this series.  Industrial-sized units such as the xtra ST series can hold up to 67.4 gallons.  Larger-capacity units are also available.

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Sample Preparation in an Ultrasonic Bath

Sample Preparation in an Ultrasonic Bath

Sample preparation to transform analytes into measurable form can involve complex processes. It is important that the transformation or extraction process avoids chemical degradation that can be caused by excessive heat or mechanically induced damage. Sample preparation is defined by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) as the process used to transform analytes into a measurable form. 

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Why you Need an Ultrasonic Dental Cleaner

Ultrasonic Dental Instrument Cleaner

An ultrasonic cleaner is one of options recommended by the CDC to clean reusable dental instruments prior to sterilizing. Uniform sonication in an ultrasonic dental instrument cleaner provides added assurances that blood and tissues are thoroughly removed before sterilization. More on this below but first,

How Uniform Sonication Cleans Dental Instruments

Uniform sonication assures technicians in the central processing area that their dental instruments receive “equal treatment” regardless of their position in the ultrasonic cleaning bath.  An example of a dental instrument cleaner providing this advantage is the Elmasonic P30SE available from Elma. 

Research at Elma disclosed that key impediment to uniform sonication is interference due to the tank drain duct found on most benchtop ultrasonic cleaners.  This was visually demonstrated in a drain-equipped unit: ultrasonic cleaning action on the drain side of the tank was not nearly as vigorous as on the opposite side. 

Based on this, the 0.75 gallon P30SE has no drain assuring that powerful cleaning action on reusable dental instruments is uniform during the cleaning cycle.  The process is called homogeneous sonication.

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How to Clean and Restore Mobile Devices and PCBs

Restore Mobile Devices with Ultrasonic Cleaners

The consumer electronics market size was valued at over USD 1 trillion in 2020 and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of more than 8% from 2021 to 2027, according to a Global Market Insights report.   It defines electronics as computers, laptops, mobile devices, smart wearables, TVs, appliances, etc.  Ultrasonic electronics cleaners contribute to reliable operation from manufacturing through servicing these products.

Common to most if not all consumer electronics products is the ubiquitous printed circuit board or PCB.  That’s why PCB fabricators or those who sell or service equipment incorporating PCBs and other delicate electronic components include an ultrasonic electronics cleaner in their equipment inventory.

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Elmasonic Select Series Header

Introducing the Elmasonic Select Line: Programmable Cleaning, Five Ultrasonic Modes

Elmasonic Select ultrasonic cleaners available from Elmaultrasonic feature 5 ultrasonic modes to simplify task setting and supervision for parts cleaning and maintenance, sample prep, and solvent degassing plus up to 4 commonly used programs for quick call up and reproducible results. 

  • 5 ultrasonic modes for powerful, rapid, thorough, reproducible cleaning and mixing
  • 3 cleaning cycle parameters:  mode, temperature to 80⁰C/176⁰F, and timer to 6 hours
  • Store up to 4 programs for quick call-up and reproducible results
  • Brilliant digital display clearly shows all operating parameters
  • Audio/visual signal at cycle completion
  • 11 tank sizes from 0.7 to 24 gallons
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Industrial Ultrasonic Cleaners

An Industrial Ultrasonic Cleaner Specification Guide

The ultrasonic cleaning equipment market is expected to exhibit a 3.3% CAGR by 2027 backed by increasing global adoption of industry 4.0 (the 4th Industrial Revolution), according to a report in  Fortune Business Insights™  “Industrial Ultrasonic Cleaning Machine Market” 2022 focuses on short-term and long-term trends affecting the market landscape.  Industrial ultrasonic cleaners play an important role in the economy.  This post will help you pick a unit that best meets your requirements.

What is an “Industrial” Ultrasonic Cleaner?

Industrial ultrasonic cleaners are defined by task, not size.  Industrial sonic cleaners include bench and tabletop units all the way up to multi-gallon floor mounted units. 

It’s what these units must do vs. their size that’s important.  So let’s begin our specification guide.

When to Specify an Industrial Ultrasonic Cleaner

To start with industrial ultrasonic cleaners are employed for tough and often long-term cleaning cycles.  These units may be required to continuously operate for hours and must be designed to meet these rigorous operating conditions.

Here’s a start on points to consider:

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