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High production speed and accuracy

25 January 2013

EFD has developed the PicoDot jet dispensing system—a new, non-contact dispensing system that uses piezoelectric technology to apply small, precise amounts of a wide variety of fluids.

With the ability to apply consistent shots as small as 2 nanoliters at speeds up to 150 dots per second, the PicoDot system is suitable for high-speed, high volume applications that require many small, precise fluid deposits. The narrow design of the valves, with a width of approximately ½ inch, makes them particularly well suited for installations where space is tight or valves need to be mounted close to each other.

Because the valve nozzle does not contact the substrate, the Pico Dot system is also a good choice for applications where controlled amounts of fluid must be applied on surfaces that are not perfectly flat, such as printed circuit boards. Eliminating contact with the substrate also eliminates the need for vertical Z-axis movement and precise height positioning, which can significantly increase production speeds.

The range of possible applications is huge. Sample uses include electronics (bonding cell phone speakers with UV-cure adhesives), life sciences (attaching needles to medical syringes), and precision mechanical applications (jetting small amounts of grease on micro gears).

PicoDot valves are available in several different configurations to handle fluids ranging from 50 to 500,000 cps. The LV configuration is designed for use with low viscosity fluids from 50 - 1,000 cps; the MV configuration covers a wide range of viscosities from 50 - 200,000 cps; and the HV configuration is specifically designed for fluids with high viscosities of 1,000 - 500,000 cps. Nozzles are available with 150µm, 200µm, 300µm and 400µm orifice diameters to accommodate a wide range of dot sizes.

Most PicoDot valves, except those used exclusively for low-viscosity fluids, incorporate a heater near the fluid channel in order to thin the fluid to its optimum jetting viscosity. Depending on the rate of consumption, fluid can be supplied to PicoDot valves from syringe barrels, tanks or drum unloader systems.