Product Focus: The Burkert 8681 and APV CU Control Tops for Sanitary Valves

June 17, 2014

Today’s product focus post is going to take a look at two of SPX’s newest sanitary valve automation products- the Burkert 8681 and APV CU control tops. Long known for their standard, clear acrylic 2 piece WCB top, SPX has recently introduced these two new innovative products to capture the high and low ends of the sanitary valve automation control market. Which control top is right for you? Let’s take a look.

First and foremost, what is a valve control top and what does it do? A valve control top is a set of electronics that is usually mounted directly onto the valve actuator. A valve control top will usually have two different components- the first component is a switch to monitor and relay valve position- known as a limit or proximity switch (depending on your preferred technology). The second component is a solenoid, or an electrically controlled device that can be used to control air flow into a pneumatic actuator and hence control valve position. Other valve components can include relay devices such as ASi cards or electropneuamtic positioners, as well as LED or dome indicators. But the two main components of a control top are your solenoids and your position indicators.

The Burkert 8681 Control Top

The Burkert 8681 Control Top Mounted to a SPX Sanitary W60 Seat Valve

At the high end of the valve control top market, SPX has partnered with Burkert to bring the 8681 control top to the SPX and APV sanitary valve lines. The 8681 top features inductive, contact free positioners with up to 3 programmable positions and 1 optional external proximity sensor mounted in the yoke area for failsafe monitoring. This feature allows us to “teach” the top up to three valve positions and then “set and forget”. This control top also features an ultra-bright, colored status indicator with 360 degree view. This make it easy for operators and engineers to discern valve position and status. Available with multiple optional solenoids and even Bluetooth (yes, you can control a valve from a cell phone), the 8681 top is rated IP69K for extremely wet and high humidity wash down environments. The 8681 top is available for class 1 Div 2 service and is available on the WCB 60/80/90 series of sanitary seat valves, the WCB W70 series of sanitary mixproof valves, the 200 and 300 series WCB ball and butterfly valves, as well as the APV SV series butterfly valves and SW4 aseptic valve.

At the other end of the valve automation market, SPX is now proud to offer the APV Delta CU4 direct connect control top. Featuring  low upfront costs, the CU4 control top offers robust valve control at an economical price level. Also available on WCB sanitary  seat, ball, butterfly, and mix proof valves, the CU4 control top is available in both 110 VAC and 24VDC versions. Available with standard Hall proximity sensors and solenoids, the CU4 is well suited for safe, reliable service in the harshest of environments. The CU4 also features 5 ultra-bright LED’s for clear viewing of valve status from a distance, indicating position (open or closed), power, and optional seat lift. At about 1/3 less than comparable WCB acrylic tops, and half the price of the 8681, the CU4 is an excellent option where economic valve control is critical.

To conclude, which product is right for you? Well if you’re looking for a robust process monitoring solution that can control and provide feedback and even let you troubleshoot your valve from a centralized control system, go with the 8681 or the standard WCB control top. The 8681 top is especially well suited for sanitary mixproof valves where seat lift operations need to be monitored. If you’re looking for a simple way to control a valve that you can throw away and don’t have to worry about stocking parts, go with the CU4 top. But whether you’re looking to monitor valve position or interface with your PLC- Holland has the product for you. Contact a Holland Sales Engineer today for more information about our exciting valve automation accessories.