Designer's Corner

Cleaner water cleaner

Permanent filters simplify operation of this four-stage oil/water separating
unit. Each filter comprises a stack of hundreds of annular polypropylene discs.
Radial grooves on the surface of each disc taper toward a central perforated

Oily wastewater enters each filter at the bottom. Large oil globules can't enter the discs' small groves. Instead, they rise to the top of the clear filter housing where they can be drawn off. Smaller oil droplets preferentially cling to the polypropylene discs. They gradually coalesce with other trapped droplets, pass through the core and enter a subsequent filter with smaller grooves where the process is repeated. If wastewater is to be recycled, the fourth stage is normally a 50-aem filter. If it is to be discharged into sewers, a replaceable 5-aem final filter "polishes" the effluent.

Jonathan Strauss, Keller Products, Inc., Box 26, Lexington, MA 02173, (800) 352-8422.

Pressure sentinel

Essentially a calibrated can, the Kipster peak-pressure recorder consists of a cylindrical stainless steel body with a thin Inconel disc braised to one end. Exposed to pneumatic or hydraulic pressure, the disc deforms predictably and permanently. From the depth of deformation, users can determine peak pressure to approximately 3% full-scale accuracy.

Admittedly, Kipsters aren't as accurate as other methods but make up for it in toughness and reliability. Each unit is pressure-tested for linearity. Applications include monitoring down-hole oil-drilling equipment, pressure vessels, and aircraft prototypes as well as back-up pressure surveillance for process industries and equipment warrantee coverage.

Robert Kolp, The Lee Co., 2 Pettipaug Rd., P.O. Box 424, Westbrook, CT 06498, (203) 399-6281.

Fender saver

Unlike traditional soft covers, custom-molded hard covers conform closely to automotive fenders so they won't rip or slip. Soft foam inserts bonded to their concave side help protect the car's finish and lock the covers in place. A circular opening near the door frame allows them to be hung on hooks for easy transport back to the start of the assembly line. At one assembly plant, the covers saved GM $3.4 million in finish-rework costs in their first year.

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