For solenoid valves used in miniature hydraulic applications, such as those found in the medical, chemical and scientific sectors, there’s always a need to meet a number of important prerequisites. From our extensive experience across a multitude of industries, we know that reliability is primary among them. Particularly vital is tolerance to contamination within the flow stream, as this attribute makes a major contribution to the maintenance-free, trouble-free operations that keep end users content.
With these thoughts in mind, our team of expert engineers here at The Lee Company set about developing the LFY2 series of 3-way pinch solenoid valves. Using an innovative Y-shaped elastomeric tube and proprietary actuating mechanism, our LFY2 valve features a controlled pinch action that seals off the normally open or closed ports as the solenoid actuates. This precise pinch preserves the purity of the fluid and is tolerant of contamination in the flow stream, providing consistent, reliable performance throughout its rated life. Indeed, the LFY2 offers an operating life of 5 million cycles, as supported by 100% functional testing for performance and the use of robust, carefully selected engineering materials.
Why use a Y-shaped elastomeric tube, we hear you ask? Well, this shape allows for single-plane flow through the valve, keeping fluid flow laminar, while the 3-way design facilitates efficient flow selection between samples, calibrants or cleaning solutions, for example. In essence, what we’ve created combines the best features of inert isolation valves with the flow path of a pinch valve, while eliminating the need for maintenance.
Further benefits of our ground-breaking internal pinch-tube valve include low shear which, for instance, increases the viability of cellular samples and improves cell-count accuracy. In addition, this energy-efficient, chemically-inert valve offers zero dead volume and a fully swept flow path to minimise sample volume and residual carryover during operation, thus protecting fragile samples.
We particularly want to let you know that the LFY2 features an ultra-low internal volume of less than 10 μL, providing advantages such as the potential to process microlitre sample volumes and make cost savings on reagents. This feature makes the valve ideal in systems for flow cytometry (single-cell biology), gene sequencing, drug discovery and in-vitro diagnostics, for example, as well as scientific instrument applications.
Although LFY2 excels wherever low crossover, low shear and low internal volume switching is required, we’re always happy to further optimise the performance characteristics in line with your specific application requirements.
To discover more about our LFY2 3-way pinch solenoid valve and how it can benefit your project, please get in touch.