GEA Tuchenhagen VESTA® Sterile Valves
With its VESTA® sterile valve series, GEA Tuchenhagen offers the first practical, cost-effective alternative to diaphragm valves. The full benefits of VESTA® sterile valves, both technical and economic, have yet to be fully realised as new applications become apparent. VESTA® sterile valves fully meet the operational requirements for processes at the highest level, comply with the strictest safety regulations and provide a high quality product. High demands are placed on process components for the pharmaceutical, biotech, cosmetics and food industries if the highest process reliability and product quality are to be achieved. Directives/regulations such as FDA, cGMP and EHEDG; and terms like qualification and validation are gaining more and more importance.
Innovative, valve concept
The VESTA® sterile valve from GEA Tuchenhagen now provides the market with a valve series which is suitable for applications from laboratory up to highly complex process plants. VESTA® sterile valves prevent product contamination from the outside, ensure that the process system stays free of germs. VESTA® sterile valve have the following design benefits:
- Pocket-free design, without domes and sumps
- PTFE bellows as shut-off element for universal applications
- High service life of the PTFE bellows
- A patented bellows sealing system hermetically, safely and permanently seals off the valve against the atmosphere
- Reliable CIP/SIP cleaning thanks to optimised flow characteristics
- Hygienic outer design, meets EHEDG/cGMP standards
- Easy and safe maintenance
Size – the deciding
The VESTA® sterile valve series now makes these different sizes available for the different pipe standards.
The PTFE bellows – the heart of the valve
The heart of the VESTA® sterile valve is the PTFE bellows made of TFM 1705. Apart from its outstanding chemical resistance to almost all types of media TFM 1705 is approved in accordance with the Code of Federal Regulations Title 21 § 177.1550 “Perfluorcarbon resins“ of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The high-quality surface (Ra ≤ 0.8 µm / Rz ≤ 32 µin); the gap-free hermetic seal; and the special design for optimum CIP/SIP cleaning are the characteristic features. The patented GEA Tuchenhagen bellows sealing system ensures that the valve interior is permanently and hermetically sealed off against the atmosphere even during critical phases of the process.
The valve body – a variable basis
The valve bodies of the VESTA® series are made of solid material and are available in 1.4435 (AISI 316L). Valve bodies are generally supplied with a material certificate according to EN 10204/3.1 and have markings in accordance with AD data sheet A4. All valve bodies are fitted with pipe sockets that are suitable for orbital welding using orbital cartridge systems. In addition to body types L+B (2 sockets) and T (3 sockets) other body variants are available for special applications.
Actuators made of synthetic material and stainless steel – a real novelty
GEA Tuchenhagen offers novel single-acting pneumatic actuators made of synthetic material for automated processes. The actuator system is made of the high-performance material PPS. This material has a good chemical resistance is temperature resistant up to 180 °C has good mechanical properties and is highly resistant to ageing. The actuator system is easy to maintain. Thanks to the special design, there is no risk of spring tension being relieved during dismantling. The actuator action is reversible, conversion from spring-to-close to spring-to-open or vice versa is possible and can be done easily on site.
Pneumatic actuators of the VESTA® series are already provided with integrated air connections for plastic hoses, dia. 6×1 mm / 1/4”. Visual detection of the valve position is possible. A relief hole separates actuator and product cavity, thus preventing contamination, and serves as a leakage outlet in the event of actuator defects or breakage of the bellows. VESTA® sterile valves from GEA Tuchenhagen are also available with a pneumatic actuator made of stainless steel, with the same design features as the PPS actuators. Stainless steel actuator versions that are suitable for autoclave sterilization are available on request.
Manual actuators – easy and genious
VESTA® sterile valves with manual actuator are available for manual processes. The special feature here is the design of the manual actuator. An integrated spring package ensures defined compression of the PTFE bellows seal in the closed position and prevents unintended deformation of the bellows.
The spring force only becomes effective shortly before the closed position is reached; in intermediate positions, manual valves can be operated with the lowest effort. Any alteration of the bellows’ seat contour due to influences by the process will not cause leaks – the spring automatically adjusts. VESTA® sterile valves with manual actuator can be provided with a lead seal.
Optional equipment – full of variants
The T.VIS® V-1 / V-20 is an electrical position indicator with feedback signals and optionally integrated solenoid valves. Automated end position programming can be activated alternatively using the buttons or the programming input (integrated as a standard) in just a few seconds.
The T.VIS® P-1 / P-20 is a compact position controller for pneumatic valves. By specifying a setpoint (4-20 mA), transferred e.g. by the PLC, the process valve can be
brought to any position. The position is detected by a position sensor with a resolution of 0.01 mm and adjusted by 2 integrated solenoid valves.
Service and maintenance – the great strength
A major feature is the easy on-site service and maintenance. For routine inspections or replacing the PTFE bellows simply release the groove nut, remove the complete valve insert from the body – and that’s it. VESTA® sterile valves do not have any loose fixing elements the groove nut is connected with the valve insert. All service work can be performed with standard tools no matter whether you are replacing the bellows or servicing the actuator systems.
Hygienic design – also from the outside
Special attention was made by GEA Tuchenhagen to hygienic outer design when developing the VESTA® sterile valves. The design of the closed lantern with self-draining surfaces (without cavities or gaps) irrespective of the valve installation position ensures a lasting hygienic valve exterior.
Surface quality – a important factor
In sterile processes, the high quality of the surfaces is the basic requirement for a safe and reliable process. In product contact areas, VESTA® sterile valves generally have an inner surface roughness of Ra ≤ 0.8 mm (optionally electropolished). Higher-grade surfaces are available on request. VESTA® sterile valves are also suitable for use in cleanrooms.
Reproducebility of manufacturing quality – another quality characteristic
VESTA® sterile valves are produced in accordance with the highest quality standards. This is ensured by GEA Tuchenhagen’s quality assurance system, which is certified according to DIN ISO 9001. Permanent quality tests in the workshop marking of all components valve identification by means of type plate are among the features that ensure a constantly high quality level and enables reliable tracing.
VESTA® sterile valves can be supplied by GEA Tuchenhagen with certificates for the following quality characteristics:
- Body with material certificate acc. to EN 10 204 (on request 3.1)
- Surface roughness documented by factory test certificate acc. to EN 10 204 (on request 3.1)
- Delta ferrite content documented by works certificate acc. to EN 10 204, optional (on request)
- Bellows material certificated according to EN 10 204; conform to FDA 21 § 177.1550 (on request EN 10 204/3.1)
- Certificate for PTFE bellows (TFM 1705) as verification of biocompatibility according to USP Class VI (on request)