If you’re a fan of Sherlock Holmes 19th Century novels or sci-fi movies in the 1990s, you probably know the pneumatic tube system (PTS). The pneumatic tube is a system that propels cylindrical containers through a network of PVC or aluminium pipes by compressed air, or partially by vacuum. Pneumatic tubes gained popularity in the late 19th and throughout the 20th Centuries. The pressure control valve used in the PTS was already advanced for its time.
Pneumatic tubes are still essential
Surprisingly, more than 100 years after the PTS was invented, it remains one of the most efficient automated solutions to transport small, urgent packages like money, paperwork, and mail. Despite the technological wonders of the internet, smartphones, and apps, the pneumatic tube system is still essential for the healthcare, hospitality, and retail sectors.
- In the healthcare sector, the PTS is essential in the hospital lab to quickly transport tissue samples, blood, and pharmaceutical products.
- In the hospitality sector, the PTS is used to deliver casino chips, receipts, coins, and money.
- In retail businesses, it is essential to send supermarket cash and receipts.
- In other industries, documents and product samples can be sent fast between floors and departments.
Advantages and disadvantages
By the 20th Century, pneumatic tube systems were common in retail businesses. Cashiers in checkout counters only needed to send money and receipts through the PTS, saving time since they no longer had to stand up and deliver everything by hand. This was the same concept applied in large mall department stores, casinos, and even banks.
Because they are pneumatic, the PTS can move things up, down, or sideways. Since they save a lot of time by removing the need for a person to deliver things by hand, they also offer a secure connection between different departments or parts of a building. This reduces opportunities for theft and accidental damage in transit.
Of course, the biggest disadvantage is that the tubes that link stations need to be planned into the building’s infrastructure while it is being designed. This is possible with something like a new hospital. However, as everyone is familiar with, as technology is taking us into a paperless age, and information is delivered in just nanoseconds, the use of pneumatic tubes is now becoming more and more limited.
Since 1989, originally made pressure control valve systems and other valves have been distributed by MasterMac2000, one of Australia’s largest privately-owned pneumatic component distributors. Quality brands of valves being distributed include Mack, Univer, Tolomatic, Piab, and much more. For your valve and cylinder system needs, call MasterMac2000 now at 0733444711, or you can enquire at https://mastermac2000.com.au/.