How Do You Maximize Cleaning Performance with Ultrasonic Equipment?
Several adjustments can be made to increase the cleaning performance of your ultrasonic process: 1) Frequency – This is the number of waves in a second, so how “tight” the wave form is. Lower frequencies provide more aggressive cleaning, but more potential of damaging sensitive surfaces and components. High frequency sonic waves can penetrate into tighter areas. As you get over 400 kHz, in the mega-sonic range, the bubble collapse is not as violent due to smaller spacing, so cleaning is often less effective in tight areas. 2) Amplitude – This is the height of the wave, or the loudness. Greater amplitude will generally increase cleaning effectiveness, but also the potential for damage of delicate surfaces or components. 3) Temperature – Increased temperature generally improves the cleaning performance of a solvent. Higher temperature can also reduce the viscosity of the cleaner and increase the surface tension, allowing the solvent to enter tighter areas. Cleaning performance increases significantly if the temperature of the solvent is above the melting point of the soil. 4) Time – Increase the time of the cleaning cycle to compensate for lower than optimal solvency. 5) Chemistry – If the chemistry has a good solvency match to the soil, less sonic agitation will be needed. This allows you to run your cleaning process more quickly, at lower temperature, and lower amplitude, decreasing the likelihood of damaging sensitive components.