Air Clutches 101: What Are They And How Do They Work?

Many industrial clutches used in heavy machinery work in similar ways. Each clutch works to synchronize two rotating shafts. They do this by locking them together to spin at the same time or by decoupling the shafts to get them to spin at different speeds to stop the car.

But different clutches exist for different purposes. That said, what exactly is an air clutch and what does it do?

Air Clutches: What They Do And Why They Do It

Industrial air clutches are used in heavy machinery to transfer power (or torque) in relation to the engine. Your average engine has an output shaft. You can see this shaft on a car engine at the flywheel position.

A clutch is a system of either plates or grabbing disks that are used to engage the power from the flywheel. From there, it transfers the power to the transmission of the vehicle.

Power takeoff shafts (PTO) are capable of performing the same function and are often used in farm machinery or other heavy construction equipment. The engine clutch will engage with the PTO shaft. This causes it to spin.

Instead of hydraulic oil, air clutches use compressed air to regulate the contact between two power shafts. A signal is sent by a sensor when the shifter mechanism is activated. When the shifter engages the clutch, the magnetic valve assembly is activated.

The compressed air is moved through the valve to the air clutch, which uses it to couple two shafts. The more air used in the process can sometimes cause an up-shift. In contrast, a reduction in air can cause a downshift.

The compressed air used by the air break comes from an onboard compressor tank. In some systems, it comes from a routing from the engine’s exhaust system.

Where can I find an air clutch brake near me?

It’s no secret the industrial clutch and brake market is growing fast. In fact, Asia-Pacific ranks as the fastest growing industrial brake market with a CAGR of 8.4%.

Whether you’re looking for an industrial clutch and break, air clutch brake, a disc brake caliper, or engine driven products, WPT Power has what you need. To learn more about our air clutch brakes and high torque clutches, contact WPT Power today.

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