Designed for district heating and cooling applications, Vexve’s new Hydrox product family of hydraulic control solutions is meant for the most challenging of installation conditions, where reliability, ease of use, and safety are crucial.
A combination of a hydraulic actuator and a control unit, Hydrox has been specifically designed to operate seamlessly with Vexve’s range of ball and butterfly valves, providing easy and reliable operation with maximum safety.
According to Anne Savolainen, Export Director in charge of Vexve’s business in Asia, Hydrox has been developed as a response to the increasing demand for such advanced solutions expressed by customers practically the world over.
“The demand has definitely been growing over the past few years,” Savolainen confirms. “An increasing number of smart cities utilizing cleantech know-how are emerging, more than half of them in Asia.”
More and more installation sites, we learn, are located underground in challenging conditions. Lack of space frequently means that there is no easy access for maintenance. Hydrox enables the operation of such underground networks without the need to interfere with people’s daily lives.
Hydrox is an ideal solution for large cities with busy traffic or otherwise challenging installation sites and conditions. (Image courtesy of Vexve)
China, the Land of Opportunities
Imagine a bustling city such as Beijing, which has a population of over 20 million and more traffic than its streets can usually handle.
Traditionally, Beijing has been heated during the cold winters by means of coal-powered plants scattered across the city. In the last couple of years, Beijing has made significant efforts to renew its power plants by changing their energy source from coal to natural gas. This has improved the air quality, but the pollution caused by industry as well as the city’s heavy traffic is still severe.
The development of the city’s district heating network is one of the several keys to diminishing the detrimental effects of pollution on the environment, the health of citizens, and even the country’s economy. However, providing a large city such as Beijing with district heating does not come without its challenges.
For instance, the space available in a large city is not always as ample as desired. Imagine, then, a situation where the maintenance of underground pipelines involving the closing of a large valve is required. In order to perform maintenance, you would in many cases need to either risk your workers’ safety, or shut down the traffic of an entire block, something that in a city like Beijing would certainly turn into a major headache.
“Hydrox enables you to control what’s going on underground via a mobile device or a computer, making maintenance easy and safe,” says Savolainen. “In addition, the fact that the valve control solution is hydraulic means that no electricity is needed. When we think about safety, this is crucial – after all, maintenance does frequently take place in circumstances involving moisture and even water.”
Vexve has been delivering its products to Chinese district heating projects for over 20 years already, and China is traditionally one of the company’s biggest growth markets. In the light of the most recent developments, this is unlikely to change.
Savolainen brings up China’s latest five-year plan, which includes a growing focus on cleantech and other sustainable technologies.
“China wants to change the way its economy is growing,” she points out. “This includes creating a better natural environment for the citizens. China aims to achieve this by investing in the development of green and low-carbon technologies.”
And to achieve that, China needs the help of others. Cleantech cooperation between China and a leading cleantech country such as Finland will benefit all parties involved: it will give China the environmental benefits it needs, while businesses with the knowhow and technologies will have ample opportunities for growth and further development.
As part of the technology partnership between China and Finland, Vexve is now about to launch Hydrox for the Chinese market. Needless to say, the expectations are high.
“Hydrox is an ideal product for China’s district heating infrastructure,” Savolainen states. “It represents new technology that can help the country develop its centralized heating networks. By providing its cleantech expertise, Vexve is determined to become part of the solution that will bring blue skies and clean air back to the Chinese people.”
Text and main image by Industrial PRIME
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