What are Servo Valves and How do They Work?

Posted on December 12, 2019 James Williams What are Servo Valves and How do They Work?

Within piping and hydraulic systems, valves are an important component that allows for the controlling of liquid flow. Utilizing a valve, the flow of liquid can be started, stopped, redirected, sped or slowed down, or be regulated in regards to its flow. The more complex the system of piping is, the harder it can be to manually manage it in its entirety. Some systems may even prove to be dangerous to handle manually due to extreme temperatures or that the pipe houses chemicals. Complex system may also require very precise changes in which accurate control is of utmost importance. For these systems, servo valves are a great solution that allows for easy and efficient piping management.

Servo valves can be controlled through the use of low powered electrical signals that are sent out remotely from a control panel and transformed into a hydraulic output. Through this, change of pressure, rerouting, and starting and stopping flow can all be done efficiently and digitally. When the electric signal is sent out, it increases in strength through the use of amplifiers until the servo valve actuates the change that is desired. As systems with servo valves are closed loop systems, accurate responses of command can be achieved through feedback being directed to the servo valve.
Servo valves best benefit systems in which there is a need or desire for very high accuracy and control. Within the aerospace industry, servo valves benefit multiple aircraft systems. For the engines, servos work to regulate the amount of fuel that flows from the tank and into the engine for combustion. Fly by wire aircraft such as the Boeing 787 and certain Airbus models also utilize servo valves in order to control their control surfaces.

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