Pneumatic Building Automation Basics

SKU: RVI-11464Duration: 20 Minutes

In all actuality, pneumatic systems are simply a division of engineering which uses gas or pressurized air. Pneumatic control systems can be effective and economical. In HVAC systems, this control method relies on sensors and thermostats that retain the line pressure from the sensor to the control device and the actuator. This course will provide a basic understanding of the components that make up a pneumatic system including the conditioning and operating systems. An introduction to pneumatic actuators, electro-pneumatic transducers, and pneumatic thermostats is included. Additionally, you'll learn about certain hazards associated with maintaining a pneumatic system and the proper safety precautions and maintenance techniques that will minimize these hazards.

Course Details


Training Time: 20 minutes

Compatibility: Desktop, Tablet, Phone

Based on: Industry Standards and Best Practices

Languages: English

Learning Objectives

  • State the purpose of a P.E. transducer
  • Compare and contrast Direct Acting and Reverse Acting Thermostat operation
  • Recognize the typical pressure used in pneumatic controls
  • Name the piece of mechanical equipment critical for a pneumatic control system
  • State the purpose of a pneumatic actuator
  • Choose the energy source pneumatic controls use
  • Label common components of a pneumatic control system

Key Questions

The following key questions are answered in this module:

What is pneumatics?
Pneumatics is a branch of engineering that involves the study and application of compressed gases, particularly air.

What is the purpose of a single control loop within a control system?
The purpose of a single control loop within a control system is to maintain a process value at a target or set point value.

What is the most critical part of the air supply system?
The most critical part of the air supply system is the air compressor as it supplies the energy to compress the air that is discharged into a tank.

What is the purpose of an actuator?
The purpose of an actuator is to respond to pressure changes from a controller by moving and positioning external control elements such as valves and dampers.

What is the best installation method for a pneumatic thermostat?
The best installation method is the one which requires the least amount of pneumatic piping, and that is determined by the relative locations of the thermostat, the actuator and the supply air.

Sample Video Transcript

Below is a transcript of the video sample provided for this module:

Contemporary control systems use electricity for measurement, communication and movement of final control elements. Pneumatic systems use the energy contained in compressed air to perform all of those functions. A pneumatic control system requires a reliable supply of high-quality compressed air. The most critical part of the air supply system is the air compressor. It supplies the energy to compress the air that is discharged into a tank. The tank serves multiple purposes. It provides a reserve volume of air, it provides a surge volume that prevents the compressor from having to run constantly, and it provides a place for water removal.
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