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Design Of A Pneumatic Valve For Automatic Seat Lifting Or Door Opening Mechanisms

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2010 Annual Conference & Exposition


Louisville, Kentucky

Publication Date

June 20, 2010

Start Date

June 20, 2010

End Date

June 23, 2010



Conference Session

Curriculum in Mechanical Engineering Technology: Part I

Tagged Division

Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

15.359.1 - 15.359.11



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Paper Authors

author page

Cheng Lin Old Dominion University

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Design of a Pneumatic Valve for an Automatic Seat Lifting or Door Opening Mechanism


Design and fabrication using a designed 5/2 (five ports and two positions) pneumatic valve to automatically lift a cover is presented. Operation of the design utilizes only through mechanical means without using electrical power, electronic sensors, and controllers. Therefore, the system not only saves energy, but also increases operational safety. For light-duty operation, the air can even be supplied by a bellow foot-air pump through a foot pedal, which can also be acted as the single actuating button. When an operator hits the foot pedal, the cover will be opened and remain in the opening position until the food pedal is hit the second time. The operation can be repeated.


The course of Automation and Controls offered in the Mechanical Engineering Technology Program of the Department of Engineering Technology at Old Dominion University has the objective of teaching students: (1) Pneumatic components and pneumatic circuit designs. (2) Feedbacks from electrical sensors and related ladder diagrams. (3) Introduction to Programmable Logical Controllers (PLC) and PLC1,2 programs. (4) Integration of pneumatic, electrical, and/or hydraulic components with PLC programs. To let students have hands-on applications in this course, a two-hour/week lab is also offered to train the students to integrate mechanical, pneumatic, and electrical components with ladder diagrams or PLC programs. The lab basically includes three main sessions: (1) four weeks of pneumatic applications, (2) four weeks of pneumatic components, electrical sensors, and ladder diagrams, and (3) five weeks of PLC programming using IDEC3 and TRiLOGI4 PLCs. In addition, the simulation software of Automation Studio5 is used in each project so that students can check their designs before implementing their projects.

This design of this research project is to apply the knowledge learned from this course to provide a simple and safe mechanism for a person to lift a toilet cover in the rest room. The design can also be served as a door-opening device. For safety reason, a pneumatic system without using electrical power is required. The compressive air can be supplied by either a compressor or a bellow foot-pedal pump. Operation of the system is very simple. The person only needs to hit a foot pedal if the air is through the use of a foot pump. When the button or foot pedal is hit the second time, the cover will be dropped to the closed position. The operation can be repeated. The author provided the design idea for the valve and asked two MET seniors to work on their Senior Capstone Project for the implementation.

Lin, C. (2010, June), Design Of A Pneumatic Valve For Automatic Seat Lifting Or Door Opening Mechanisms Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. 10.18260/1-2--16087

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