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Ultra-pure, germ-free processes are crucial to the increasingly sophisticated production methods used in industries such as pharmaceuticals, medical technology, food processing and the electronics sector. One solution to preventing contamination during production is to prevent the apparatus and workroom from coming into contact. This may seem an almost impossible challenge at first, but the special characteristics of superconductor technology are set to make it a reality. Among its other highlights at HANNOVER MESSE 2018, FESTO is presenting a superconductor-based concept for contactless weighing and measuring.

Superconductors are materials that acquire very special properties when cooled below a certain temperature - they can "freeze" the field of a permanent magnet at a defined distance. As a result, objects can be held in position and moved free of contact, with the levitation gap remaining constant even when obstacles are found in its path. Thanks to their restoring forces, superconductive magnetic bearing components autonomously return to their stored positions, even if one of them is temporarily removed - and do so without any need for external control technology. FESTO has been working hard to harness the characteristics of superconductors and is now exhibiting the SupraSensor system, a contactless balance ideal for use on sterile workbenches in biological or chemical analytics. What’s more, the concept also allows many other physical properties to be measured via the force-based system, including density, viscosity and temperature.