AVA finishes strong despite global pandemic

AV Actuators are set to finish strong in what has been a very challenging year for the UK brand of electric actuators. The team have spent the year completing the development of their range actuators to complete the offering of 20Nm to 400Nm with a new design 200 and 400 series launching in Q4 2020. In addition to working on the products, the team has been expanded whilst new partners have been established and contracts have been signed that will see 1000s of actuators supplied each year.

Looking at the new 200-400 series, this is the very latest offering from AVA, with it comes new technology that will be rolled out across the entire range, this includes sensor technology that is able to monitor the motor condition, high and low temperature and humidity. This is the first step in the development of the actuators to allow for improved remote diagnostics and support for its global customer base. Bluetooth connectivity will come next along with other design features. The 200-400 actuator has a new OLED screen display offering the user more information on screen than ever before, the actuator has self-diagnostic test capabilities, a declutchable manual override selector, LED status light for open, close and alert conditions. The new actuator also brings failsafe capabilities with the range previously limited to 110Nm torque output. AVA use super capacitors to achieve failsafe functionality, a feature that has been well received by its customers. The new series will cover On-Off, Failsafe, Modulating, Modulating Failsafe and Modbus functionality.

In terms of new products, AVA have also refined their Multi Turn offering for non-rising stem valves. Using onboard firmware, the user can set the desired number of turns at a touch of a button allowing one actuator to cover various sizes. With its high-speed capabilities, the Multi Turn series offers On-Off and Modulating function, with the 20Nm actuator achieving a full rotation of 360 degrees in 4 seconds. Next year the team are working to produce a new 1000-2000Nm series.

Staying on products, AVA are to start the process of obtaining UL and CSA dual certification for its actuators as the US and Canadian markets increase with large contracts secured, interest over there is at an all time high. The dual certification will come from UL with testing done in Germany in Q1 2021. New distribution and OEM partners await the approval having life cycle tested the products this year. One of AVA’s new customers have successfully tested the actuators through 600,000 operations.

AVA continues to invest in its staff and infrastructure, an update to the website and continued improvements to the UK HQ will be made in Q1 2021. This includes a new advanced test and R+D facility. Once international travel resumes, AVA have plans to add to their team with appointments and expansion of personnel in Asia and mainland Europe. 

Finally, as reported in various Valve User editions, AVA has now signed contracts with a customer in the USA that will see 1000s of actuators sold each year. This agreement has taken over 3 years from initial contact to reach the stage it now is at with sample orders to the client’s specification approved and initial stock order of more than 3000 actuators is now to be placed before the end of 2020. In addition to this, AVA have now expanded its distribution network with new partners in Finland, Norway, Germany and Australia to name a few with private label customers in Netherlands and USA taking the product on.

COVID-19 has impacted the company in terms of import and export, limitations on travel, the cancellation of many shows including Valve World in Dusseldorf and plans to expand into Europe and Asia. However, the team have used the time well and have achieved a lot of what was hoped back in January. Exciting times ahead for this compact, feature rich electric actuator company.

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