Cleanliness in automotive powertrain manufacture is critical for several reasons:
• Particulates generated in the various casting and machining processes must be effectively removed to prevent both the premature wear of sliding and rotating parts as well as the catastrophic failure of components such as transmission valve bodies.
One of the final steps in component manufacturing is the cleaning process, and current commercial washer systems can be quite effective at removal of particulate contaminants. In fact, washer system performance is traditionally evaluated based on particulate removal efficiency.
Efficiency is typically quantified using tests such as the “Millipore Test.” In this test, a cleaned part is thoroughly rinsed with solvent under pressure, the solvent is collected and then filtered to recover any particulates that may have remained on the cleaned part. The mass of the recovered particulates is measured, as this value is used as a parameter to evaluate washer system performance.