Suction Cups: A Finite Definition

Suction Cups: A Finite Definition 

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What are Suction Cups? 

In a sense, suction cups are the connector between a workpiece and the handling system, which consist of a elastomer part (the suction cup) and a linking element. 

In most instances, suction cups are used to grip and move workpieces across assembly lines with the assistance of automated robotic arms. These handling systems utilize suction cups in automated or manual handling applications. Within these applications, suction cups can secure and assist in transporting a wide range of products and or parts for a final product. 

Whilst in automated or manual applications, suction cups work with the help of vacuums. During the process when the suction cups attaches to any workpiece, ambient air pressure (atmospheric pressure) is built up. Then when the ambient pressure is greater than the pressure between the cup and the work piece, the pressure difference allows for the suction cup to press against the work piece.  

suction cups, vacuum suction cups, bellows suction cups, multi-bellows suction cups, flat suction cups, suckersThe pressure difference is created via a vacuum generator that excavates the air between the space in-between the cup and workpiece. While under pressure, the suction cup blocks air from entering in and because of that a vacuum is generated. Though for vacuums to be successfully made, the workpiece's surface should be smooth and nonporous. That is because smooth, nonporous surfaces allow for the cup rim to completely seal against the ambient air, which helps the interior air to be quickly extracted and, as a result, a firm grip can be made on the workpiece. However in the case of irregular surfaces, suction cups can still function correctly, though specific conditions must be met. On rough or uneven surfaces, seals cannot be completely made since outside air constantly enters the system, resulting in what is called a leaking system. Therefore, designers must compensate for these irregular surfaces. One of the most common ways to compensate for leaking systems is by using high-flow vacuum generators that helps reduce leakage or smaller cups that lowers the risk for leaks. 

Looking beyond the connecting process, there are other specifications that allow for suction cups to have several benefits. These vacuum cups holds specific advantages in automated and manual applications. Specifically, suction cups are relatively simple in design, they are compact, lightweight, inexpensive, and most importantly, they require minimal maintenance to upkeep. Another benefit is that suction cups are capable of firmly attaching to parts in high-speed motion conditions. In addition, these cups are relatively gentle with fragile parts, and this ensures a lower risk of parts being damaged while being transported or assembled. 

Suction Cup Formula 

The holding force of the suction cups increases along side the difference between the ambient pressure and the pressure inside the cup. The formula below demonstrates how the holding force is calculated. 

F  = Δp x A 

  • F  = Holding force
  • Δp  = Difference between ambient pressure and pressure of the system
  • A  = Effective suction area (the effective area of a suction cup under vacuum) 

Our Inventory

  • Wide range of sizes for different types of suction cups 
  • Including Flat suction cups, Bellows suction cups, and Multi-bellows suction cups
  • Quick and responsive service 
  • Immediate and efficient delivery 

In our inventory we offer several variations of suction cups in various sizes and series. Here at Rubber Shop we have a wide range of suction cups and we can make custom suction cups for specific specifications. 

These are the categories of suction cups we offer:

Bellows Suction Cups, Vacuum suction Cups, suction cups, suckers

Bellows Suction Cups

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Flat Suction Cups

multi-bellows suction cups, vacuum suction cups, suction cups, suckers
Multi-Bellows Suction cups
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Custom Suction Cups



Quick Delivery and Easy to Order

When you have identified the suction cups that are best suited for your purposes, head to the product and select request a quote, than after you selected all the items you would like to inquire, click on the request the quote button on the menu. At the request the quote page you will find your items and can submit your inquiries. 

Another option you may choose is to contact us directly through email, than click here. Just fill out the contact form and we will get back to you within 24 hours. 

Once you have submitted a quote or a contact form, we will answer any inquires or process any quotes you have submitted, which will take a day or two. From there, we will start shipping your items directly to you. Depending on where you are the shipping time may differ and the shipping fees may differ as well depending on your location. 

For more information on shipping and tracking, click here to view our shipping policies and information on how we will deliver your packages. 

Further Questions? 

If you have any questions or request you would like to get more information on, please feel free to contact us through our contact form here.  

You may also contact us through the contact form below.