The Xeros Machine
At first glance a Xeros washing machine appears no different to a conventional machine. Access via the unmodified door, the full colour controller display, and the general appearance are all reassuringly familiar. The proprietary technology that allows the machine to handle Xeros polymer beads as part of its wash process is hidden from view. The capability for bead storage, transport, and crucially, addition and removal from the wash load, is all built in.
Beads are stored in a wet sump mounted low in the machine, which is decoupled from the wash drum housing to aid machine balancing during high speed extract. The internal structure of the sump is specially designed to allow easy removal and transport of the beads up into the drum. Storage of the beads in this way also enables their cleaning during long term use of the machine, and easy hygiene control.
Also mounted low in the machine is the bead pump which during the wash cycle moves the beads to the top of the machine in a small amount of transport water. This bead/water mixture then enters a proprietary separator device, which passes the beads into the wash drum, whilst returning the transport water directly back down to the sump where it is used to move the next bead pulse. Crucially, the addition of beads to the drum is via another proprietary system, which allows the machine door access to remain unhindered during use.
The Xeros polymer beads are then intimately mixed with the wash load in the drum, and the combination of their gentle and uniform mechanical action plus their tailored chemistry helps generate outstanding stain removal, with excellent fabric care.
During the wash phase, the beads continuously fall through holes in the drum wall, and return to the sump, where they are again pumped back up to the separator device to continue the washing process. Hence, the beads are flowed through the wash load during washing, allowing stain removal and transport away – so generating excellent greying control. The rate of bead flow through the drum is one of the key parameters to the Xeros process, and various process control features ensure this is tailored to give optimum performance.
Xeros uses a spray rinsing system to further deliver on its promise of low water consumption. This too is a proprietary piece of technology, and it delivers excellent rinsing performance versus conventional processes. During rinsing the bead pump is switched off, and the combination of low and high speed extracts enables the last few beads remaining in the wash load to fall through the drum, and return to the sump. The wash load is then ready to be removed, and the machine is ready for its next cycle.