Compressed Air – Initial and Main Treatment
The compressed air needs to be cooled down in an aftercooler to achieve condensation and subsequent removal of water and oil vapours. Distribution of cooled compressed air is also more cost effective than hot compressed air, as less energy is required to distribute cool air. Oil vapours can only be removed economically below 40 °C.
After the aftercooler, the air is fed through a condensate separator trap to collect and drain the condensate from the system.
Most old systems uses air receivers (a pressure vessel that stores fluids under pressure) for the purpose of smoothing out pulsations caused by reciprocating compressors, and to collect and remove condensate. An air receiver, if used, also supplements the compressor output for short periods of high demand of compressed air.
For start-stop controlled compressors, an air receiver is sized to control the frequency of start-stops of the compressor.
New World Leading Compressed Air Distribution Technologies
New technology developed by Air Systems builds required storage volume into distribution system. Occupational Health and Safety Act requires “pressure vessels” to be tested every three years, test cost is avoided if whole system is a “pressurised system”. With the new Pressure Equipment Regulations (Effective 1 October 2009) an airline need to be categorised and only designed and installed as per the PERs.
Air receivers are only used at points where an application’s demand exceeds compressor supply for short periods of time.
Air receivers are sized to supplement available compressed air supply so as not to cause a severe pressure drop in the system which would affect other applications, and to avoid having to install larger compressors to merely cater for these short periods of high demand. Air receiver is charged up while high demand application not in use.
The new development in compressed air distribution technology (developed by Air Systems) is to produce the various required air qualities at their point of application rather than producing a single air quality for the whole system.
- This new technology also negates the need to run dual systems for purposes of different air qualities and pressures
- It uses the maximum pressure in the system for purposes of distribution, which reduces friction losses caused by low pressure/high velocity conditions, – energy already paid for, but lost
- It uses pressure regulators at the point of use to achieve the required pressure for the application, which is more economical than upstream pressure reduction by not wasting energy already paid for
- Filtration costs are also lower at higher pressure because smaller filters and air treatment devices are required for higher pressures
Various dryers are available, refrigerated, desiccant (dual bank chemical adsorption), chemical (single bank absorption), or new technology membrane air dryers for single point applications, etc. Pressure dew points typically vary between -75°C to + 10°C
In most cases main air treatment is now done using filters and often air dryers. Filters are used to filter out particles (sintered element filters), oil vapours (coalescing filters), odours (activated carbon filters) and bacteria (sterile filters that make use of steam to purge filters).
Our approach to using filters are different from mainstream companies achieving excellent, cost effective results.
Main air treatment at the compressor/s consist of the minimum i.e. aftercooler (often built into compressor package) and our patented Tornado SideCharge water separator trap or patented Cyclon air receiver.