A Compressed Air System

A Compressed Air System

Typical Goals For An Air System 
A reliable source of compressed air. In many situations, no air means no production  An economical cost to produce and distribute compressed air to the point of use. Money is always limited.  The ability to monitor and distribute the cost of compressed air to the users. There is no such thing as free air .

Compressed Air System Operating Costs
Cost of energy to operate the driver Depreciation (cost to purchase) Cost of money Space cost Installation cost Routine maintenance cost Repair cost Overhaul cost Supervisory cost

´Idealµ System Layout AfterAfterCooler ³Wet´ Receiver PrePrefilter Dryer Compressor Air Cooled 1000 CFM Compressor 1000 to 4000 gallon receiver oil coalescing filter Refrigerated air dryer with a 400 F dew point .Real World System .

Layout of Components Compressor .

Air Compressor Purpose  Provide power for pneumatic equipment Benefit  Safe  Clean  Lighter weight equipment .

Types Of Air Compressor  Divided by energy source Electric motor Engine Turbine .

Types Of Air Compressor  Divided Compression Technology Reciprocating Piston Rotary Screw Centrifugal Other sliding vane hook and claw axial flow .

Types Of Air Compressor  Divided by Air Quality Lubricated Oil-Free/Oil-less/Non-Lubricated Downstream clean-up equipment can be used to improve Air Quality .

Layout of Components Compressor Aftercooler .

Aftercooler (Recommended) Purpose  Reduce discharge air temperature  Typical reduction: ambient plus 15-250 F Benefit  Typically removes 60% of moisture content of air  Insures air piping temperature is not a safety hazard .

Layout of Components Aftercooler Compressor ³Wet´Receiver Receiver .

Wet Receiver (Optional) Purpose   Insure reservoir of air is available to system Prevent compressor from cycling too frequently Benefit   Acts as heat sink to reduce air temperature Improves compressor life .

Capacity control matches the output of the compressor to the demand on the system . thus the capacity control system.Receivers And Capacity Control   Rarely does a compressed air system require 100% of the output of the compressor.

Receivers And Capacity Control  Types of capacity control or unloading Auto start/stop Constant speed control On-line/off-line control Modulation control Throttling control Bypass control Variable Speed .

Layout of Components PrePrefilter Aftercooler Compressor ³Wet´Receiver Receiver .

Pre-Filter (Required) Purpose  Remove dirt rust scale  Remove liquid water Benefit  Keep air passages in dryer clean .

Layout of Components Aftercooler PrePrefilter Dryer Compressor ³Wet´Receiver Receiver .

airline moisture content is reduced by over 90%  Reduced maintenance for pneumatic equipment  Improved product quality .Dryers (Recommended) Purpose  Reduce compressed air moisture content Benefit  Including aftercooler.

but cost more to buy and operate.adsorb the moisture in the air Desiccant dryers produce dryer air.lowers the temperature of compressed air to cause moisture to condense. . and then be removed Desiccant .Dryers (Recommended)  Different types or technologies of dryers Refrigerated .

Dryer Issues Moisture Content of Compressed Air Gal./1000 SCFM 180 160 140 120 100 80 60 40 20 0 w/o aftercooler with aftercooler undersized refrigerated dryer correctly sized refrigerated dryer . Water/24 Hr.

Moisture Content ³Rule of Thumb´ Aftercooler Air Compressor 100% RH 100% RH 100% RH 100ºF 80ºF 60ºF Effect of Compressed Air Temperature on sizing of drying equipment. rise in temperature doubles the moisture holding capacity of the air. .Dryers . A 20º F reduction in temperature condenses one half the water vapor in saturated air. A 20º F.

000 SCFM @ 120º F Dryer Size 1.000 SCFM .Dryers .Moisture Content ³Rule of Thumb´ Aftercooler Air Compressor 100% RH 100% RH 100% RH 100ºF 80ºF 60ºF Example: Refrigerated Dryer Compressor Discharge 1.000 SCFM 2.000 SCFM @ 100º F 1.

Layout of Components Aftercooler PrePrefilter Dryer AfterAfterfilter Compressor ³Wet´Receiver Receiver .

After Filter (Recommended) Purpose  Reduce oil carryover Benefit  Improved air quality  Improved product quality Instrument air applications Painting .

Layout of Components AfterAfter-Cooler PrePrefilter Dryer ³Dry´ Receiver Compressor AfterAfterfilter ³Wet´Receiver Receiver .

Dry Receiver (Recommended) Purpose  Provide a reservoir of clean dry air to meet fluctuating system demands Benefit  When sized and installed correctly can minimize airline pressure fluctuations  Prevents short term capacity requirements from overloading cleanup equipment .

Real World Systems Basic Selection Criteria .

Real World Systems Design Criteria  Air Quality Moisture Oil Contaminant  Pressure Drop  Demand Characteristics .

Real World Systems Moisture Content  Pressure Dewpoint .Temperature at which water vapor condenses into liquid in a compressed airline Rule of thumb: Select a dewpoint 10-20 F below the lowest temperature the compressed airlines will see 0 .

e. paint booths. etc. Specific applications have specific dewpoint requirements (i..Real World Systems WARNING: WARNING: This applies only to general industrial application.) Contact equipment OEMs . instruments.

the amount of compressor lubricant or coolant passed down stream of the compressor  PPM .parts per million (by weight).Real World Systems Oil Content Terminology  Oil carryover . Industry standard for determining oil carryover .

Lubricated Rotary Compressors Oil Flooded Oil Free Centrifugal Compressors 50-100 PPM 0 PPM 3-10 PPM 0 PPM 0 PPM .Real World Systems Typical Compressor Carryover Values: Reciprocating Compressors Lubricated Non .

Real World Systems Oil Content Requirements  Whether the oil is removed at the compressor or at the point of use. should be determined by overall plant requirements .

many other applications (paint booths. instrumentation) cannot tolerate it Again overall system requirements should dictate system design .Real World Systems WARNING: WARNING: Although some equipment may benefit from (or even require) lubricant in compressed air.

a compressor can ingest substantial amounts of dirt.Real World Systems Contaminant Content  Dependent on ambient conditions.. dust. etc..  A centralized filter will remove these contaminants .

additional filters may become needlessly expensive .Real World Systems Pressure Drop  Pressure Drop is the cost of air quality Every air clean up device will utilize 2-10 PSI to perform its function Air dryers typically 3-5 PSI Air filters typically 2-10 PSI (dependent on how long the element has been in place) Remember @ 1/2% energy for each PSI.

Real World Systems Demand Characteristics  Receiver size and placement varies depending on plant demand cycle and receiver size  Possible to supply a new intermittent large air user with a properly sized and installed receiver tank .

size receiver to handle the largest event the system will encounter. one gallon of system capacity for each CFM of compressor capacity provides minimum reserve volume  New Rule Of Thumb.Real World Systems Demand Characteristics  The same air user without a tank might require an additional air compressor  Old Rule Of Thumb. .

How Are We Doing?       Questions? Comments? Understanding of Air and the Compression Process? Compressed Air System Understanding? What is in a system. and why? Ready to move on? .

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