Pipes and fittings are components that connect everything in a compressed air system. Piping has the potential to make or break any enterprise that uses compressed air systems in its day-to-day operations.
Because faulty and inefficient piping can result in lost power, it is important to pay attention to the layout, installation, and maintenance of pipes and fittings of compressed air systems. Factors that impact pressure efficiency include obstructions and blockage, moisture, and sharp angles. Undersized piping is one of the biggest problems when delivering the air to the application.
Pipes and fittings are integral to the compressor system running efficiently and properly. If the quality of these components is poor, they can cause leaks and other issues.
Types and Uses of Pipes in Compressed Air Systems
The two basic materials used in pipes for compressed air systems include:
Plastic pipes don’t corrode. As a result, there is a minimum risk of rust and a lower risk of obstructions. The interior surface of the pipe is smooth, which encourages laminar flow. Ideal plastic pipes for piping compressed air are made of acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS). Polyethylene (PE) piping and high-density polyethylene (HDPE) piping are also good choices for compressed air applications. PVC is not recommended and is an OSHA violation if used. It degrades and can burst, causing damage and is very dangerous to employees exposed to it.
Metal pipes are the preferred choice for compressed air systems.
Black steel is commonly used in compressed air systems. The material is strong and durable, but time-consuming in labor. It is heavy but susceptible to corrosion. The threaded connections can also slip and leak.
Galvanized steel is widely used in compressor systems. It is less susceptible to corrosion. The galvanized coating can flake off and cause blockages in air stream applications.
Copper pipes are corrosion-free and easy to cut and weld. They can be pressed together with special fittings and tools. They are lightweight and have a wide range of fittings available for compressed air systems. They also have a very smooth interior for a solid laminar flow.
Aluminum pipes have anti-corrosive properties. It is lightweight, which makes it easy to carry around and install. The fittings are easy to put together.
A stainless-steel pipe can be welded and pressed easily. The interiors and exteriors have no risk of degradation and corrosion. Stainless steel is heavy and this can make it difficult to fit. The high cost of this material makes it less common in compressed air applications.
Use of Fittings in Compressed Air Systems
Fittings (push-in) are an ideal choice for connecting and disconnecting lines without the use of tools. Our vast selection of fittings includes:
- Bulkhead unions
- Male elbows
- Male swivel elbows
- Male connectors
- Female elbows
- Female connectors
These fittings are available in nickel-plated brass, steel, and nylon plated brass. The ability to quickly connect them can save substantial time during assembly. The fittings are reusable, which enables you to connect and disconnect again and again. These components can help keep a compressed air system running as smoothly as possible.
Compressed Air Systems provides high quality compressed air pipes, pneumatic fittings, and compressed air parts and fittings to keep the compressed air system operating efficiently. Contact us to receive more information about different types of compressed air pipes and fittings.
Air compressors support a broad range of critical functions for the aerospace sector ranging from fuel injection to metal finishing. Compressors are also a critical element in manufacturing quality control, where they help to simulate the pressures that aircraft components will endure while in flight.
Aeronautical engineers rely on air compressors for a wide variety of applications at nearly all phases of production. As such, the selection of high-quality compressors is essential to operational success for many different functions of the aerospace sector.
Aerospace Air Compressors Applications
Manufacturers of aircraft components must prevent contamination. Common air compressors may mix air with lubricants, presenting a significant contamination risk for applications that require purity.
This risk can be eliminated through the use of oil-free compressors, which see frequent use in a variety of clean rooms and manufacturing facilities for this purpose. Meanwhile, lubricated compressors still play a vital role in less demanding applications throughout the aerospace industry.
Common air compressor aerospace applications include:
- Potable water supply on commercial aircraft
- Air separation
- Electronics and galley cooling
- Sampling and analysis of gases
- Radioactive, toxic and costly gas processing
- Semiconductor process gas handling
- Oxygen and nitrogen generation
- Waveguide dehydration and pressurization
- Vacuum waste systems
- General military use
- Weapons systems development
- Aircraft engine manufacturing
- Structural testing of wings
- Compressed air supply for bench testing
- Ground support equipment
Aerospace Air Compressors from Compressed Air Systems
Compressed Air Systems offers a full product line of air compressors specifically designed to meet the demands of the aerospace industry. The two primary types of air compressors for these applications include rotary screw air compressors and reciprocating air compressors.
- Rotary Screw Air Compressors
When continuous use of large air volumes at higher pressures is common, rotary air compressors provide an optimal solution. The continuous sweeping motion of the compressor also eliminates the pulsation or surging of airflow.
- Reciprocating Air Compressors
Intermittent-use applications favor reciprocating compressors. Also known as a piston compressor, these units utilize the energy put into them very efficiently and tend to last longer. However, the reciprocating motion of the pistons produces pulses and surges in airflow that may be undesirable for some applications.
Oil-Free or Lubricated
Our oil-free compressors provide an ideal solution for demanding aerospace applications such as breathable air systems, engine startup, automatic tool changes, and aircraft manufacturing. For less demanding uses, our standard lubricated compressors feature advanced filtration and air/fluid separation systems to reduce the risk of damage to sensitive equipment and provide greater peace of mind to users.
Air compressors play a vital role in a broad range of applications within the aerospace industry. Dependable, contaminant-free air compression contributes to the safe operation and optimal performance of equipment produced by the aerospace sector.
Compressed Air Systems provides quality air compressors for a wide range of aerospace applications. Contact us to discuss our line of air compressors and how they can support your aerospace project.
The importance of using air compressors for food and beverage processing applications cannot be overstated. Many steps of the manufacturing process benefit from the use of compressed air, such as:
• Food mixing
• Packaging movement
• Pumping fluids
• Air filtration
This last step is arguably the most important role of air compressors in the food and beverage industry. Filtering out contaminated air is essential to creating sanitary food products, helping you preserve customer health and avoid liability.
For this reason, air compressors used in food manufacturing environments must be held to the highest standards. For example, if your processes fill a ready-to-eat package with contaminated air, the dirt or bacteria in that air will travel directly to your customer. This poses a risk not only to them, but to your business as well.
Therefore, choosing a dependable, efficient, and oil-free air compressor for your manufacturing application is vital for ensuring that you deliver the highest-quality products possible. Here, we outline a few of the ways you can best incorporate air compressors into your facility.
Applications for Food and Beverage Air Compressors
Compressed air is a powerful tool for many different applications within the food and beverage industry. Imagine a hypothetical manufacturing facility that uses compressed air for the production of yogurt. In one area of the factory, compressed air pushes flavoring powders through tubes to mix them with uncultured yogurt. In another area, compressed air supplies oxygen to the yogurt as it cultures. Once the yogurt finishes culturing, additional processes place it into containers cleaned using compressed air. Throughout these automated process, the air also opens valves and actuators for filling and bottling.
Although this is only one example of the use of compressed air in food processing, this technique can benefit food processing applications in many different ways. Air compressors can spray oil and dispense liquids such as soft drinks, condiments, or beer. Compressed air generators can produce ozone to treat water or to generate nitrogen to create nitrogenized beer. The air can be used directly on the food as an air knife or on the packaging for agitation, transfer, or sealing.
The uses for food-grade air compressors are almost endless. Some other applications for air compressors include:
● Bakeries (to spray vegetable oil)
● Coffee automats
● Mixing foods
● Pilot air
Uses for Food and Beverage Air Compressors
Because of the wide range of pressures that air compressors can generate, they can be used in many different places on your product line. Here are just a few examples of how food and beverage processors use air compressors every day:
• As raw ingredients and materials enter a factory, compressed air sorts them based on weight
• High-pressure compressed air peels and slices fruits and vegetables such as carrots, onions, and apples
• Worker use compressed air to wash down packaging machines and keep the factory sanitary
• Compressed air pushes fillings into pie crusts or other stuffed pastries
• Diaphragm pumps move around the liquid filling to ensure even distribution
• Low-pressure compressed air blows off crumbs from baked products
• Workers use blow-molding to create specialized packaging
• Compressed air cleans packages and vacuum seals food products inside
• Cold compressed air freezes products for shipping and retail
As you can see, compressed air is integral to every step of the manufacturing process in the food and beverage industry. Because of its usefulness, some people call compressed air the fourth utility, saying that it is just as important to manufacturing as running water, heat, and electricity.
Learn More About the Advantages of Air Compression with Compressed Air Systems
At Compressed Air Systems, we have the knowledge to provide you with the best air compressors to suit your manufacturing needs. We have been in business since 1963, and we sell, service, and rent all types of pneumatic tools and equipment.
Contact us if you would like to learn more about how compressed air can help your business.
Air receiver tanks, also called compressed air tanks or simply air receivers, are crucial elements of compressed air systems. Air receiver tanks have two main purposes: to serve as short-term storage units during temporary demand spikes, and to help systems perform more efficiently overall.
To think of it another way, air receiver tanks perform much like batteries: By utilizing stored energy, a lower-horsepower machine can be employed to complete a larger task. Because of the massive amount of pressure these tanks are often under — not to mention their vital importance in compressed air systems — they must be both durable and strong.
There are two kinds of air receivers: wet and dry. Wet receivers are placed immediately after the compressor.
In addition to serving as storage tanks, these receivers also help reduce moisture. Dry receivers, on the other hand, are placed after the air dryer or other air preparation equipment, and can minimize drops in the air pressure of a compressor system.
1. Integrating Air Receiver Tanks Into Your Facility
Typically, an air receiver tank is sized at six to 10 times the flow rate of the compressed air system. By law, tanks must have a pressure relief valve and a pressure gauge. The relief valve is typically set to 10% higher than the working pressure of the system.
Also, it’s crucial to have either a manual drain or an automatic drain on the receiver tank so water can be easily removed from the system.
The removal of moisture is especially important in cold weather, as moisture can accumulate and reenter the flow of outgoing air. Plus, if the temperature falls below 32 °F, the condensate line will freeze, potentially damaging the pipe.
Moisture can also cause rust and scale to form on the inside of the tank, both of which can be carried in the outgoing air and cause premature blockages of filters. A coalescing filter and air dryer usually are placed downstream of the receiver tank.
Air compressors — typically smaller-range ones — may be “tank-mounted” on top of an air receiver. Space-constrained plants usually opt for this arrangement. However, this won’t work for most larger compressors, as they’re much more top-heavy and would pose a danger.
2. The Importance of Air Receiver Tanks
In addition to storing energy and optimizing the efficiency of compressed air systems, air receiver tanks perform several other important duties.
First, they help regulate compressor controls to prevent short cycling and over pressurization. Failing to install a receiver — or using one that’s too small — will cause a compressor to rapid cycle, which can cause a range of different issues.
Next, an air receiver tank also serves as a second heat exchanger. As air passes through it, the air temperature drops about 10° below what it was after cooling via the first heat exchanger.
Air receiver tanks also precipitate some of the moisture and oil carryover that may be present in the compressed air as it leaves the compressor or is carried over from the after-cooler.
And finally, these versatile tanks help reduce the dew point and temperature spikes that can occur after regeneration.
Air receiver tanks serve a critical role in compressed air systems across a range of different industries. In fact, not using one can be downright dangerous.
Need help selecting an air receiver tank for your specific application needs? Reach out to the team at Compressed Air Systems (CAS) today to request a quote and discuss your options with an expert.
Air compressors are used in a variety of industries to provide compressed and pressurized air for many applications. These devices are now even used to power construction and manufacturing equipment and to drive control system valves; earlier compressors were much less versatile. The advent of air compressors dates back thousands of years.