Some Considerations for Designing an Air Burst System

Air Burst System

Air burst systems are a standard requirement for municipalities and industries that draw water from rivers, lakes or ponds. The air burst system is designed to keep intake screens below the water level clear of debris and silt which accumulate as a result of inward water flow. The basic principle is to displace these materials with a high volume blast of compressed air in reverse flow direction through the screens. The systems are normally designed to be automatic and operate on a timed basis, calling for an air burst usually once or twice a day, or as required/established, depending upon … Read the rest

Purge Economizer Controls

Purge Economizer Controls Air Power Products Limited has been supplying our “Purge Economizer Control$” systems for over 25 years. The original intent was to supply our customers with a system that not only save compressed air, but would also indicate what those savings amount to. The second initiative was to provide these features at a reasonable cost that would provide a quick ROI for the user. That was 25 years ago! Today the issues of saving compressed air is of even greater importance as the cost of electrical services rise. Not only are these issues recognized by compressed air users, but they are … Read the rest

The Importance of Prefilter Maintenance and Drainage

When it comes to proper desiccant dryer performance one of the most common culprits resulting in poor dew point performance, is lack of prefilter maintenance and/or faulty prefilter drain operation. Most oil coalescing prefilter elements should be replaced at 2000 hours of service. Without a disciplined PM schedule to replace these elements and to confirm proper prefilter bowl drain operation, you run the risk of contaminating the desiccant bed.

Manual drain valves on the bottom of these filters are often problematic when not drained in a timely fashion, allowing oil to re-entrain into the airstream, causing oil to enter the … Read the rest

Twintower Desiccant Air Dryer Sizing

Twintower Desiccant Air DryerWhen it comes to properly sizing a dryer, there are some misconceptions that often lead to incorrect, or over-sizing of a compressed air dryer.

Most people charged with the responsibility of designing the compressed air system or installation of a correctly sized air dryer, typically match the inlet capacity with the compressor maximum output.  This is especially incorrect when sizing for an air-cooled reciprocating air compressor.  Reciprocating air compressors are typically air cooled, and use pitched vanes on the pump flywheel which drive cooling air across finned cylinders to allow/assist in the air cooling and heat dissipation.  These pumps are … Read the rest

Changing Compressor Oil

Lubricated reciprocating air compressors, like an automobile, require regular oil changes to ensure that bearings and piston skirts are receiving clean lubricant to prevent metal to metal contact. Most small reciprocating compressor manufacturers recommend oil changes every 12 months or 500 hours – whichever comes first. Many small reciprocating air compressors may operate on single phase power directly fed by a breaker. Three phase models may use an economically priced off-the-shelf magnetic motor starter. In both of these scenarios, there is usually no provision made to log hours on the compressor.

The Problem with Start/Stop Air Compressors
The problem … Read the rest

Desiccant Air Dryer Types, Application Considerations and Solutions

AP-100-FP-A-compressorAlthough heatless dryers are simple in design, very reliable, and generally a low maintenance machine, the high cost to produce purge air for their use is a drawback to their use. Purge consumption may actually represent a higher percentage of actual air demand, as heatless dryers on a fixed time cycle will continue to use the same volume of purge air regardless of system demand. This excess purging will result in lower dew points which are usually not a requirement. As the dryers are normally over-sized to account for peak demand, and that demand may be reduced substantially throughout the

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When Will A Refrigerant Dryer Not Provide Suitable Drying?

In some applications, compressed air lines may be exposed to temperature below freezing levels. In these applications, the pressure dew point must be reduced to below the levels that a refrigerant air dryer can achieve, in order to prevent ice from forming in the compressed air lines. There are many applications where compressed air may come into contact with chemicals, food products or other products in which water vapor in the compressed air may interact negatively in the process. These applications are referred to as “process” applications, and it is often necessary to remove almost all of the water vapor

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When Should A Refrigerant Dryer Be Used?

Refrigerant Dryer

There are several types of compressed air dryers on the market, and many different applications for drying compressed air. Many industrial and commercial applications for compressed air will be for hand tools or the operation of pneumatic cylinders and valves in an indoor applications. These are referred to as “power” applications. For the most part, these applications require the air to be free of condensate (free liquid), which will impede the tool’s performance and cause corrosion, shortening the life of the tool. Refrigerant air dryers are usually selected for these applications. They remove water vapor from the compressed air by … Read the rest

Why do I Have Water in My Compressed Air Line?

When air is compressed to approximately 1/7 of it atmospheric volume (for 100 PSIG applications), there is a rise in temperature during the compression phase. This temperature rise allows water vapor in the air to be held in suspension during the compression stage. As a general rule of thumb, air will hold almost double the amount of water vapor in suspension with every 20ºF in temperature rise. This temperature rise is normally anywhere from 170 to 400ºF (76 – 205ºC) depending upon the type of air compressor being used. After compression, the air will cool as it travels through piping, … Read the rest