Making up an impressive 78% of the air we breathe, nitrogen (N2) is harnessed for industrial use worldwide. Its inert nature means it doesn't react with other gases, so it doesn't cause any oxidization. In addition, Nitrogen tanks are dry, so there's reduced damage from moisture. It is a colorless, odorless and non-flammable gas but, in high concentrations, is harmful to humans.
A nitrogen generator is a valuable addition to any compressed air system, particularly in manufacturing processes that require a constant supply and/or high purity operations.
Low purity nitrogen is classed within the 95-99% band. Therefore, it is not suitable for use in sectors that use systems requiring the highest clean air classification. Instead, it comes into its own for tire inflation (it is lighter than air, ideal for aerospace) and then especially in the prevention and control of fires in the oil and gas industries. Nitrogen displaces oxygen, depriving the fire of the bulk of its fuel, and has a broader application in helping protect sprinkler systems from corrosion.
High purity nitrogen is classed as 99.999% (or ten parts per million) plus. This highest concentration of nitrogen has applications in the production of food and beverages, electronics, PET bottling, chemicals and pharmaceuticals. All industries where any trace of a contaminant in the process would have disastrous results.
Dependent on the requirements of the job, there are two main types of nitrogen generators:
Membrane Nitrogen Generator
Used to supply industries with low nitrogen purity, these variants are easy to install and start-up faster than their counterparts. In addition, they offer a short payback time after the initial investment with a long life cycle of 15-20 years of continuous use.
Compressed air is passed through the generator, where the heavier molecules of nitrogen are trapped in high fiber membranes, leaving oxygen and the remaining gases to escape. The collected nitrogen then passes through other processes before being made available for use.
Pressure swing adsorption (PSA) Nitrogen Generator
Fuelled by an air compressor, this dual tank system utilizes an adsorbent and alternate use of pressure (the pressure swing) to capture the purist nitrogen in a regenerative, constant supply. Having the system on-site does away with complex and costly air separation processes and is a sustainable, energy-efficient way of nitrogen generation.
The initial outlay for installing your own generator might appear prohibitive until you do the math.
Having an on-site generator means:
Ask us about nitrogen generators today.