Atmospheric moisture is damaging to industrial compressed air processes. Excessive water vapor present in an industrial air stream can affect the operation of pneumatic systems, air motors, electronic controls and accelerate equipment wear. High levels of water vapor are likely to cause rusting or increased wear as equipment lubrications are washed away.
The use of any compressed air dryer also carries the additional cost of operation, however. According to carbontrust.com, “of the total energy supplied to a compressor, as little as 8-10% is converted into useable energy at the point of use.”
Finding the compressed air dryer fit for your needs can be difficult. SPX FLOW designs energy-efficient yet proficient compressed air dryers and dehydration systems. A dehydration system is vital to long term operation. Selecting the proper dryer could have a noticeable difference on the additional cost surrounding the compressed air process.
Compressed air dryers are a primary example of air filtration and treatment often utilized within the manufacturing industry. Microscopic levels of water vapor in a factory’s airstream can be corrosive to industrial equipment, tools and processes. High water content in open air can cause corrosion in tanks, piping and electronics, the washing out of lubricating oils in pumps and emulsify grease in cylinders. Such an extensive level of process disruption can be limited with the use of a compressed air dryer, to filter a factory’s air stream.
Desiccant compressed air dryers function by drawing water vapor into a porous high-water affinity medium. Often placed down-stream or used as a second stage dryer because desiccant compressed air dryers rely on a relatively unsaturated medium to operate effectively. As a second stage dryer, the water vapor pulled into the machine is lower than at the first stage, allowing for the desiccant dryer to product dew points in the sub-zero temperature range.
Refrigerated compressed air dryers operate by cooling an air stream to 38 degrees Fahrenheit to condense the water vapor in the airflow. The air dryers cool the air to 38 degrees to avoid the freezing of water vapor. Freezing vapor can block the condensate from draining effectively, or due to the expanding nature of water as it freezes, the freezing vapor could potentially crack the heat exchanger connected to the system. In either case, the effectiveness of the refrigerated compressed air dryer will be heavily restricted.
Refrigerated compressed air dryers are typically connected to two separate heat exchangers. One heat exchanger for air-to-air refrigeration and one for air-to-refrigeration heat transfers. These two heat exchangers are utilized to cool the hot incoming air with cold outgoing air while preventing re-condensation by increasing the temperature of outgoing air.
Coalescing filters consolidate water vapor present in compressed air by forcing the air stream through a microscopically porous medium. The pores of the medium are large enough for air to flow through but not water, therefore separating the two to a degree. However, coalescing filters are often highly fragile making the internal microscopic lattice of the device sensitive to contaminants. Due to this, coalescing filters are recommended for use in second-stage air filtration or in pairs for first-stage air filtration.
SPX FLOW air and gas treatment departments are focused on the innovation of air filtration technologies. SPX FLOW is a leading global innovator in the energy-efficient design of air filtration and dehydration process solutions. Awarded the 2018 Jang Yeongsil Award for exceptional energy-saving initiatives, SPX FLOW is actively developing new, efficient technologies within the air and gas treatment industry.
The SPX FLOW FLEX Series refrigerated compressed air dryer is a high-performance unit integrating phase change material to effectively reduce industrial energy cost. The FLEX Series refrigerated compressed air dryer utilizes a phase change material to what absorbs latent heat and is released within the materials phase change process. This attribute allows the phase change material to draw in heat from warm, moisture-rich compressed air with no significant change in temperature.
Designed to meet the industrial compressed air filtration needs without significant waste. The SPX FLOW FLEX Series refrigerated compressed air dryer syncs to the input of compressed air. The FLEX Series can be sized to the maximum compressed air load without a material energy consumption penalty.
SPX FLOW offers a several refrigerated and desiccant dehydration and air filtration systems, but the core advantage to SPX FLOW products is the development of custom air filtration solutions. SPX FLOW host a global network of Innovation and Design Centers, of which several are dedicated to the innovation of air and gas treatment. By leveraging the depth of industry knowledge SPX FLOW dehydration engineers possess, SPX FLOW can fabricate custom air filtration systems to a customer’s need. The extensive research completed at SPX FLOW research and development centers is used to further the technology of SPX FLOW industrial equipment.