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Eugene 'Buddy' Broerman
The Complete Guide to Air Compressor
What is an Air Compressor?
An Air compressor is a mechanical equipment that compresses air and releases it at high pressure. Compressors are used throughout the industry to provide a desired compressed air. A lot is going on behind this power tool that offers faster and more effective performance. The pneumatic control systems operate with a supply of compressed air, which must be accessible in sufficient quantity and at a pressure that satisfies the capacity of the system. The beneficial life of a pneumatic system depends mainly on the preparation of the compressed air. Therefore, the compressor is an essential device in various industries and power plants.
What is Air Compressors Parts?
Various air compressors have different parts based on their types. Nevertheless, because piston and centrifugal models are more prevalent, here we only introduce their components. There are mainly three parts in a piston-type air compressor, including the electric motor, pump, and the receiver. The receivers may be vertical or horizontal, ranging in size and capacity. The primary purpose of an electric motor is to power the pump. The motor drives a pully through belts that transfer power from the motor to the pump pistons through a flywheel and crankshaft. The function of the pump is to compress the air and discharge it into the tank. The receiver tank is storing the compressed air. A check valve at the tank inlet prevents the receiver's compressed air from flowing back into the compressor pump.
What is Air Compressors Types?
Based on their internal mechanisms, air compressors are classified as either positive displacement or dynamic displacement. But, in a detailed manner, they can be divided into the following five types according to the action of their mechanical parts:
- The piston-type or reciprocating compressor, which has a piston that moves back and forth in a cylinder.
- The rotary compressor, which has an out of central rotor that rotates within a cylinder.
- The scroll compressor, which has two spiral-shaped parts. One remains fixed while the other orbits (without spinning) around it.
- The screw compressor, which has two helical (screw-shaped) rotors, including one male and one female. They coincide with each other as they turn, in much the same way a bolt is turned into a threaded opening.
- The centrifugal compressor, which has a high-speed impeller with multiple blades, rotates in a specially-shaped housing. These types are further specified by the number of compression stages, cooling method (air, water, oil), drive method (engine, motor, steam, other), lubrication (oil and Oil-Free), and packaged or custom-built.
What is Air Compressor Working Principles?
Air Compressors come in a few different styles, but the most common are the piston-type and centrifugal models. Piston-type air compressors operate by utilizing the piston to charge the tank with air. As the piston pulls air from the outside, valves and gaskets around it seal the air and prevent it from leaving. Following each cycle, more air is pumped into the chamber, results in increasing its pressure. The process replicates itself, and the pressure becomes higher and higher inside the storage reservoir. A particular sensor installed on the tank senses the pressure and chucks off the compressor driving motor. Whenever the pressure drops in the reservoir, either due to leakage or air usage, the sensor will restart the engine.