Atmospheric air contains more water vapor at high temperatures and less at lower temperatures. This has an effect on the water concentration when the air is compressed.
For example, a compressor with a working pressure of 7 bar and a capacity of 200 l/s that compresses air at 20˚C with a relative humidity of 80% will release 10 liters/hour of water in the compressed air line. Problems and disturbances can occur due to water precipitation in the pipes and connected equipment. To avoid this, the compressed air must be dried.
Different drying methods
There are a number of ways to dry compressed air, most of them are listed below.
- Refrigerant dryers
- Over compression
- Absorption and Adsorption Drying (Desiccant dryers)
- Membrane dryers
How to dispose of the condensate after drying the air?
Anyone who runs a compressed air system (using oil-injected technology) needs to be aware of how to properly dispose of the condensate in a responsible manner, so as not to infringe any environmental laws. The condensate released by compressed air equipment will have tiny particles of oil in that are not visible to the naked eye, which is why it needs proper disposal. Not only is incorrect disposal detrimental to the environment, but you could also incur a fine and damage to your reputation as a responsible company.
There are many rules concerning the disposal of waste generally, as you will no doubt be aware if you have paid a recent visit to your local recycling centre and compared that to a visit only a few years ago. Don’t let your compressed air supply catch you out without doing a fairly easy first check.