Centrifugal Air Compressors: The Best Kept Secret in Compressed Air

When it comes to deciding on air compressors, most people look at rotary screw types that are either lubricated or non-lubricated. This is justified when the horsepower of the compressor falls between 10 and 250 hp, but what about when the compressor is at or above 250 hp? Is the rotary screw the air compressor of choice or are there other options available?  If you are like the majority of people, the centrifugal air compressor is probably not on your list of options.

For a compressor type that has been around for 50 years – longer than the rotary screw air compressor – the centrifugal air compressor is relatively unknown. It has been the main workhorse of the process, air separation and energy generation industries where oil-free large horsepower compressors were needed.

However, in the last 20 years, the centrifugal air compressor has been reengineered to meet the demands of the plant air compressor market. Its best design features were combined with modern electronic controls to interface with or replace rotary screw air compressors.

C. A. C. highlights:

Oil-free compressed air: The C.A.C. is by nature oil-free. This makes it very adaptable for applications that require oil-free air, but it also reduces the filtration and maintenance requirements in applications that would not normally require oil-free.

Reduced maintenance: This option has the lowest maintenance requirement of any of the types of rotary screw air compressors either oil-flooded or oil-free.

Small package: No other air compressor delivers the volume of air per ft² footprint requirement. In many cases the floor space required is ½ that of a comparable rotary screw air compressor.

Extended oil life: Due to the low operating oil temperature, normally 120 °F, and the fact that the oil does not mix with process air, the life of the lubricating oil can extend as long as 2 years. The less strenuous oil requirements not only allows for an increase in oil life, but also a decrease in oil and disposal costs.

Efficiency:  When it comes to cfm/kW, no other air compressor technology can match it in performance.

Reliability:  Its non-wearing basic design makes it one of the most reliable compressor available and the compressor of choice for industries where reliability is of utmost importance.

For more information please contact us at 651.452.8452 or visit www.jhfoster.com.

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