Did you know that all atmospheric air contains some amount of water vapor. When air is compressed, the water concentration increases. To avoid future problems in the compressor installation, the compressed air needs to be treated. In this article we talk about drying the air using a refrigerated compressed air dryer.
What is Refrigerated Drying?
Refrigerated or refrigerant drying means that the compressed air is cooled, which allows a large amount of the water to condense and be separated. After cooling and condensing, the compressed air is reheated to around room temperature so that condensation does not form on the outside of the pipe system. This heat exchange between ingoing and outgoing compressed air also reduces the temperature of the incoming compressed air, and as such reduces the required cooling capacity of the refrigerant circuit. Cooling the compressed air takes place via a closed refrigerated system.
Smart steering of the refrigerant compressed air dryer via intelligent control algorithms can significantly reduce the power consumption of modern refrigerated dryers. Refrigerated dryers are used for dew points between +2˚C to +10˚C and have a lower limit, which is the freezing point of the condensed water. They are available as either a freestanding machine or an integrated drying module inside the compressor. The latter has the advantage of having a small footprint and ensures optimized performance for the particular air compressor capacity.
Modern refrigerated dryers use refrigerant gases with a low Global Warming Potential (GWP), which means refrigerant gases that -when accidentally released into the atmosphere- contribute less to global warming. Future refrigerants will have an even lower GWP value, as dictated by environmental legislation.