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Mobile

Compressors

Recognize, name and state the function of each component in a


compressed air system.
Use graphical symbols to represent a compressed system.
Define terminology relating to compressed air supply systems i.e.
a). compressor rating b). free air delivery c). absolute pressure d).
atmospheric pressure e). gauge pressure f). relief pressure
Describe mobile and stationary compressor cooling requirements.
State the need for speed and pressure control, and describe the
construction and operation of different regulating systems.
Describe the construction and operation of;
a). single and multistage rotary compressors
b). single and multistage reciprocating compressors

Objectives continues

Describe the construction and operation of;


a). single and multistage rotary compressors
b). single and multistage reciprocating compressors
Describe rotary and reciprocating compressor lubrication systems.
State the starting, running and stopping procedures for mobile
compressors.
List working practices and servicing requirements of mobile
compressors.
Describe reasons for using and the types and construction of filters
and water separators in a mobile compressor air system.

Mobile
Compressors

Introduction

The term pneuma comes from the greeks meaning breath or wind.
Pneumatics is the study of air movement

Today pneumatics is mainly understood to mean the application of air as


a working medium in industry, especially the driving and controlling of
machines.

Components

Air Filter

To remove dust particles and dirt from the air being sucked
in

Air silencer

Dampens out nose

First stage compressor

A machine, which usually sucks in air and compresses


same so that it ultimately occupies a smaller volume. The
resulting air will not only occupy a smaller volume, it will
have a higher pressure and higher temperature

Intercooler

Works like a heat exchanger and lower the density of the


compressed air between stages

Second stage compressor

A second phase of compression, which further increases airflow


rate & temperature

Drive motor

Provides drive to the two


stage compressor system.

Relief Valve

Maintains system pressure, works like an unloader


valve

Pressure gauges

An instrument that reads pressure contained in


the system

After-cooler

Works like a heat exchanger and lower the


density of the compressed air after stages

Automatic Drain Traps


Drains condensate in air tanks and at various
points in the system

Moisture separator

Works together with the auto


drain valve by containing
moisture and water out of the
system

Air receiver

For storage

Stop valve

For air receiver protection

Safety valve

Back up for the stop valve


For graphical symbols, use
notes on air brakes

Terminology

Free air delivery

This is the actual quantity of air delivered,


expressed in l/s (m3/min) at the conditions of
temperature and pressure existing at the inlet to the
compressor. This figure is lower than the piston
displacement due to the fact that no compressor
can be 100% efficient

Compressor rating/capacity

Piston displacement is the volume swept by the first


stage piston or pistons i.e. bore x r.p.m

Relief pressure

Maximum pressure reached before exhausting air to


the atmosphere when the required pressure is
exceeded

Atmospheric Pressure

This is a pressure which varies the world over and fluctuates


with weather conditions. Its is also dependent upon altitude

Absolute Pressure

This is a pressure measured from a base of absolute zero. We


breathe air at a pressure of approximately 14.7 pounds per
square inch absolute (psi). We dont notice this pressure
because it is always around us and its called atmospheric
pressure.

However, if we look at an unused pressure gauge it reads 0 psi.


The absolute pressure of a system therefore equals the sum of
Atmospheric Pressure and Gauge pressure

Advantages

Air is available in unlimited quantities


everywhere

Compressed air is easily conveyed in pipelines


even over larger distances

Compressed air can be stored

Compressed air need not be returned. It can be


vented to atmosphere after it has performed
work

Compressed air is explosion proof. Thus, no


expensive protective equipment against
explosion is necessary

Compressed air is insensitive to temperature fluctuations.


This ensures reliable operation even in extreme
temperature conditions.

Compressed air is clean. This is especially important in


the food, wood, textile and leather industries.

Operating elements for compressed air operation are of


simple and inexpensive construction

Compressed air is fast. Thus high operational speeds can


be attained

Speeds and forces of the pneumatics elements can be


infinitely adjusted.

Disadvantages

Compressed air is a relatively expensive means of


conveying energy. The higher energy costs are ,
however, largely compensated by the cheaper
elements, simple and more compact equipment

Compressed air requires good conditioning. No dirt or


moisture residues may be contained in it (wear on
tools and equipment).

It is not possible to achieve uniform and constant


piston speeds (Air is compressible)

Compressed air is economical only up to a certain force. Owing to


the commonly used working pressure of 700 kPa, the limit is at
about 20 000 to 30 000 Newton, depending on the travel and the
speed (if the force which is required exceeds this level, hydraulics is
applied.
The exhaust is loud. As a result of the intensive development work
on materials for silencing purposes, this problem has however now
largely been solved.
The oil mist mixed with the air for lubricating the equipment escapes
with the exhaust to atmosphere.

Types of Compressors

Reciprocating

Has a piston
Inlet and outlet valves
Cylinder head
Con-rod
Crankshaft
Lubricated by the engine
Lubrication System

Rotary

Rotor
Vanes
Oil lubricating pump
Drive coupling

Note: oil mist is ejected into the air stream for components
lubrication

Screw Compressor

Screw compressor
operation.

Root blower

Compressor cooling requirements

Increased cooling surfaces area


A continuous supply of cooling water
Metals with excellent thermal conductivity
Good ventilation

Compressor
Cooling
Cooling fins on smaller
compressors allow the
heat to be removed by
radiation. Larger
compressors are
equipped with an
additional fan to
remove heat.

Water circulation
cooling or fresh
water cooling.

Why Pressure control or Pressure regulation?

Pressure control for economical reasons. To avoid the


compressor from over running

Usually the discharge is the control variable

Types of control depends on prime mover/ engine &


distribution network

Automatic (speed variation, inlet throttling, unloading & on-off


type)

Pressure Regulation

Air filters & Water


separators

Purpose of air filters

The filter is intended to


extract particles of dirt
from the air and allow
condensate to collect & be
drained off.

The air filter used may


either be the dry or wet
type

Purpose of water
separator

To trap any water that may


condense in the system

Compressor lubrication

Purpose

The lubricator is intended to enrich the


compressed air with air and oil mist in order
to ensure lubrication of the moving parts in
pneumatic devices

Starting, running & stopping procedure

Refer to notes

Startup Procedure for Motor-Driven


Compressors.
Proceed as follows:
Open all shutoff valves between compressor
and receiver.
Make sure compressor is unloaded. Consult
the manufacturer's instructions for procedure.
Turn on cooling water, if provided. Thoroughly
vent cylinder jackets and coolers if vents are
provided.
Turn compressor over by hand to see that all
parts are free.
Start compressor motor.
When up to speed, apply load if machine is
running smoothly.

Startup Procedure for Steam-Driven Reciprocating


Compressors.
Proceed as follows:
Open all shutoff valves between compressor and receiver.
Turn on cooling water services ensuring cylinder jackets and
coolers are thoroughly vented.
Make sure compressor is unloaded by opening the separator
drain valve or the compressor cylinder indicator cocks.
Open valve chest, exhaust, and steam cylinder drain valves.
Open the drain valve on the steam admission line above the
throttle valve. When all condensation has drained from the
line and the pipe is hot, close the drain valve until it is open
approximately one-fourth of a turn.
Crack opens the throttle valve and allows the steam cylinder
to warm up.

Open steam exhaust valve.


Slowly open the throttle valve and allow the
governor to take over control.
Close the drain valves when steam discharge is free
of condensate.
When the compressor is up to speed, slowly build
up the load.

Startup Procedure for New or Overhauled


Compressors.

When starting a new compressor, or one that has been


overhauled, allow the compressor to run unloaded for 1
or 2 hours to give the running surfaces a polished finish.
Periodically check for overheating.
Build up load gradually over a period of several hours.
After a few days of operation, shut down compressor and
recheck all cylinder head, valve cover, cylinder flange,
shaft cover, and foundation bolts for tightness.2-4