Onsite Nitrogen for Renewable Energy
Nitrogen gas offers a variety of uses for many manufacturers in the industrial world but transporting nitrogen generators to your facility can bring a host of challenges, added costs, and safety issues. By setting up onsite nitrogen generation, you displace the requirement of having to purchase the gas and bypass many of the challenges that come with transporting the gas to your facility. Here’s what you need to know about the benefits of onsite nitrogen generators, and how this valuable gas is vital for renewable energy applications like wind turbine operation and refinery co-processing.
Nitrogen Applications for Renewable Energy
Wind Turbine Operation
One of the most well-known sources of renewable energy is the use of wind turbines. They generate electricity as wind blows and turns giant blades. The spinning blades turn an electrical generator and activate a hydraulic system and the accumulator, which create energy that can be stored and used as needed. The accumulator consists of two compartments: one filled with gas, and the other full of fluid.
An inert gas is required to keep the compartments separate and to operate the turbine. When supplied continuously, nitrogen gas can prevent these two components from mixing if there is a leak. Nitrogen is the ideal gas for this system because it does not absorb moisture and would not combust, produce hazardous pollutants, or create environmental hazards.
Wood Biomass Fuel
Wood biomass is a popular fuel for carbon-neutral, renewable energy generation. Giant silos house the wood pellets that are used for production, and while they are stored for exportation there is a higher risk of fire safety hazards. This is one of the biggest concerns with wood-pellet storage.
To reduce this risk, it is important to eliminate gases like methane in the air, which can be produced from biological and chemical reaction activities. Since these gases are combustible, injecting inert nitrogen gas into the silo in sufficient volumes will lower the fire hazard risks.
Nitrogen gas is also involved in the bioenergy process of turning forest and agricultural waste products into fuel. This application, known as refinery co-processing, requires the use of biowaste (e.g. wood chips) as raw material and converts it to ASTM (American Society for Texting and Materials) specification renewable gasoline and diesel. Biocrude fuel can also be used for heating and cooling commercial and industrial grade boilers.
Since fuel oil is extremely combustible, nitrogen gas is used to inert refined fuel oil tanks and prevent hazards like fires and explosions.
Benefits of Nitrogen Generators for Renewable Energy Applications
The cost of having liquid nitrogen delivered to your facility depends on factors like market costs and your delivery location. Not only do you have to consider actual nitrogen costs but there are also tank rental fees, delivery charges, hazmat charges, product loss and defects, and other associated charges. By shifting to onsite nitrogen generation, you can significantly reduce your costs and save on your bottom line, regardless of your location.
Minimizes Environmental Impact
Another concern for most manufacturers today is their ability to reduce their facilities’ environmental impact. You may have noticed that more companies are labelling their products and practices as “green” or sustainable because of the growing concern of the impact manufacturers have on the environment. By shifting to onsite nitrogen generation, you can quickly increase efficiency, reduce costs and lower your environmental impact by eliminating transportation requirements. This will go a long way for the reputation you have with your employees and customers.
High-Quality Nitrogen Generators for Your Business
There are three main nitrogen generators you can choose from when it comes to generating renewable energy for your business. Here are the three to consider.
PSA Nitrogen Generators
Pressure Swing Absorption (PSA) Nitrogen Generators use two towers full of carbon molecular sieve (CMS). As compressed air enters the bottom of the “online” tower and flows up through the CMS, oxygen and other trace gases are adsorbed, allowing nitrogen to pass through. After a pre-set time, the online tower will automatically switch to regenerative mode and will vent contaminants from the CMS. Since CMS has a much narrower range of pore openings, small molecules like oxygen can penetrate and separate the oxygen molecules from nitrogen molecules as nitrogen molecules are too large to be adsorbed by the CMS. The larger nitrogen molecules bypass the CMS and enter into the process stream as nitrogen gas. These nitrogen generators can be used for nitrogen purity ranges from 95% to 99.999%+ but are most often used in applications where the nitrogen purity requirement is greater than 98%.
Membrane Nitrogen Generators
Membrane Nitrogen Generators are a cost-effective option for onsite nitrogen gas generation. Using the latest membrane technology, which separates nitrogen from other gases in the air, these generators are efficient for low nitrogen purity requirements up to 98% and can be designed to be mobile if required. These generators work by introducing compressed air into one or more permeable hollow fiber type membrane modules. The membrane is designed so that oxygen molecules will be filtered out of the compressed air stream under pressure leaving nitrogen to discharge out of the membrane module. Product flow can be increased or decreased to adjust nitrogen purity as required. Membrane systems typically produce a product purity of 95% to 98% but nitrogen purity of up to 99.9% can be achieved.
Custom Engineered System
If your renewable energy operation requires a custom-built nitrogen generation system, you can get a completely customized nitrogen generating system to meet your specific needs. Once it is built it can be quickly installed, typically in a day.
Get Quality Nitrogen Generators at Advanced Gas Technologies
It’s easy to see why having your own onsite nitrogen generator is beneficial to your business, employees, customers, and the planet. It is the most cost-effective and practical way to meet your nitrogen needs without the worry of cylinder or bulk liquid nitrogen deliveries and the associated costs of renting cylinders and bulk liquid tanks from other companies. Are you ready to install your own nitrogen generator onsite for your industrial applications? Look no further.
Advanced Gas Technologies Inc. has been marketing, installing and maintaining industrial gas generating systems, standard industrial compressor systems, and engineered compressor systems throughout North America since 1994. Our primary mission has always been to assist our clients to substantially reduce their industrial nitrogen costs by utilizing leading-edge technologies such as on-site nitrogen and oxygen generating systems.
But why choose our systems? They can lower your ongoing nitrogen costs by as much as 90%, which means you can enjoy significant savings to your bottom line. If you need nitrogen or oxygen generators for your business and want to reduce your industrial gas costs, contact us toll-free at 1-(866) 725-7551 in North America or (905) 305-0094 locally or internationally.