March 03, 2008 Lehigh Valley, Pa.
An innovative gas supply system, capable of providing continuous supplies of gases suitable for high pressure applications, is helping to make quality laser cutting technology more viable, says Air Products.
Air Products has recently invested in the extension of its microbulk gas supply service, called the CryoEase® service, which provides liquid gases – nitrogen, oxygen, argon and carbon dioxide - in volumes of between 180 – 2000 litres. One of the main areas of investment has been in the provision of vehicles equipped to re-fill onsite tanks with liquid nitrogen stored at a pressure suitable for laser cutting applications – usually around 30 bar. Supplying the gas at high pressure means there is no need to vent down onsite tanks, prior to re-filling.
Improving the supply system for liquid gas has particular benefits for the laser cutting industry, as Aaron Williams, commercial technology manager, Air Products, explains:
“Liquid gas is ideally suited to laser cutting applications, where continuous supply is important. Especially when cutting with nitrogen, a consistent high pressure supply is often imperative to maintain high productivity rates.
“In the past we often had to arrange a time to re-fill onsite liquid gas tanks at night or over the weekend in order to minimise operational disruption. Using the new tankers, we can carry the liquid gas at the required pressure so it can be transferred directly into the tank at any time of day, without causing any interruptions to the laser cutting application.
“Using liquid gas, as oppose to traditional gas cylinder packs, also means that even small and medium-sized laser cutting shops and other metal fabricators can be assured of a high pressure gas supply on demand.”
According to Air Products, demand for laser technologies in the UK’s metal fabrication industry is growing and this is driven mainly by the need to optimise quality, repeatability and improve efficiency. However, some laser users are unsure about whether they should switch to microbulk gas supplies. Aaron Williams adds:
“The CryoEase service has effectively made the benefits of liquid gas supply a more viable choice for a wider range of operators.
“In most cases, if operators are using more than 10 cylinders of high-purity gas per month, they should consider switching to microbulk. While not used for laser cutting applications, mixed gases may require two onsite tanks and possibly a mixer or blending system too, so the decision to switch would normally be taken only if larger volumes of gas are used – usually around 20 cylinders per month.”
The CryoEase® service is available throughout the UK, providing supplies of high-purity nitrogen, oxygen, argon and carbon dioxide, suitable for a wide range of welding and cutting applications. It is quick and easy to install and the range of tank sizes means it can be designed to fit the available onsite space. Using the CryoEase® service, operators benefit from having their supply managed for them remotely, so there is no need to re-order.
For more information about the CryoEase® service contact Air Products by phoning 0800 389 0202 or visit www.airproducts.com/cryoease.
Note to Editor:
Air Products (NYSE:APD) serves customers in industrial, energy, technology and healthcare markets worldwide with a unique portfolio of atmospheric gases, process and specialty gases, performance materials, and equipment and services. Founded in 1940, Air Products has built leading positions in key growth markets such as semiconductor materials, refinery hydrogen, home healthcare services, natural gas liquefaction, and advanced coatings and adhesives. The company is recognized for its innovative culture, operational excellence and commitment to safety and the environment. Air Products has annual revenues of $10 billion, operations in over 40 countries, and 22,000 employees around the globe. For more information, visit www.airproducts.com.
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