Have you ever wondered why a balloon flies away so quickly after you stop blowing in it? Do you know how certain tools and vehicles are powered? Compressed air is a common way of storing kinetic energy, and it is used more than you may think. Here’s a guide to compressed air, how it is used and why it’s important.
What Is Compressed Air?
Compressed air is simply the air you breathe forced into a smaller space. The air is a combination of nitrogen, oxygen, water vapor and small amounts of carbon dioxide and other gases. When these molecules are forced into a smaller container, the molecules are closer together and move faster. This increases the pressure, which can eventually be released to create kinetic energy.
The pressure increases because the molecules don’t like being so close together. Boyle’s law explains this with an equation, and the First Law of Thermodynamics explains that both the pressure and temperature will rise. So if the temperature rises, a compressed air system Jacksonville FL needs aftercoolers to lower the temperature.
Why Is Compressed Air Important?
This scientific method of creating kinetic energy is a safe alternative to the use of electricity. Some equipment is best powered by compressed air to avoid electrical shocks or malfunctions. And when these tools and equipment are around water or in humid environments, it is a lot safer to use compressed air rather than electricity.
Along with being safer, compressed air can be controlled. With the right amount of pressure, air tools can be customized to the needs of the workers. More speed, less torque. You make the call.
And because air is being used, these tools can be lightweight. This makes it easier for workers to use and move. Air tools can be made with lighter materials too to reduce the weight even more.
What Is Compressed Air Used For?
Compressed air can be used in the aerospace, manufacturing and food processing industries. It is widely used in machinery. Things that are mass produced or require heavy mechanical work often use compressed air as an energy source.
Next time you pop a tire, blow a balloon or use an air blow gun, you’ll know the science behind it. This incredible type of energy is even considered to be the fourth utility that we use besides water, gas and electricity. In fact, almost all the products you own used compressed air sometime during the manufacturing process. Compressed air is cool!