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PSA and Membrane Separation Technology Upacked

Ambient air is comprised of 21 % Oxygen, 78% Nitrogen, 0.9 % Argon and 0.1 % rare gases.
Pressure Swing Absorption uses ambient air as raw material to separate air and gas.

In the PSA generation process the gases are:

  • Separated under the alternating pressurization of two tanks filled with molecular sieve. Zeolite for Oxygen generation and activated carbon for Nitrogen generation.
  • When the tank is pressurized by the compressed air, the Nitrogen or the Oxygen is gradually retained by the molecular sieve, then releases the produced gas directly at the output point. At high pressure, the molecular sieve adsorbs Oxygen (or Nitrogen) carbon dioxide and vapor from the air to water, and allows Nitrogen (or Oxygen) to be produced.
  • When the molecular sieve is almost full, the process continues to the second tank and the unwanted gas adsorbed in the first receiver is released into the atmosphere. While a tank is adsorbing, the other tank regenerates using pressure reduction.
  • The cycle is then repeated under electronic control to continuously produce a high purity and stable flow

Membrane Separation

The air separation process of membrane generators is based on the principle of selective permeation. Membrane separation is better suited to high volume lower purity requirements.Each gas constituent has a characteristic permeation rate that is a function of its ability to dissolve and diffuse through a membrane. The module in which the nitrogen and oxygen separation takes place is a cylindrical bundle of hollow fiber membranes. Each bundle contains several million fibers, each about the size of a human hair.

In the generation process using membrane separation:

  • Pressurized air enters one end of the fibers and flows to the opposite end on the module through the fiber bores. Gas separation takes place as the pressurized air contacts the membranes.
  • “Fast” gases such as oxygen, carbon dioxide, and water vapor quickly permeate through the fiber walls and exit as an enriched gas at the vent port on the side of the module case.
  • Nitrogen, a slower gas, does not permeate through the fiber as quickly under flowing conditions. It flows down the bore of the fibers and exits at the product manifold at the end of the high-pressure shell

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