Compressed air as a resource

Published 27 February 2024

Compressed air is a valuable resource in any industrial plant. It is critical for the proper operation of the plants and in some cases can be linked to either the success or failure of specific equipment in the plant. This is 100 per cent true for air cannons. An air cannon’s reliability as well as cleaning capability is based upon a good air supply that can deliver sufficient energy for a sufficient duration to dislodge build-ups. Dracyon Corp explains the factors that impact on air cannon performance and how to avoid high air usage. By Dracyon Corp, USA.

Air cannons are simple devices. Protect the air cannon from

the environment and you will get years of

trouble-free service (© Dracyon Corp)

An air cannon is a simple device that stores air in an air tank before allowing it to quickly escape into a nozzle via a proportionally large valve. The quicker the valve opens, the less restriction (pressure drop) there is in the air cannon. The less pressure drop (ie the higher the pressure), the greater the peak force.

The air cannon’s blast is shaped by the nozzle, which can also be used to convert energy from one form to another, without loss of energy (cf Newton’s Law of Energy Conservation). Therefore, a high-velocity nozzle converts pressure into a higher velocity. This velocity increase is designed to improve the impact of the air blast on build-up, moving the material from an unwanted location. Success in moving the material is determined by the power of the blast and its duration.

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