- A compressor is a type of mechanical device that compresses air volume. Industrially, compressors are used to operate various machines, tools and hydraulic devices. Compressors can be divided into three major types: rotary screw compressors, centrifugal compressors and reciprocating compressors. Each type varies in how it compresses the air, though the end result is typically the same. Discover some of the commercial uses for compressors to see how these mechanical devices affect your daily life.
Commercial Air Conditioning Systems
- An industrial air compressor can force air through coolant and heating systems on a large scale. This makes the device ideal for massive air conditioning systems through which air must be moved over long distances. The compressor is typically located in a basement or side building and is connected to the air conditioning system using a series of ducts or pipes.
- Car washes at your local gas station often use air compressors. Compressors use air to force powerful jets of water and cleaning solution onto vehicles. Compressors also hydraulically spin the rotating cleaning devices in the car wash.
- Industrial refrigerators, such as those used in factories and grocery stores, depend on air compressors to run their coolant and ventilation systems. The compressors push air through the coolant systems, and also assist in moving the actual coolant solution through the refrigerators' pipes.
Handheld Mechanical Tools
- Common manufacturing and maintenance tools must be connected to compressors to function. These include paint spraying tools and welders at your local auto-body shop, and nail guns, air hammers and sandblasters at local construction sites. The air compressor uses a jet of pressurized air to propel the needed gas or physical objects. Additional tools that may require a large air compressor include some types of drills, pneumatic tapping machines and industrial polishers.
- Large-scale industrial manufacturing may require air compressors to power some types of pneumatic manufacturing tools. This is common in automated factories used for assembling objects such as car parts or even clothing.
- Industrial compressors are critical for providing moderately pressurized air to submerged humans. This may apply to scuba training schools, recreational divers and short-term underwater habitats. Compressors are also essential for the operation of some types of submarines, which use the device to increase or decrease air volume to assist in raising or lowering the buoyancy of the vessel.