Compressed gas producers often make significant effort to
fulfill their customer’s specific needs when it comes to accuracy, purity, and
various other specifications. The majority of these gases are shipped in
traditional high-pressure cylinders, and others are shipped in bulk, smaller
containers, or dewars. Regardless of the delivery method, these gases will
eventually face handling, distribution, and regulation by the consumer.
Throughout this, the gases face several different types of equipment and
methods of handling that will either reduce or maintain its purity.
Gas handling systems can range from being extremely complex
to quite simplistic. But regardless of its configuration, the gas delivery
system can have a significant effect on the purity of the gas and is a
component that should never be underestimated. Likewise, the employment of
certain dangerous gases can present safety hazards if they are not utilized with
the proper equipment.
The purpose of gas regulators in gas delivery systems is to
decrease the pressure from a high-pressure origin to a pressure level that is
suitable for use. The proper regulator is capable of maintaining purity of the
gas while simultaneously delivering it safely. Because of its importance, there
are several different matters to take into consideration when choosing the best
regulator for an application.
The first element to take into consideration when selecting
a regulator is the level of purity that is needed for the application. There
are three categories under which these requirements usually fall: general
purpose, high-purity, and ultra-high purity.
As an example, if an application calls for high-purity gas,
then a high-purity regulator should be used rather than a general-purpose or
other insufficient regulator. At the very least, regulators that are utilized
in delivery systems should be cleaned by the supplier to assure both
cleanliness and safe employment.
Another matter that needs to be taken into consideration
when choosing the proper regulator is the regulator’s body type. The bodies of
regulators can be either produced from barstock or forged. Forging is utilized
with only brass; barstock, on the other hand is employed for stainless steel,
brass, and additional materials. There are several reasons for which barstock
bodies are favored for high-purity applications. One reason is its small
internal volume which makes it easier to purge, thus enabling impurities and
moisture to be removed. Additionally, barstock has a smoother internal surface
which reduces the amount of contaminants that are retained inside. Lastly, the
grain structure of the metal is tighter in barstock, meaning it is less likely
to absorb moisture and impurities.
In regards to materials of construction, brass is the
material used most often in pressure regulators. In certain higher-purity
applications or in situations where brass is incompatible with the gas being
used, other materials such as stainless steel are used. Gases with corrosive
properties might need corrosion-resistant materials for all wetted parts, but
flammables and inert gases are typically compatible with brass and most other
materials. 316 stainless steel is most commonly utilized in applications that
call for corrosion-resistant materials.
Forged brass bodies are most commonly utilized with the
lowest-purity gas, and in the lowest-cost regulators. Brass barstock bodies, on
the other hand, have smoother internal finishes and smaller internal volumes
allowing them to maintain noncorrosive gases with higher purity levels. For
semi-corrosive or corrosive gases or gas mixtures and higher-purity requirements,
stainless steel should be employed. For gases that are highly corrosive, Monel
or Hastelloy should be the materials that are used as they enable more
PurityPlus offers a large selection of gas regulators
and other specialty gas equipment
to ensure that our customers accomplish all of their specialty gas
applications using the safest, most efficient, and most reliable tools. To learn more about PurityPlus' specialty gas equipment and other specialty gas products offered by PurityPlus, browse our catalog
or contact us via our website
or at 877-81P-PLUS (877-817-7587).