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Gas Plants Information > Air Separation Processes

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Air Separation Processes

High purity industrial gases such as O2, N2, H2 and CO are produced in a variety of ways. Air is a raw material from which its constituent gases are extracted in pure form. The air is then compresses and liquified. Liquification occurs at extremely low temperatures. The air is cooled to about -300°F (-185°C) and then, relying on different boiling points, separated into its elemental components in the form of liquid oxygen, argon and nitrogen.

Air Separation Process can be of two types:
  • Cryogenic System - Produce gas (and liquid) products using very low temperature distillation to separate air components and achieve desired product purities.

  • Non-Cryogenic System - Produce gaseous products with near-ambient temperature separation processes that utilize differences in properties such as molecular structure, size and mass to generate oxygen or nitrogen.
Non-Cryogenic Process is further divided into the following:
  • Pressure Swing Adsorption

  • Vacuum Swing Adsorption

  • Membrane Separation

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