Previously, we reviewed the Marine air compressor, providing a brief explanation of what it is, its uses, and potential problems associated with such compressors. In addition to ordinary air compressors, high-pressure compressors are designed to ensure safety on board vessels.
High-pressure compressors on vessels are essential pieces of equipment used to generate and store compressed air at significantly elevated pressures. These compressors are typically designed to handle higher pressure levels than standard compressors and serve various critical functions on ships. Here are some common applications for high-pressure compressors on vessels:
Air Start Systems: Many larger vessels, particularly those with large diesel engines, use high-pressure compressed air to start the engines. High-pressure air start systems provide the necessary force to turn the engine's crankshaft.
Pneumatic Tools: High-pressure air is used to operate pneumatic tools and equipment for maintenance and repair work on the ship. These tools require compressed air at higher pressures to operate effectively.
Inert Gas Systems: High-pressure compressors are used in inert gas systems on certain types of ships, such as oil tankers. These systems maintain a blanket of inert gas (typically nitrogen) over flammable cargo to prevent fires and explosions.
Hydrostatic Testing: High-pressure compressors are used for hydrostatic testing of various equipment and systems on board, including pressure vessels, pipelines, and firefighting equipment.
Scuba and Diving Operations: In some cases, high-pressure compressors are used to fill high-pressure cylinders for scuba diving and underwater work, which require air at elevated pressures.
Breathing Air Systems: Vessels with enclosed spaces or hazardous cargo may require high-pressure breathing air systems to provide clean, high-pressure air for crew members and divers to use with breathing apparatus.
High-Pressure Gas Storage: High-pressure compressors are used to fill and maintain high-pressure gas storage cylinders on board, which can be used for various purposes, including emergency gas supplies.
Firefighting Systems: Certain firefighting systems on vessels may use high-pressure compressed air to operate, such as fixed fire suppression systems and firefighting foam equipment.
Since the high-pressure compressor is an important safety equipment and requires special attention in terms of maintenance time. They need to be maintained and operated in accordance with safety regulations to ensure the safety of the vessel and its crew. The following are examples of serviceable components:
- Oil replacement for oil every 500 hours or every 6 months.
- AC/MS Cartridge replacement every 20 hours or every 15 hours according the model of compressor 20 degrees ambient temperature or every 6 months.
- Coalescing pre-filter cartridge replacement every 200 hours or once a year.
- Air intake cartridge replacement every 200 hours or once a year.
High-pressure compressors on vessels are designed to withstand the harsh marine environment and the demands of continuous operation. Crew members responsible for their operation and maintenance often require specialized training.