Nitrogen Gas Purity

Selecting Nitrogen Gas Purity

Generating your own endless supply of nitrogen gas can result in many financial, safety and eco-friendly benefits.  A key contributor to the financial benefit, is the ability to produce nitrogen gas at the purity the application requires.  When ordering nitrogen from a gas supplier, the product is delivered at an incredibly high purity; 99.999+%.  Not all applications demand such a premium purity, which ultimately results in the end user overpaying for their supply.  Generating nitrogen gas at the purity the application truly requires can result in substantial financial benefit for the end user.  Below are examples of typical nitrogen purity requirements, which are separated by industry, or application.  The purity ranges below are based on statistical data collected from over 50,000 nitrogen generators installed worldwide.  

Food & Beverage

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 98% – 99.5%

Food and beverage production relies heavily on nitrogen gas to keep product fresh and reduce spoilage. Many operations will use nitrogen gas in both product storage and packaging processes, including modified atmospheric packaging (MAP).  Nitrogen gas is widely used for storing and packaging coffee, edible oils, beverage, fruit, vegetables, dairy, snack foods, wine production and many other products.

Laser & Plasma Cutting

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 97% – 99.999%

Nitrogen gas is widely used in the laser and plasma cutting industries, most often as an assist gas, or pierce gas.  Using nitrogen as an assist gas in laser cutting applications will eliminate the risk of oxidation, resulting in a premium cut and finish.  A higher purity level is typically required for materials such as stainless steel, aluminum and its alloys.  Nitrogen is also used as a laser bellow purge gas.  In plasma cutting applications, nitrogen is widely used as a pierce gas, prior to assisting the torch with air or Oxygen. 

Chemical Blanketing

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 95% – 99%

Chemical tanks containing flammable material are often blanketed with nitrogen gas.  Chemical processing and storage facilities will fill the tank head space with nitrogen gas to remove the risk of combustion, resulting in a fire or explosion.  Nitrogen is widely used in many fire prevention applications.       

Electronics Assembly

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 95% – 99.999%

Electronics assembly requires nitrogen gas for many soldering, storage and cleaning applications.  The nitrogen purity required will vary greatly, depending on how the nitrogen is being applied.  Purity can be as high as 99.999% for certain soldering processes and as low as 95% for cleaning electronic components and storage.

Heat Treating

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 95% – 99%

Nitrogen is used in heat treating applications to remove oxygen from the furnace.  Using nitrogen to create an inert environment will eliminate oxidation and a poorly finished product.  Understanding the allowable oxygen content for each furnace and material being processed is important when determining the appropriate purity.

Plastics

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 95% – 99.5%

The plastics industry depends on nitrogen for gas assist injection molding and blown film extrusion.  Nitrogen is used in gas assist injection molding to prevent carburization of the screw and to purge the pellet hopper.  Due to relatively low purity requirements, nitrogen gas generation systems typically provide a rapid return on investment in the plastics industry.

Pharmaceutical

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 97% – 99.99%

The pharmaceutical industry relies on an inert environment and nitrogen gas for product transfer, storage, sparging, packaging and laboratory purposes.

Power Generation

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 95% – 98%

Powerhouses and boiler rooms will use nitrogen gas to purge gas seals and lines.  Pressurizing boilers during down time or maintenance intervals is a great way to minimize boiler corrosion and maximize service life.

Oil, Gas & Petrochemical

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 95% – 99%

Nitrogen gas serves as an important safety measure against fire and explosion.  The oil, gas and petrochemical industries rely on nitrogen gas to blanket tanks, purge lines, cushion seals, pressurize riser tensioners and inertly transfer oil.  Nitrogen generators are often utilized in off shore oil drilling and mining applications, where large and frequent deliveries of nitrogen are near impossible.

Tire Inflation

Nitrogen Purity Requirement 95% – 98%

Pressurizing your tires with nitrogen gas will result in a more consistent tire pressure as time passes and the temperature changes. 

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