The Rising Need for On-site Nitrogen Generation in The Aerospace Industry
A critical challenge faced by aerospace industry leaders is ensuring aircraft/machinery safety. Nitrogen gas has become a virtually indispensable resource due to its chemical inertness that significantly boosts the safety of aerospace applications it is integrated into. This article will highlight the benefits associated with the use of on-site nitrogen generation in the aerospace industry.
The Importance of Nitrogen Gas to The Aerospace Industry
As mentioned earlier, equipment safety is a major concern in the aerospace industry. Nitrogen gas is an inert gas that retards spontaneous combustion by displacing oxygen. This fire-retardant property makes it safe for use in various aerospace and aviation applications.
What Role Does Nitrogen Play in Aerospace Applications?
Gaseous nitrogen has been proven to be very beneficial in optimizing aerospace safety. Outlined below are some key applications of nitrogen in aviation.
Aircraft Tire Inflation
Why are airplane tires filled with nitrogen? Nitrogen gas has physical and chemical properties that make it more suitable for tire inflation than regular compressed air. Airplane tires filled with nitrogen handle better, leak less frequently and pose a significantly lower fire hazard due to their inert nature.
Aircraft Fuel Tank Inerting
Planes often have to carry large volumes of fuel that pose a significant risk of combustion. In addition to nitrogen for aircraft tire gas, fuel tank inerting is used to make the aircraft fuel tank stable. Nitrogen gas is typically introduced into the tank environment to minimize the chances of spontaneous combustion.
Oleo Strut Shock Absorbers
One of the most critical points in an aircraft flight is the landing phase. Oleo strut shock absorbers play a crucial role in safely absorbing and redistributing landing loads. Nitrogen is the choice gas for compressor fluid within these vital hydraulic systems as it optimizes their damping effect.
Escape Slide Inflation Systems
Escape slides/life rafts used in emergency plane evacuations are best inflated using nitrogen gas because it is stable and non-explosive. A standard nitrogen inflation system consists of a pressurized gas cylinder regulated by valves that can rapidly inflate a raft permitting complete evacuation of a plane in under two minutes.
Airplane component manufacturing requires precise processes leaving no room for error. Airframe and engine parts are created using aircraft nitrogen service tools such as cutting lasers and welding machines. Nitrogen gas can be employed in both processes to achieve high-quality finishes.
The high-quality composite materials critical to aerospace/aviation applications, for example, the construction of fuselages and airplane wings, all undergo autoclaving processes. The high temperatures and pressures needed to perform industrial-scale autoclaving present a significant combustion hazard that must be mitigated at all phases of component production. Autoclave inerting with nitrogen gas generates a stable environment for an otherwise hazardous activity to run without adverse incidents.
Benefits of Onboard Inert Gas Generation Systems
Nitrogen gas has become virtually indispensable in the aviation industry due to its integration in aircraft manufacturing, operation, and turnaround activities. Below are some key benefits associated with using onboard nitrogen generation systems for aircraft.
Onboard nitrogen gas generators will produce high-purity gas that meets global aviation standards. In addition, an onboard nitrogen generation unit will consistently deliver the required volumes of the gas on demand.
Onboard nitrogen generation systems are built to withstand high temperatures and pressures. This is vital as the aircraft they service will often be operated under harsh environmental conditions.
Onboard nitrogen generators are a cost-saving decision that eliminates costs accruing from gas cylinder rental, storage, refilling, and transport.
The Flexibility of Gas Generation
An onboard nitrogen system will permit the synthesis of required gas volumes according to demand. This means gas synthesis can be scaled up or down at any point.
Onboard nitrogen generation eliminates the possibility of supply chain delays common with vendor-supplied gas. However, cylinder-supplied nitrogen will need to undergo stringent airport security checks. This will translate to lost manpower hours and reduced efficiency of various aviation applications dependent on a stable gas supply.
Discover NiGen’s Range of On-site Nitrogen Systems
At NiGen, we prioritize customer safety and satisfaction. We offer state-of-the-art on-site nitrogen generation solutions suitable for a host of industrial and commercial applications. So whether you need nitrogen for aircraft tires or other industrial operations, NiGen has you covered.
Contact us today to find out more about our range of products and services.