Working Principle Of Sliding Vane Air Compressor

In this article, I will share with you the working principle of a sliding vane (sliding blade/rotary vane) air compressor.


The first thing you have to know about a sliding vane air compressor is that it’s a rotary type of compressor.


This type of compressor has rotors in the place of a piston, which is very different from reciprocating compressors.


To understand the working principle of this compressor you have to know the main component of the sliding vane compressor.


Without knowing the parts you won’t understand how it works.


So, without wasting time, let me share with you the parts of the compressor.


Main components of sliding vane air compressor;

Intake filter – This is the filter that filters the air entering the compressor. The air coming from the atmosphere is usually dirty as it may contain dust particles.


These dust particles have to be removed before the air engages with the rotor.


Oil sump – The oil sump is the source that provides oil to the compressor. There are several uses of oil in the compressor, which include, the oil will prevent the escape of air during compression since air has a low viscosity.


The oil provides a seal at the end of the blades to prevent that from happening.


The other use of the oil that is injected into the rotor is to provide lubrication for the rotor to run smoothly since air has no lubricating properties.


If you never knew, during compression, there is a rise in temperature in the compressor, and the only way to control the temperature rise is by using the oil that will be circulating through the unit.


Oil injector – The oil injector is that tube that injects oil into the rotor, you can also say that it’s the “oil feeder” to the rotor.


Oil pressure relief – The main function of the oil pressure relief is to prevent hydraulic locking of the rotor.


Delivery filter – The delivery filter is essential in the sliding vane compressor as it does the work of filtering the air leaving the compressor.


You have to understand that air compressed will contain some mist of oil since the temperature will rise during compression.


So, it’s necessary to remove these oil suspensions in the air before delivering them to the supply line.


Working principle of sliding vane air compressor.


To make it easier for you to understand, I will share the working principles in steps.

Step 1; When the motor that drives the rotor is switched on the rotor will start to rotate anticlockwise, the rotation causes the blades of the rotor to create a centrifugal force. This force will draw in air through the intake filter since a suction will be created inside the compressor casing.


Step 2; The suction created by the centrifugal force compresses the air and passes it outward in the pressure chamber. This is the place where the air comes into contact with the oil in the oil sump.


Since the air entering the compressor will be under high velocity, it will pressurize the oil in the oil sump thus making it flow through the external oil pipe to the injector.


The oil is then sprayed on the rotor and its blade and the air that is being compressed.


This lubricates the moving parts of the compressor and forms a seal that prevents the air from escaping as it’s being compressed.


Step 3; The compressed air which contains oil suspensions will pass through the delivery filter. This filter will clean this air removing most of the suspended oil in the air.


The filtered oil will be taken back to the oil sump for recirculation.


If the excess oil penetrates the compression cell the pressure relief valve will work to prevent the hydraulic locking of the rotor.


Excess oil on the compression cell can greatly affect the working of the compressor.


It ensures economic measures are taken into consideration as there is a reuse of the oil that is supposed to escape with the air.


Also, instead of the compressor having a pump pressurizing the oil to flow to the injector, it uses the same air entering the compressor.


Thanks for reading, if you have any questions don’t be afraid to leave your comment. See you in my next article.


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