Mazak Laser Requires Nitrogen Generator
From precision laser CNCs to automated robotic welding, nitrogen gas has a multitude of manufacturing applications, especially in our shop. With the introduction of our new Mazak Optiplex Nexus Fiber Laser, finding a suitable source of nitrogen gas found to be challenging for us. At times it was not good for the environment.
The Nitrogen Supply Problem
Nitrogen supply methods typically include transporting high-pressure cylinders on large cargo trucks; however, this method presents a range of greenhouse gas emissions, which add more symptoms to the world’s current environmental issues.
Relying on a company to deliver and pick up nitrogen cylinders leads to putting a lot of trucks on the road. These trucks emit greenhouse gases into the air that lead to long-term negative environmental effects. By producing nitrogen on site, there are no cylinders to dispose of and no more trucks. Yes, cylinders can be reprocessed, but after a few cycles they are no longer effective and must be disposed of.
Nitrogen Waste Hurts Bottom Line
Nitrogen delivery also hurts the bottom line of us and you, our client. An Emergency Action Report from Air Products notes that most leaks happen from welded seams or valves of cylinders. This can waste up to 10 percent of the product before we are able to use it to craft your products. By switching to an on-site nitrogen generator, we can keep all of your nitrogen supply intact and forget about waste.
The Green Freight Handbook Calculation
Let’s take this simple calculation into consideration: The closest nitrogen gas supplier is a 30–mile round trip from our facilities at Metalcraft. Making this trip at least twice a week if not everyday means our nitrogen supply would commute 2,880 to 7,200 miles per year. Because these cylinders are placed on a fully loaded flatbed, the Green Freight handbook determines that there is an emission factor of 1,700 grams of CO2 per mile, for the mode of transportation. This equates to more than five to 12 metric tons of CO2 per year that’s leaking into the air just because of a long, frequent delivery route. To put this it into different terms, it would be the same as roughly 1,320 to 3,170 gallons of gas burning up every time a refueling truck traveled to replenished a gas station.
Producing our own nitrogen in-house means all that lost CO2will not contaminate the atmosphere any longer.
If Metalcraft’s shop floor can be LEAN, so can our nitrogen gas supply. By paying more upfront for high purity nitrogen gas, related regulators, and other essentials leads to lesser costs and faster lead times in the end. Metalcraft is always striving for continuous improvement. We want to be environmentally friendly while doing so.