For industries using nitrogen gas there are two main gas supply methods. Bulk supply, in the form of cylinders, dewars or tanks, or generator supply, where a gas generator is used to generate gas on demand.
As nitrogen supplied by a gas generator is the newer of the two supply methods, bulk supply has been the method of choice for many. However, as gas generators have become more popular, industries are recognizing the benefit of a gas generator and evaluating which method is best suited to their needs. When evaluating both gas supply methods it is important to consider the costs of bulk supply which are not immediately obvious. These hidden costs can result in much higher bills than expected if not taken into account.
In addition to gas costs, container rental costs and delivery costs, companies should also account for the additional costs below when considering bulk gas supply:
The sudden release of gas from a cylinder, dewar or tank can result in asphyxiation or explosion. This risk is particularly relevant to gas cylinders which are often stored inside a facility, close to personnel and equipment. Less serious risks can include back, hand or foot injuries resulting from moving and changing cylinders. At the very least, companies must invest in health and safety training for staff who will be responsible for handling gas cylinders. If a member of staff is injured this could result in health-care bills, reduced productivity and higher insurance premiums, not to mention the possible legal costs of an injury at work claim. A dropped gas cylinder could also damage expensive equipment and, if a cylinder, dewar or tank were to be damaged and explode, the costs, both human and financial, don't bear thinking about.
No matter which bulk supply method is chosen - cylinders, dewars or tanks - there will be resulting labor costs. Dewar and tank deliveries require manpower and downtime as someone is required to schedule and receive the deliveries and deal with their associated administration. The same can also be said of gas tank refills although these will be less frequently required than cylinder or dewar deliveries. A late delivery could also result in work grinding to a halt which could prove costly. Cylinders also require regular inspection, taking time away from other operations.
Gas tanks and dewars are usually required to be installed outside and often need concrete pads and locked fences. Cylinders, particularly when delivered in bundles or cradles, can also incur infrastructure costs as they require well-ventilated weather-proof storage space away from combustible material.
Once these labor, safety and infrastructure costs have been taken into account, it’s necessary to consider the frequent rises in gas prices. Gas price rises are difficult to budget for due to their unpredictable nature but it would be prudent for a company opting for bulk gas supply to plan for year on year price increases.
The good news for companies seeking an industrial gas supply is that they can limit their costs by choosing a gas generator, such as the i-Flow PSA Nitrogen generator. The i-Flow generates gas on demand, storing a minimal amount, and eliminating the risk of explosion or asphyxiation that is present with bulk supply. With an on-site gas generator there is also no need for repeated deliveries, changeovers, refills or the associated administration, resulting in less downtime and safety risks. Gas generators are also easy to budget for. The costs to be expected are simply up-front purchase and installation costs and a yearly maintenance plan.
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Majority of industries buy nitrogen gas supplies via nitrogen cylinder packs, others meet their needs through liquid nitrogen dewars, micro-bulk tanks or bulk liquid nitrogen delivery. There is a better, more sustainable & safer option. Reduce the cost of nitrogen gas to your organisation & become self-sufficient. Find out how much you can save with a Peak industrial nitrogen generator system.