March 30, 2023
Rotary Screw Air Compressor

Cross section of the air compressor. Rotor of air screw compressor. Close-up photo. Shallow depth of field.

Thanks to their efficiency, versatility, and durability, rotary screw air compressors have gained a lot of fame in many industries. Compared to most compressors, such as piston compressors, they are generally more efficient and reliable. However, to understand their mechanism and usefulness, you need to understand what they are and how they work. In this post, learn how a rotary screw compressor functions and some benefits of using one.

What Is a Rotary Screw Air Compressor?

A rotary screw air compressor is an air compressor that utilizes one or two screw mechanisms to compress air. They are usually cleaner, quieter, and more efficient than most compressor types. Plus, they are reliable, even when used constantly. These benefits, along with other perks, make screw compressors the preferred option for professional and industrial applications around the world.  

How Do They Work?

The air compressor is usually made with two helical screws, also known as rotors.  Some air compressors have just one rotor, but single-rotor compressors aren’t as popular in the industrial realm as double rotors. 

Double rotors are more effective, and their working principle is as brilliant as it is straightforward. The equipment’s interlocking helical rotors are situated in a housing. Generally, there are two rotors, a male and female rotor, each with a unique shape and number of grooves. In most arrangements, one rotor will have four grooves and the other six grooves.

Using an intake valve, the compressor’s housing (the space between the helical rotors) is filled with air. As the rotors start turning, the volume of the air minimizes as it compresses. This increases the pressure of the air, which gives power to tools.

This is the simplest explanation of how a rotary screw compressor works. You may find some with additional differences depending on your needs.

What Are Their Benefits and Drawbacks?

Air compressors have a wide range of benefits that make them perfect for mobile and standalone applications. That is why you will find them installed on vehicles and trailers — in addition to industrial, production, and medical industries, where top-notch equipment is necessary. Here are some of the reasons people prefer this air compressor to other types:

  • Constant airflow
  • Higher quantities of air
  • Higher CFM per hp
  • Durability
  • Better warranties
  • Quiet
  • Energy efficient

Because this air compressor runs constantly, you don’t have to wait for the air receiver tank to fill it again before using the air. You don’t have to stall your operations while waiting for air. This perk, its longevity, and easy access to instant air are the most popular benefits of a rotary screw compressor. 

However, despite their advantages and popularity, they are not the ideal option for everyone. And like any other piece of equipment, air compressors also have drawbacks. Here are some of its disadvantages:

  • Upfront cost
  • Skilled maintenance required

The primary reason people choose another compressor type instead of a screw air compressor is its initial cost. This air compressor generally costs double the price of a reciprocating air compressor, but it’s worth the price due to its features. They might cost twice as much, but they last longer and produce constant air.

Key Takeaway

If you’re looking for reliable, constant pressurized air for your applications, consider a rotary screw air compressor. They tend to be quieter and more efficient than most of their counterparts. As an extra perk, they have longer lifespans, and their maintenance is very simple when performed by a qualified technician. A rotary screw compressor is a great long-term investment. You should expect fast, reliable, and high-quality results, no matter how big or small your operations are.

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