Deliquescent Desiccants Drying Air & Gas

deliquescent desiccant restocking
With more than 65 years of experience developing desiccant formulas, Van Air Systems is the original and leading manufacturer of deliquescent desiccants for drying compressed air and gases. From a definition standpoint, a desiccant is a hygroscopic substance used as a drying agent. Many are commonly encountered in packaging to keep the contents dry and free from mold or mildew. However, for many industrial uses, deliquescent desiccants are a dependable, cost-effective, and energy-free tool for a wide range of industrial drying applications. Van Air Systems offers a variety of adsorbent desiccants, including activated alumina, silica gel, and molecular sieve. These desiccants are used in point-of-use applications, as well as in regenerative drying applications.

deliquescent desiccant restocking

Types of Desiccants Offered by Van Air

deliquescent desiccant
deliquescent desiccant

Overall, there are seven types of deliquescent desiccants offered here at Van Air Systems. Which desiccant used depends on the application and what is being dried. The different types are:

  • Dry-O-Lite - The industry-leading deliquescent desiccant and Van Air’s most popular desiccant dryer because of its combination of affordability and effectiveness.
  • SP - A deliquescent desiccant formulated primarily for the dehydration of natural gas for use in Van Air Systems Pipeline Dryers when the gas temperature is below 80°F.
  • 10BF - The most effective desiccant dryer offered by Van Air. It is more dense than other desiccants, and used primarily for the dehydration of natural gas for pipeline dryers.
  • 4UF - 4UF was developed to meet low dew point requirements when other desiccants cannot. It is used for air and gas dryers at low pressures, low flow rates, and/or low temperatures.
  • Activated Alumina - An aluminum oxide bead with an extremely porous structure and high surface area-to-mass ratio typically used as a pre-bed for supporting large desiccant beds.
  • Molecular Sieve - Similar to activated alumina, but has a fixed pore size according to the material specification, designed to deliver pressure dew point to -100°F, depending on conditions.
  • Silica Gel - A spherical bread consisting of 97% silica and 3% alumina with a highly porous surface and a strong affinity for adsorbing water -- also has the ability to change color when saturated.
Dryer Desiccants

Dry-O-Lite

Dry-O-Lite, the industry-leading deliquescent desiccant, is a chemical drying agent specifically formulated for Van Air Systems single tower compressed air dryers and natural gas pipeline dryers. Dry-O-Lite is a dense hygroscopic tablet that absorbs water vapor from streams of compressed air or gas. The surface of the desiccant tablet dissolves slowly, forming a brine solution which drops from the surface. The tablet continuously dissolves, or deliquesces, until the desiccant is fully consumed. In a properly sized D-series Compressed Air Dryer or Pipeline Dryer, Dry-O-Lite will establish a relative humidity of 55%, which equates to a dew point approximately 20°F lower…

Dry-O-Lite
Dryer Desiccants

Special Purpose “SP”

SP is a leading deliquescent desiccant formulated primarily for the dehydration of natural gas for use in Van Air Systems Pipeline Dryers when the gas temperature is below 80°F. SP is a dense hygroscopic tablet that absorbs water vapor. The surface of the desiccant tablet dissolves slowly, forming a brine solution which drops from the surface. The tablet continuously dissolves, or deliquesces, until the desiccant is fully consumed. Van Air Systems deliquescent desiccants, including SP, are non-toxic and fully water soluble. In a properly sized Pipeline Dryer, SP will establish a relative humidity of 33%, which equates to a dew…

Special Purpose “SP”
Dryer Desiccants

10BF

10BF is the most effective deliquescent desiccant from Van Air Systems. Formulated primarily for the dehydration of natural gas and for use in Van Air Systems Pipeline Dryers, 10BF is a dense hygroscopic tablet that absorbs water vapor. The surface of the desiccant tablet dissolves slowly, forming a brine solution which drops from the surface. The tablet continuously dissolve, or deliquesces, until the desiccant is fully consumed. Van Air Systems deliquescent desiccants, including 10BF, are non-toxic and fully water soluble. In a properly sized Pipeline Dryer, 10BF will establish a relative humidity of 13%, which equates to a dew point…

10BF
Dryer Desiccants

4UF

Natural gas or process gas dehydration at low pressures, low flow rates, and / or low temperatures can be very difficult. Most conventional salt-type absorbent desiccants are unable to adequately dry gas to low water content under these conditions. 4UF was developed to meet low dew point requirements when other desiccants or glycols cannot. 4UF can be used by itself or in combination with other grades of deliquescent desiccant, such as SP or 10BF Desiccant. In some applications, consumption is optimized when the process gas flows through the lower grade desiccant prior to the highly absorbent 4UF. *4UF is also…

4UF
Dryer Desiccants

Activated Alumina

Activated alumina is an aluminum oxide bead with an extremely porous structure and high surface area-to-mass ratio. Activated alumina has a wide variety of applications, including compressed air and gas drying. In compressed air and gas drying applications, activated alumina will achieve dew points -40°F to -100°F, depending on the dryer design. In compressed air desiccant dryers, a 1/8″ (2-5 mm) activated alumina bead is most commonly used. The 1/4″ (5-10 mm) activated alumina bead is typically used as a pre-bed for supporting large desiccant beds or as a buffer for silica gel beds. The 3/16″ (5-10 mm) bead is…

Activated Alumina
Dryer Desiccants

Molecular Sieve

Molecular sieve is highly porous sodium aluminosilicate bead for the adsorption of a wide range of liquids and gases. It has a fixed pore size according to the material specification. Van Air Systems offers molecular sieve with a 4 angstrom pore size. Because of its high comparative cost, molecular sieve is normally used for special process applications. In compressed air and gas drying applications, molecular sieve will deliver pressure dew point to -100°F, depending on dryer design and operating conditions.

Molecular Sieve
Dryer Desiccants

Silica Gel

Silica gel is a spherical bread consisting of 97% silica and 3% alumina with a highly porous surface and a strong affinity for adsorbing water. Silica gel is also applied as a selective adsorbent for a wide-range of hydrocarbons, C02, siloxanes, sulfur, and many other compounds. Because silica gel fractures in the presence of liquid water, it is often protected with a pre-bed of activated alumina. In air and gas drying applications, dew points of -40°F and lower can be achieved with silica gel.

Silica Gel

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