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Thread: Using a centrifuge on breathing air

  1. #1 Using a centrifuge on breathing air 
    Time Lord
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    If you put ordinary air into a centrifuge, and start it going, will the centrifuge be able to separate the air into its components? Will O2 settle to a different area than CO2 and N?


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  3. #2  
    Forum Isotope Bunbury's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    If you put ordinary air into a centrifuge, and start it going, will the centrifuge be able to separate the air into its components? Will O2 settle to a different area than CO2 and N?
    Gas centrifuge separation has been tried for separating CO2 and H2S from natural gas, and it works and in fact might even be more energy efficient that traditional solvent methods. The differences between this application and separating CO2 from air are first the initial concentration of CO2 is far lower than in typical natural gas streams, and second the molecular weight difference between CO2 and oxygen and nitrogen is much less than the difference between CO2 and methane. So I doubt if such a technique would be useful.


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  4. #3  
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    Usual practice is to liquefy air at low temperature and apply fractional distillation technology. Like petroleum refining, sorta.
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  5. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Finger Prince View Post
    Usual practice is to liquefy air at low temperature and apply fractional distillation technology. Like petroleum refining, sorta.
    The CO2 is removed in a mole sieve before the air is liquefied. If it wasn't removed the CO2 would freeze and plug up the works.
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  6. #5  
    Geo
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    Be aware that pure oxygen above two atmospheres is toxic. Pressure is important.
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