A centrifugal compressor is an equipment that primarily uses air as a working fluid and transfers the energy generated from rotating impeller blades to the working fluid. This results in increased static pressure that pushes air from high-pressure area to low-pressure area. A centrifugal compressor is a turbo compressor or dynamic compressor with a radial design. The term ‘centrifugal’ implies a radial flow of gas. It also implies that the transfer of energy is a result of centrifugal forces acting on the gas. Centrifugal compressors function at a constant pressure. Their performance is affected by several external factors such as gas conditions and inlet temperature. Centrifugal compressors offer several advantages. These include good reliability, higher flow capacity per unit of installed weight and space, and less maintenance.
Centrifugal compressors can be of different sizes. The physical size of a centrifugal compressor is determined by the flow rate at its inlet. On the contrary, rotating speed the centrifugal compressor is an inverse function of its diameter. This means larger flow compressors can operate at a lower speed of around 3,000 rpm and smaller compressors can operate at a speed of up to 30,000 rpm. Power requirement for centrifugal compressors can vary, depending on application, from 500 hp to more than 50,000 hp.
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Centrifugal Compressors Market: Key Segments
The global centrifugal compressors market can be segmented based on type, end-user industry, and region. In terms of type, the market can be segmented into single-stage centrifugal compressors and multi-stage centrifugal compressors. The former is generally used for continuous service in applications such as petrochemicals, refineries, and oil & gas. A single-stage centrifugal compressor can have a beam design or an overhung impeller arrangement. Multi-stage centrifugal compressors are used for compression solutions in low-, medium-, and high-pressure services such as low-molecular-weight gases and refrigeration applications. A variety of methods are available for arrangement of multi-stage centrifugal compressors. For example, impellers can be arranged in back-to-back or inline configuration. The American Petroleum Institute (API) has developed a market standard called ‘API Standard 617’ to govern the designing and manufacture of centrifugal compressors. A unit of centrifugal compressor designed according to the established standards can function for a long time.
Based on end-user industry, the centrifugal compressors market can be segmented into oil & gas, power generation, chemicals & petrochemicals, industrial gases, and others. The energy sector, which consists of power generation and oil & gas industries, is an important end-user of centrifugal compressors. The others segment comprises a variety of industries such as textile, plastics, glass, food & beverages, and medical & pharmaceuticals.
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Centrifugal Compressors Market: Regional Outlook
Geographically, the global centrifugal compressors market can be segmented into North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Middle East & Africa. Developed countries in North America and Europe have been the traditional markets for centrifugal compressors. On the other hand, the rising industrialization in developing countries of Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa is presenting growth opportunities to companies operating in the centrifugal compressors market in these countries.
Centrifugal Compressors Market: Key Players
Centrifugal compressors is a relatively difficult product to manufacture. Hence, the number of companies operating in the centrifugal compressors market is relatively limited. Some of the major players include Dresser-Rand, Atlas Copco, IHI, Kobelco, and Hitachi.
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