6th July 2023
5 things to know about nitrogen generators (and where to buy nitrogen gas)
Why do laboratories use nitrogen gas?
Nitrogen is an inert gas. This means it can be used for many types of analysis including Liquid Chromatography – Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS), Sample Evaporation and Evaporative Light Scattering Detectors.
What options are available for laboratories to buy nitrogen gas?
Laboratories typically buy nitrogen through one of three ways.
- Nitrogen Dewar
- Nitrogen Cylinder
- Nitrogen Gas Generator
Dewars supply gas in large quantities, they are typically located outside the lab and the gas is piped inside. This requires a piping infrastructure to be in place which can be an expensive addition to a lab.
Labs worldwide commonly use nitrogen cylinders for gas supply, despite their lower safety and convenience compared to other options.
However, as many lab managers become aware of nitrogen generators and the benefits they bring to the laboratory, they are choosing gas generators to modernize their lab gas supply.
What are the benefits of a gas generator?
Gas generators continually provide a consistent purity of gas so you know that it can be relied on to enable your instrument to produce accurate results. With nitrogen gas cylinders it is advised to abandon the last 10% of the gas they contain as this can become contaminated with impurities as the cylinder is used. Given how sensitive equipment has become, it is crucial that labs are not being affected by background noise during their analysis, so this consistent purity is vital to ensure clear results every time.
With gas cylinders you don’t just have a single payment when you buy nitrogen gas. In addition to paying for the gas itself, you must also rent the cylinder which it is stored in and pay for cylinder deliveries. On top of these costs, the cost of the gas is subject to market influence and frequent price increases are almost inevitable.
In contrast, with a gas generator you have one, single up-front cost and, in cases where labs have a high gas usage, nitrogen gas generators can pay for themselves in as little as 18 months. Other than the purchase cost, the only other cost which will need to be factored into your budget is for annual maintenance of your gas generator. However, maintenance plan prices can usually be locked in for multiple years, making it very easy to factor maintenance costs into your budget.
Nitrogen gas generators are a safe gas supply solution as they produce gas on-demand for your application, never storing an amount of nitrogen gas which could be unsafe in the event of a leak. On the other hand, if a nitrogen gas cylinder, which typically stores around 9000 litres of nitrogen, were to be damaged and leak, it could very quickly change the atmosphere within the laboratory, potentially resulting in asphyxiation.
Once a gas generator has been installed it never needs to be moved. As gas cylinders run out, they need to repeatedly be changed over which can be a challenge and safety concern for laboratory staff. Anyone who is required to move or change nitrogen gas cylinders within the lab should have appropriate training in how to safely achieve this which also adds training costs to the lab and additional downtime for the staff.
A nitrogen generator in your lab will generate gas whenever you need it to, at the push of a button. You won’t have to worry about your gas supply running out mid-analysis as can happen with cylinders. Moreover, when you choose the gas generator option when you buy nitrogen gas, you are eliminating all of the associated administration that comes with using gas cylinders, such as placing repeated orders, arranging deliveries and switching out cylinders.
A nitrogen gas generator is, undoubtedly, the most sustainable and environmentally friendly method of supplying your lab gas. Helping you to eliminate repeated cylinder deliveries which goes a long way to lowering your labs carbon emissions, a gas generator can supply your lab with nitrogen 24/7 while having a far lower impact on the environment than cylinders or dewars.
At PEAK, we have also tested our gas generators against other nitrogen generators on the market and the results show that a PEAK nitrogen generator offers a more energy efficient nitrogen supply than our competitors. This not only improves your environmental impact, but helps you reduce lab costs in the long run.
When considering the options for purchasing nitrogen gas for your laboratory, it becomes evident that investing in a gas generator is the best solution. Gas generators offer a range of benefits that surpass the traditional methods of nitrogen supply. Considering all these factors, it is clear that investing in a gas generator is the most advantageous choice for laboratories requiring a nitrogen gas supply.
Not only does it provide consistent purity, cost savings, safety, convenience, and sustainability, but it also modernizes the laboratory gas supply and improves overall efficiency. When seeking a reliable nitrogen gas generator, PEAK stands out as a trusted provider that prioritizes environmental impact and energy efficiency alongside a reliable and high-purity nitrogen supply. Choose a gas generator and experience the benefits it brings to your laboratory gas supply.
Need help finding a solution?
We are experts in our field - with over 20 years' worth of experience in pioneering cutting-edge gas generator technology, we have worked closely with leading instrument manufacturers to help you find a solution tailored to your specific needs.