An air receiver tank is an integral and important part of any compressed air system. Typically a receiver tank is sized at 6-10 times the flow rate of the system. So, if a compressor has a rating of 25 scfm at 100 psig, the receiver tank should be 150 cubic feet, minimum. In a compressed air system, a receiver tank provides the following benefits:
- The receiver tank acts as a reservoir of compressed air for peak demands.
- The receiver tank will help remove water from the system by allowing the air a chance to cool.
- The receiver tank minimizes pulsation in the system caused by a reciprocating compressor or a cyclic process downstream.
Much like a water reservoir provides water during times of drought and stores water during the wet times, an air receiver tank compensates for peak demand and helps balance the supply of the compressor with the demand of the system.
Receiver tanks are required by law to have a pressure relief valve and a pressure gauge. The relief valve should be set to 10% higher than the working pressure of the system.
It is also important to install either a manual or automatic drain on the receiver tank to remove water from the system. A coalescing filter and air dryer are best placed downstream of the receiver tank. Read more about drying compressed air.