Laboratories, manufacturing, packaging, engineering; the reliance on high-pressure gas cylinders crosses so many industries and disciplines. The cost of their replenishment is factored into budgets and projections without a second thought, but what about the other costs?
Health and safety, operational and administrative, labour and infrastructure budgets all can be increased by choosing outdated methods of delivering gas. Managers and staff alike may be unaware of the hidden costs of using gas cylinders, and how quickly they can mount up, increasing the overall operating expenses of an organisation.
It’s not new information to say that, if handled incorrectly, high pressure, compressed gas cylinders can be dangerous. Many gases used in these industries are explosive, flammable, or even corrosive or toxic. Improperly cared for cylinders can seriously endanger lab personnel, but even moving these heavy objects when they are looked after correctly can present a high risk of injuries.
Vendor contracts, rigid delivery schedules, rental fees, inflation, delayed or damaged shipments – someone has to negotiate, organise and manage the administration of gas cylinder supply. Then there’s the electricity costs, the paperwork and requirements of handling hazardous materials…it’s not an easy task but someone, or some team, has to be responsible for it.
The man-hours involved in the management of gas cylinders is rarely budgeted for, but these products need to be received, handled, stored, inspected, maintained, changed, removed and recycled. As well as the people power, there’s a physical cost of space – usually in the form of a special storage space with specific environmental and security requirements.
In house gas generation is an alternative for many commonly used gases, such as Nitrogen. By choosing to generate gas rather than buy and store cylinders, all of these costs can be eliminated.
Generators operate at low pressures, storing only small volumes of pressurised gas. They don’t need to be moved or changed, removing injury risks.
With generators, gas delivery is automatic, reliable and inexpensive. They are unaffected by inflation and supplier problems. The only ongoing cost is for electricity, and the only raw material required is air.
The management costs are vastly reduced and any maintenance can be easily budgeted for.