Salmo River Valley Historical Mining Exhibit

Compressor part of air compressor (Medium).JPG


An air compressor is a device that converts power (using an electric motor, diesel or gasoline engine, etc.) into potential energy stored in pressurized air (i.e., compressed air). By one of several methods, an air compressor forces more and more air into a storage tank, increasing the pressure. When the tank's pressure reaches its engineered upper limit, the air compressor shuts off. The compressed air, then, is held in the tank until called into use. The energy contained in the compressed air can be used for a variety of applications. When tank pressure reaches its lower limit, the air compressor turns on again and re-pressurizes the tank.In surface and subsurface mines, industrial air compressors are used as a viable source of electricity for powering drilling and piling machinery, pneumatic tools, material conveyors, and ventilation systems.