Horsepower required to Compress Air

Online horsepower calculator

The horsepower required to compressed air can be calculated with the calculator below:

N - number of stages

V - volume of compressed air at atmospheric pressure (cfm)

k - adiabatic expansion coefficient

P2 - absolute final pressure (psi)

Theoretical horsepower required to compress one cubic foot of free air (atmospheric pressure) for single-staged, two-staged and three-staged compressors are indicated in the diagram below. In general - plus 15-20%  friction.

horsepower required to compress air

The power required to adiabatic compression of air can be expressed as

HP = [144 N P1 V k / 33000 (k - 1)] [(P2 / P1)(k - 1)/N k - 1]        



HP = horsepower

N = number of compression stages

k = 1.41 = adiabatic expansion coefficient

P1 = absolute initial atmospheric pressure (psi) (14.7 psi at sea level)

P2 = absolute final pressure after compression (psi)

V = volume of air at atmospheric pressure (cfm)

  • adiabatic compression (or expansion) takes place without transmission of heat

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