Are You in the Market for a... Gas Generator?

Find out readers’ purchasing plans and more in these results of our annual gas generators survey.

By Trevor Henderson

In many laboratories, gas generators are quickly replacing traditional tanks, offering greater flexibility, convenience, safety, and cost-effectiveness. Gas generators offer the ability to produce on-demand supply and specialty blends of highly pure gases for various applications.

Top 6 Questions You Should Ask When Buying a Gas Generator

  1. What is your application? As the range of available gas generators continues to expand, consider what it will be used for. For example, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy operates best in the absence of carbon dioxide so users will require a generator that creates CO2-free gas.
  2. Do you require high quality gas? In many cases gas generators can produce a superior product both in purity and consistency without the risk of contamination during gas-line changing.
  3. What volume of gas do you require? Many instruments now require higher volumes of gas. If your space is small, or you expect your needs to increase over time, you may wish to consider a gas generator which will take up much less space than storing tanks of gas.
  4. Are long-term cost savings important to your project? Beyond convenience, gas generators save on shipping costs, time-related costs for changing tanks, and managerial costs for managing the safety and supply of tanks.
  5. Is noise a factor in your lab? Noise can be both bothersome and present a real health concern for those exposed. If low-noise is desirable, consider a gas generator with detachable or low-noise compressors.
  6. What sorts of service agreements are available? Is training in self-maintenance sufficient, or are service representatives available?

Gas generator types used by survey respondents:

Nitrogen 59%
Hydrogen 55%
Zero Air 39%
Purge 5%
Calibration 2%
TOC 2%
Other 5%

Applications using laboratory gas generators as reported by survey respondents:

Gas chromatography with flame ionization detection 61%
High-performance liquid chromatography 36%
Gas chromatography with mass spectrometric detection 27%
Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy 7%
TOC analysis 5%
Inductively coupled plasma systems 5%
Other 25%

Nearly 24% of respondents are engaged in purchasing a new gas generator. The reasons for these purchases are as follows:

Cheaper than gas cylinders
Switching from helium to hydrogen
Upgrading old system
Starting a new lab process
Increase safety
Building/Renovating lab

Top 10 Features/Factors Respondents Look for When Purchasing a Gas Generator:

Low Maintenance / Easy to Clean 79%
Performance of Product 78%
Value for Price Paid 65%
Low Operating Costs 63%
Service and Support 58%
Availability of Supplies and Accessories 55%
Total Cost of Ownership 54%
Warranties 53%
High Flow Rate 50%
Safety and Health Features 50%

For more information on gas generators, including useful articles and a list of manufacturers, visit

Categories: Surveys

Published In

Looking To Hire Magazine Issue Cover
Looking To Hire

Published: October 9, 2015

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Looking to Hire

Despite mounting economic, technological, organizational, and personnel challenges, lab managers are under the gun to produce results faster at lower cost—and to hit all their ROI targets.

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