Manifolds are used to connect two or more cylinders of gas together to increase the supply volume available to provide a continuous flow when one cylinder is not sufficient and a tube trailer or other bulk supply is not practical. Manifolds are also used when a single cylinder of gas is not capable of supplying the required flow rate required by a process.

Manifolds are commonly fabricated in a single row and are wall mounted, with cylinders either below or in front of the manifold. Double manifolds and other custom configurations are also available.

Station valves are used to isolate individual cylinders on a manifold from service. Station valves are recommended for most laboratory applications as they are a valuable back-up device in the event of a leaking pigtail or a defective check valve.

Two types of pigtails are used to connect cylinders to the manifold header, rigid pigtails made of brass or stainless steel tubing, or flexible stainless steel braided hose with a Teflon or stainless steel inner core. Teflon-lined pigtails are used for routine applications, while stainless steel inner core pigtails are used for ultra high purity applications.

Check valves on the cylinder end of each pigtail should always be installed on manifolds for flammable, toxic, or corrosive gas use. These check valves not only protect against toxic or corrosive gases from entering the working environment but also maintain system purity levels by keeping ambient air out during cylinder change outs.