Regulation systems are becoming more advanced and fast-paced development offers a variety of new solutions. These articles present a few of the control and monitoring systems for the most common types of compressors. In this article we talk about central control.
The central control system
Central control in association with compressors usually signifies relatively intelligent control systems. The basic demand is to be able to maintain a predetermined pressure within tight limits and to provide economic operation for the installation. To achieve this, the system must be capable of predicting what will happen in the system, while at the same time sensing the load on the compressor. The system senses how quickly the pressure changes in either sense (i.e. the time-derived pressure). Using these values, the system can perform calculations that make it possible to predict the air demand and, for example, to off-load/load or start/stop the machines. In a correctly dimensioned installation, the pressure fluctuation will be kept within ± 0.2 bar.
It is extremely important for the operational efficiency that the central control system selects the most economical compressor or compressor combination, if compressors of different capacities make up the system. The compressors shall run virtually continuously loaded, thereby minimizing idling periods and providing optimal economy. It is generally possible to connect older machines to these systems and therefore modernize the entire compressor installation in a relatively easy manner. Operations become more economic and availability is increased.