ZDXtend compressors serve at Emirates Refreshments packaging plant

Reliability and efficiency are the key to select a compressed air vendor for PET bottling and Emirates Refreshments PJSC (Jeema Mineral Water) have provided this honor to Atlas Copco taking into account the vast experience of working with Atlas Copco and the fact that Atlas Copco’s ZDXtend 4-stage high pressure compressor is the most efficient solution available today on the market.

High pressure compressors Food & Beverage Oil-free compressors PET industry

Established in 1980, Emirates Refreshments PJSC (ERC) formally Jeema Mineral Water is a landmark in Dubai. The company started the business from a mineral water plant within the natural scenic natural springs of Jeema Wadi. To achieve the goal of making unusually pristine water available to everyone, Jeema Mineral Water Company and Jeema mineral water were born. With the help and experience of Evian and Katadyn of France the most suitable springs were found and production commenced in 1980. Later to be more competitive in the market, ERC opened their packaging line to produce environmental bottles for their water products.

The cooperation between Atlas Copco and Emirates Refreshment Company (ERC) dates back to 1999 when ERC purchased 2 units of 3-stage reciprocating HP compressors from Atlas Copco for its packaging production. After 16 years of uninterrupted service and taking into account the increased compressed air demand ERC choose to upgrade the compressed air plant. To meet the compressed air demand on both the medium pressure (7 barg) and high pressure (40 barg) at their plant in Dibba located at the periphery of the territory of northern emirates; ERC have acquired 2 units of Atlas Copco ZD Xtend 132/55 in the 1st half of year 2014.

ZD Xtend compression system is based on a combination of screw and piston technology providing 2-stage screw compression to achieve a pressure of 7-10barg as required and boosting compressed air to 40 barg with 2-stage reciprocating booster both housed in acoustic enclosures that reduces noise to the lowest in the Industry.

ZDXtend air compressors at Emirates Refreshments

“After having worked with the old standard 3-stage piston compressors, whenever I walk to the compressor house, I try and listen to see if the machines are working, as I hear almost no noise or vibrations that the standard piston units produced. The ZD concept is definitely a great concept and the fact that Atlas Copco has managed to listen to the customer concerns is worth appreciating.”

Mr. Mohamed Elgharib , Dibba Plant Manager at ERC

The ZDXtend set up allows a user to obtain both 7barg medium pressure air and 40barg high pressure air from the same set of equipment. Moreover both the compressor and booster deliver 100% pure, clean oil free air that complies with ISO 8573-1 Class Zero (2010) certification.

ISO Class Zero certification means complete elimination of the risk of contamination to the process downstream.

In a typical PET bottle blowing operation, compressed air at 40 barg is used to blow the PET bottles. Any oil or traces of oil in the compressed air generated by the oil injected compressors creates product contamination and is considered as a health hazard for the consumers. At the same time, air at 7 barg controls valves and actuators of the blowing, filling, capping, labeling and packaging lines. Compressor oil residues from a conventional oil injected compressor builds up in the machine components causing jamming and stoppage. In addition, instruments used on the lines continuously vent out used compressed air and if it’s contaminated with oil can create health risks for the people operating in the plant. Therefore most PET bottling plants choose class zero certified 100% oil free compressors like the Atlas Copco ZD system selected by ERC.

Also, in a PET plant, energy accounts for a third of the total cost of production of PET bottles. Keeping energy costs in control and bringing a reduction to the energy foot print of a plant is one of the key barometers monitored by the plant management. With 4-stage compression of Atlas Copco’s ZD solution provides 7% direct reduction in energy consumption besides elimination of refrigerant dryer with a built in heat of compression dryer provides further avenue for energy reduction.

If the compressed air system is further provided with variable speed drives the Atlas Copco ZD solution has the potential to deliver additional 20-25% energy savings eliminating energy waste due to fluctuations in Air demand that occurs in PET plants due to change of bottle size or shape, cadencies, seasonal peaks, maintenance, stop etc. An Atlas Copco ZDVSD solution is delivered with integrated VSD (Variable Speed Drive) and provides a solution by automatically tuning the compressor’s capacity to meet precisely the increased or decreased air demand thereby eliminating unloaded compressor operation and bringing the desired savings.

The ERC team while selecting compressed air system vendor made a detailed comparison between all the suppliers with an eye on operational flexibility, energy savings and maintenance cost. Atlas Copco proved that overall Power Consumption of the package was the lowest providing energy savings in operations to the tune of AED 100K (USD 27K) per annum compared to competition. Besides the selected ZD packages delivered the required flexibility in delivering the medium pressure 7 bar air and the high pressure 37 bar air from the same machines, which means that no additional compressor for 7 bar was required.

“There cannot be a better promoter than a happy & satisfied customer. We have delivered exactly what we had promised to ERC. Today the ERC plant management appreciates this and are speaking to other users in the PET industry and inviting them to visit their installation to witness the revolution.”

Khalid Shaikh , Regional Business Line Manager - Oil-free Air at Atlas Copco Services Middle East
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