The gold standard of VSD compressors - Atlas Copco UK
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The gold standard of VSD compressors

Variable speed drive compressors have been setting the standard for efficiency and total cost of ownership. Now, its VSD+ is raising the bar

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July 20, 2022

The gold standard of VSD compressors

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

There are lots of good reasons to purchase a variable speed drive (VSD) compressor, but none are more compelling than their outstanding efficiency, low operating expenses and, as a result, unrivaled total cost of ownership.

AC VSD campaign web banner - Red background
That makes sense. After all, energy expenses are by far the biggest cost factor of operating a compressor, and every way in which these costs can be reduced will pay big dividends down the road. That was true when Atlas Copco invented variable speed drive compressors a quarter century ago, and it is even more true now. After pioneering the technology, Atlas Copco never rested on its laurels and kept innovating. The result is the VSD compressor that takes these savings to the next level: It is called VSD+. So, if efficiency and a low total cost of ownership are why you are thinking of investing in a variable speed drive compressor, then choosing one of the VSD+ models is an almost inevitable conclusion. Why? First of all, the numbers don’t lie: Energy costs make up the vast majority of a compressor’s total cost of ownership, and a VSD+ compressor from Atlas Copco can lower those expenses by 50% on average compared to a fixed-speed model. In addition, it is also much more efficient than traditional variable speed drive compressors. That is why anybody who sits down and does the math will quickly realize that the investment in a VSD+ compressor is more than worth it. Sure, its initial price tag may be higher than that of other compressors, but this next generation of variable speed drive compressors will very quickly pay for itself … and then some. Let’s take a look “under the hood” of one of these VSD+ compressors and find out what sets them apart from the competition. Most importantly, Atlas Copco developed an ingenious interior permanent magnet (iPM) motor, which sets a completely new standard with regard to efficiency. In fact, the in-house developed motor equals IE5 Super Premium Efficiency standards. It is oil-cooled, which is more efficient than the traditional air cooling and further increases the compressor’s reliability because it keeps the motor running on its optimal temperature. That is also why all bearings are oil-cooled as well.

The VSD+ compressors from Atlas Copco never run in an unload condition. In addition, they feature no blow-off losses because the high torque availability of the iPM motor allows them to start with back pressure. Since the system remains under pressure, there is no need to blow off any compressed air when the air demand drops.

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The series also suffers no drive train losses because there are no gears and no coupling. That optimizes efficiency and reliability, because the VSD+ compressors have fewer parts that can wear and tear. Finally, the range also features a superior element developed in-house especially for the Atlas Copco VSD+ compressors. However, the design of the Atlas Copco VSD+ series is only one of the reasons for its unrivaled efficiency and total cost of ownership. Its reliability and the use of premium parts ensure an optimized uptime because even the most efficient compressors cannot deliver energy savings when they aren’t running. That is why the VSD+ range features a robust build that allows the compressors to operate reliably in tough conditions and temperatures of up to 46°C (the electrical cubicle of the inverter, which is making the compressor’s efficiency possible, can even withstand temperatures of up to 55°C). The drive train of the series is IP66 rated and completely protects the compressors from dust and moisture. To reduce any downtime for periodic maintenance, all service parts are easily accessible. Furthermore, Atlas Copco has equipped the entire range with an advanced Airlogic2T touchscreen controller that allows the operators of a VSD+ compressor to further optimize the performance, efficiency and reliability of their machine. In combination with the SMARTLINK remote monitoring system, this can be done from just about anywhere on the planet. But the VSD+ range does not just directly benefit a company’s bottom line with the energy savings it generates, it also guarantees a greener production. With increasingly tougher emissions standards being enacted and more and more countries considering carbon taxes, this makes the new Atlas Copco compressors even more valuable – all while helping the planet with a more environment-friendly production.

VSD stands for variable speed drive. Hidden behind these letters is (inverter) technology that automatically adjusts the compressor’s motor speed to the compressed air demand in real time. This often saves a lot of energy and money. Find out in this e-book how a VSD can work for you.

 

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VSD Variable Speed Drive Air compressors VSD+