One such advancement is the improvement of Variable Speed Drive technology that occurred when a new generation of VSD+
air compressors were introduced in 2013. VSD technology enables a compressor to vary its operating speed depending on the demand coming from the process. However, through the integration of intelligent inverters and interior permanent magnet motors within VSD+
compressors, it’s possible for compressed air users to realise even greater energy savings of up to 50 per cent compared to conventional fixed-speed machines, and 15 per cent over standard VSD machines. This is without mentioning the significant floor-space savings they provide against stationary compressors of comparable power ratings, which is a result of their compact design and a unique vertical build concept.
What is also worth considering are the benefits of IoT-enabled remote monitoring systems, such as SmartLink
, which can be used to intelligently predict future compressed air usage patterns and make recommendations on how to further improve system optimisation. Furthermore, with about 90 per cent of the electricity you put into a compressor capable of being re-used elsewhere through the application of energy recovery systems
, why not be smart and convert it into heating for your water supply or warehouse?
While it can be argued that adopting LED lighting is comparatively quicker than replacing a stationary compressor, it’s worth noting that assessing a compressed air system is non-intrusive and the time it takes to identify savings is relatively short. For instance, the recommendation is to undertake a data-logging exercise which, apart from approx. 15 minutes for set-up, has no impact on production. Most importantly, it results in a detailed energy report that, among other things, can flag up how much energy could be being lost through leaks in compressed air pipework. To highlight this, even a tiny leak of just 3mm could cost you more than £700 a year in wasted energy according to The Carbon Trust