Improving energy efficiency of compressed air

If a compressed air station isn’t running properly, it will be using more electricity than needed – and wasting electricity is wasted money. Boge distributor Cleveland Compressed Air Services (CCAS) helps users understand their usage profile enabling them to reduce energy consumption and overall business costs, solve compressed air problems and improve productivity. A customised audit at Aqua Leisure Technologies (ALT) now investigated leakage and provided consistent and accurate results.

Cleveland Compressed Air Services (CCAS) is one of the biggest independent suppliers of air compressors and service in Western Australia and has been working as a premium dealer for Boge Compressors since 2009. For the past 15 years CCAS has provided quality service and advice to Aqua Leisure Technologies (ALT) – the largest manufacturer of technologically advanced swimming pools in Australia. In 2015, ALT engaged CCAS to conduct a compressed air energy audit on their existing system in Welshpool to understand their usage profile, reduce energy consumption and overall business costs and improve productivity.

Boge distributor Cleveland Compressed Air Services (CCAS) helps users understand their usage profile enabling them to reduce energy consumption and overall business costs, solve compressed air problems and improve productivity. A customised audit at Aqua Leisure Technologies (ALT) now investigated leakage and provided consistent and accurate results.

A compressed air energy audit is often the first step to reduce operating costs, improve manufacturing productivity and reduce capital spending. «It is essential to address all air compressor problems and look at the big picture in order to create a total solution», explains CCAS Project Engineer, Syed Abbas. Today’s advanced energy surveying equipment can audit all areas including generation, treatment, distribution and process usage. To measure the systems power, output performance and cost of energy CCAS Project Engineer Abbas used a data logger over a 24-hour cycle for a typical week. The data revealed that the 75 KW compressor was operating inefficiently between 35 to 40 percent load at the production levels at the time and estimated that the additional cost of operating this compressor would be 35,000 dollars per annum in power alone.

CCAS recommended the installation of new Boge equipment including the frequency controlled Boge SLF61-3 and S40-3 compressors plus Boge DS120 and DS75 refrigerated air dryers as well as Boge CC oil water separators all managed with the Boge airtelligence provis 2.0 central control system.

Leak detection

Leaks are a significant source of wasted energy in a compressed air system, often wasting as much as 20 to 30 percent of the compressor’s output. «All compressed air systems have leaks – even a well-maintained system may leak by as much as 10 percent, but the leak rate of an unmanaged compressed air system can be as much as 50 percent of the generated output and in certain applications even higher figures have been measured. An audit can detect each and every leak – even from a long distance (up to 15 meters) – which is useful in places that are not easily accessible or visible, optimising your resources and significantly reducing energy losses», says CCAS Project Engineer Abbas. A leak test on the ALT compressed air piping system indicated a leakage rate of 24 l/sec, with the estimated cost of producing this amount of air is 6,270 dollars per annum.

Recommendation

As result of the audit CCAS recommended the installation of new Boge equipment including the frequency controlled Boge SLF61-3 and S40-3 compressors plus Boge DS120 and DS75 refrigerated air dryers as well as Boge CC oil water separators all managed with the Boge airtelligence provis 2.0 central control system. «The use of system controllers, which control multiple compressors around a single set pressure, is one of the individual measures that results in the greatest and most sustainable improvements in efficiency», knows Mr Abbas, the Cleveland engineer. Using the actual compressed air consumption, the Boge airtelligence provis 2.0 for instance calculates the increased or reduced requirement and automatically selects the optimal compressor combination. The provision of compressed air based on consumption means that idle time is virtually completely eliminated. This significantly increases the energy efficiency of the compressed air station.

By installing the new Boge equipment the CCAS experts associated Transair pipe work at their new premises in Jandakot, which would deliver long-term savings and improved efficiency.

Great Results for Aqua Leisure Technologies

In May 2015, CCAS installed a new Boge compressed air system and associated Transair pipe work at ALT’s new Jandakot premises. To demonstrate the improved efficiency and longterm savings, CCAS conducted an audit of the new system, compared to the existing system in Welshpool. Results showed significant control improvements as well as an annual saving of nearly 54,000 dollars which means ALT made back the money they invested getting the audit done over 26 times.

 

 

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