4. Energy recovery
You should start viewing your compressor as an untapped energy resource. It could be the answer sat right in front of you.
One example to consider is the heat generated by your compressed air system. 90% of electrical input gets lost as heat, creating opportunities to convert this energy for heating systems or to generate hot water.
Before heat recovery, Telford Yarns struggled to maintain efficient production during winter months. A rise of six degrees has been achieved as predicted, alongside savings of £7,000 per year.
The solution doesn’t always mean buying new either! Convert an existing compressor to variable speed to remove offload power consumption.
5. Air distribution
It’s all very well and good getting the air right at the source but it still needs to reach the application. It’s vital to use pipework which is the correct size for the airflow, pressure and distance from compressor.
When designing a new system, consider the construction of the pipework and fittings. Aluminium is smoother compared to steel pipework, which can lead to pressure drops. And when a drop-in pressure of 25 millibars can result in a 2% efficiency loss, you’ll want to get it right first time.
6. Internet of Things
Connectivity isn’t only for smartphones and cars, it’s entering the manufacturing world. The easiest way to manage your compressed air system is to use real-time reporting. The technology allows for remote monitoring of compressor performance. Notifications include about load cycles, high temperature, service condition and other predictive factors.
It can also track energy consumption and suggest ways to improve performance. It maximises efficiency while reducing the risk of downtime.
As part of a service contract, Direct Air installed remote telemetry at all UK Royal Mail sites. Since 2015, Royal Mail have only lost production once due to failure of a component fitted before. This is because we know about a problem before the customer with remote monitoring.
When compressed air systems are correctly managed, they shouldn’t cause any concern.
Many businesses use a supplier to maintain and support their compressed air plant. The experts can focus on what they’re trained to do which benefits your business performance.
If you’d like to read more about managing your own system, you can learn how to identify a leak in your system.