Traditionally compressors are fixed speed, meaning they run at a fixed and consistent speed, which produces a fixed amount of compressed air per minute.
In many real-world production scenarios, it is very unlikely to use the exact amount of compressed air produced by a fixed speed compressor. This will result in the compressor running in unloaded conditions, creating compressed air that is totally wasted. And when the majority of energy lost in a factory or plant comes from compressed air systems, it is worth considering alternative options.
Variable speed compressors are designed to save energy. The technology enables the compressor to automatically adjust its motor speed to match the air demand.
The obvious advantage to a variable speed compressor is the energy savings. VSD compressors can save up to 30% of the energy used by a similar fixed speed compressor.
70% of a compressor’s cost is energy so variable speed air compressors help to reduce energy costs and increase efficiency.
Fixed and variable speed compressors both have their advantages, so a combination of both in a large plant can sometimes be the most cost-effective solution.