Compressed air system cuts plastics plant's energy costs

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A UK plastics company has cut its energy costs by £75,000 a year with new BOGE compressors and control system. The integrated compressed air system replaces 12 compressors with two, and the investment pays back in less than a year

Compressed air system cuts plastics plant's energy costsThe plastics and extrusion blow moulding company in Haydock, Merseyside, has achieved significant energy cost savings, reduced its carbon footprint and prepared for future expansion with a new BOGE integrated compressed air system. The project was managed by BOGE Platinum Partner Airflow Compressors and Pneumatics, which supplied two BOGE S-range compressors and the BOGE Airtelligence Provis 2.0 Master controller.

With rapid growth creating significant new demands for compressed air across the company’s operations, the customer realised it was time to reassess the design and operation of its compressed air supply. It asked Airflow to audit energy use at its production site, to see if there were opportunities to reduce energy costs alongside the required capacity increase.

The company’s existing compressed air infrastructure, which had grown incrementally over time, consisted of three separate systems using 12 compressors with a total capacity of 975HP (727kW). To understand air demand and energy use across the site, Airflow’s engineers installed data logging equipment on each of the compressors to monitor air use and energy consumption over a week of 24/7 operation.

Susequent data revealed a significant opportunity to save energy by replacing the three existing systems with a single, integrated network using the latest control technology. The new system recommended by Airflow uses a BOGE S125 fixed-speed compressor to deliver the customer’s base-load air requirements, together with an SLF125 variable speed drive compressor providing additional capacity to match air output precisely with demand.

The latest generation of the established S series of high-capacity compressors has been designed for maximum efficiency, high reliability and very quiet operation. Innovative, energy saving features of the range include high-efficiency motors, variable speed cooling fans and the BOGE effilence air end, the most efficient design the company has ever developed. The Focus 2.0 control system integrated into the units also makes them particular easy to use, monitor and maintain.

Sensing demand patterns

In the new installation the two units are controlled by the BOGE airtelligence 2.0 Provis master compressor control, which uses intelligent algorithms to sense demand patterns and deliver the required air using the most efficient combination of compressors. System performance can be monitored and controlled remotely via a web-based interface, or using the controller’s integrated colour touch screen display.

Savings offered by the new configuration come from a number of sources, including the better management of overall system pressure, the elimination of unloaded running and a reduction in purged air. Combined with the higher overall efficiency of the new BOGE S range compressors, Airflow calculated that the company’s energy costs could be reduced by more than £74,000 a year, while also increasing air capacity by 35 per cent to accommodate future growth. And reducing the number of compressors at the facility from 12 to two also resulted in a £7000 reduction in annual maintenance costs.

Total cost of the new system, including compressors, controls and the pipework modifications required to link the customer’s three systems, was less than one year’s estimated combined energy and maintenance cost savings, providing payback in less than 12 months.

Reliability and warranty support were also important factors when it came to selecting the BOGE compressors, said Dean Urmston, National Sales Executive at Airflow Compressors and Pneumatics. “In addition to the specific power of the BOGE S-range and the technology available from the Focus 2.0 controller and Provis master controller, the customer was impressed with the BOGE five year, 42,000 hour warranty,” he said. “With the plant operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week, a 42,000 hour warranty was essential.”

 

 

 
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