Unlocking the energy savings potential of your compressed air system
Any facility that relies on compressed air as source of energy will know that compressed air is a significant consumer of electricity. Not great news when you consider the heightened electricity costs we have all been faced with in recent years. However, what many compressed air users do not realise is that their compressed air system may well be hiding an energy savings potential of 30 percent or more. Uncovering and realising these savings would assist them in reducing their associated electricity bill and therefore their carbon footprint.
The key to unlocking hidden compressed air energy savings starts with a compressed air audit. By monitoring a compressed air system for a set period of time, such sophisticated computer aided audits like the Air Demand Analysis (ADA) from Kaeser, are able to determine precisely how much power and energy is being consumed by an existing compressed air system configuration. Where appropriate, this information can then be used to simulate alternative configurations for optimum energy efficiency. As an example, proprietary tools such as the Kaeser Energy Saving System (KESS) enable efficiency comparisons and accurate predictions of the energy savings that other solutions could make.
A compressed air audit may reveal simple improvements that could improve efficiency such as fixing air leaks. It is estimated that compressed air leaks can squander up to 50 percent of the compressed air produced by a typical compressed air system. However, by identifying, repairing and implementing an on-going leak detection management programme, significant improvements can be made. Reducing artificial demand and eliminating inappropriate use of compressed air may be other simple recommendations made, that when actioned will contribute towards increased energy efficiency.
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