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Energy Newsbriefs Blog

This current awareness service is prepared by the WSU Energy Program Library with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program. This information is provided for energy professionals and interested members of the public to highlight recent energy-related news, articles, and reports that discuss energy efficiency, energy conservation, and renewable sources of energy in engineering and policy circles.

 

Category: Compressed Air Systems

Compressed Air Systems


Innovative Blow Molds Reduce Compressed Air Pressure in PET Blow Molding

Compressed Air Best Practices, Mar. 2016, by Vincent Duvernois,  Stephane Larcade, and Jean Pilnard.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/industries/plastics/innovative-blow-molds-reduce-compressed-air-pressure-pet-blow-molding

"Technological trends in plastics manufacturing are driving the costs of production down. In industrial PET blow molding specifically, two innovative techniques have had major impacts over the last 15 years: “light weighting” the plastic bottles, and recirculating high-pressure compressed air. Both have helped to improve the energy efficiency of PET blow molding by reducing compressed air requirements dramatically."

Is Your Desiccant Dryer Running Efficiently?

Plant Services, Jan. 2016, by Ron Marshall.
http://www.plantservices.com/articles/2015/is-your-desiccant-dryer-running-efficiently/

"Pity the neglected air dryer: Much time and attention is paid to efficiently controlling air compressors, but often the control of air dryers gets ignored. If your plant has desiccant dryers, it's important to manage their operation effectively, too, in order to get the maximum return from your compressed-air efficiency efforts."

Using ISO 8573-1 to Test Compressed Air: Clearing the Confusion

Compressed Air Best Practices, Jan/Feb 2016, by Ruby Ochoa.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/industries/food/using-iso-8573-1-test-compressed-air-clearing-confusion

"Compressed air is used in more than 70 percent of all manufacturing activities, ranging from highly critical applications that may impact product quality to general “shop” uses. When compressed air is used in the production of pharmaceuticals, food, beverages, medical devices, and other products, there seems to be confusion on what testing needs to be performed. By defining compressed air contaminants, reviewing ISO 8573-1, and discussing how to designate a quality class per ISO 8573-1, this article will help clear up some of that confusion."

Meat Processing Plant Drops Compressed Air Costs 60%

Compressed Air Best Practices, Jan/Feb 2016, by Ron Marshall.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/system-assessments/end-uses/meat-processing-plant-drops-compressed-air-costs-60

"One of the statements made in the Compressed Air Challenge’s Fundamentals of Compressed Air Systems seminar is that improvements can always be made to every compressed air system, including new ones. The statement definitely applies to a Canadian pork processing facility built a few years ago. This article is based on a compressed air audit performed two years into the life of a brand new plant. The audit found numerous problems and made recommendations that helped reduce plant compressed air operating costs by 60 percent."

A Systems Approach Helps Rockline Industries Retrofit a Compressed Air System

Compressed Air Best Practices, Jan/Feb 2016, by Andrew Chase Harding and Darin Nutter.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/industries/paper/systems-approach-helps-rockline-industries-retrofit-compressed-air-system

"Rockline Industries is one of the largest global producers of consumer products, specializing in wet wipes and coffee filters. The company contacted the Arkansas Industrial Energy Clearinghouse after identifying that the compressed air system in their Springdale, Arkansas facility was a potential source of significant savings. Experts from the Clearinghouse then began working with Rockline Industries, representatives of the electric utility, and a local compressed air vendor to perform a complete evaluation of the system."

10 Little-Known VSD Air Compressor Tweaks

Compressed Air Best Practices, Nov. 2015, by Ron Marshall for the Compressed Air Challenge.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/technology/compressor-controls/10-little-known-vsd-air-compressor-tweaks

"The introduction of rotary screw air compressors controlled by variable speed drives (VSDs) is one of the best energy efficiency innovations introduced to the industry in the past few years. This style of compressor control can significantly reduce the energy wasted by compressors running in the unloaded condition. But the type of VSD control offered by various manufacturers can differ, and some of these differences can affect the efficiency of the system. This article discusses some little known tweaks to VSD compressor control, including some using hidden features that can sometimes be implemented to enhance the savings gained by the installation of this type of compressor."

Air Compressor Control for Industry 4.0

Compressed Air Best Practices, Nov. 2015, by Clinton Shaffer.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/technology/compressor-controls/air-compressor-control-industry-40

"We are in the midst of the fourth industrial revolution, or, as it is known in Germany, Industry 4.0. In broad terms, the concept describes manufacturing facilities where all of the machines — including the air compressors, along with their corresponding sensors and air treatment equipment — communicate with each other autonomously, recording performance metrics to a local controller, a wireless network, and an external database. These communicative abilities are enabled by the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), in which intelligent, networked devices link everything back to a main data hub."

Managing Multiple-Compressor Systems: Utilizing Controls to Improve Performance

Compressed Air Best Practices, Nov. 2015, by Chad Larrabee.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/technology/compressor-controls/managing-multiple-compressor-systems-utilizing-controls-improve-perfo

"An unmanaged control scheme for a bank of air compressors is a recipe for unnecessary consumption of power, as well as increased or unplanned maintenance. Controlling air compressors with only their on-board controllers can cause one or more of the following problems:
  • Too many compressors are running.
  • The wrong combination of compressors is running.
  • Pressure is higher than it needs to be."

Aluminum Plant Meters Compressed Air Flow to Solve Capacity Issues

Compressed Air Best Practices, Oct. 2015, by Jack Sine.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/technology/instrumentation/aluminum-plant-meters-compressed-air-flow-solve-capacity-issues

"A major Midwestern aluminum plant was experiencing dwindling compressed air capacity, primarily due to air leaks. If those capacity issues went unresolved, the facility would have needed rental compressors to keep up with demand. Instead, they turned to flow metering to identify and fix the leaks. In this article, they share their solutions with others who may be having similar difficulties."

Steel Mill Energy Audits Include Air Compressor Performance Testing

Compressed Air Best Practices, Oct. 2015, by Eric Lee.
http://www.airbestpractices.com/industries/metals/steel-mill-energy-audits-include-air-compressor-performance-testing

"EnSave, an energy auditing company based in Richmond, Vermont, recently performed compressed air audits at two facilities of a leading U.S. steel manufacturer. Both plants are mills that melt, cast, and roll steel to produce a variety of products, including: rebar, merchant bar, steel flats, rounds, fence posts, channel bar, steel channels, steel angles, structural angles and structural channels."
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