In many (if not most) industrial facilities, the highest priority is a reliable compressed air system that supports manufacturing equipment and processes. Energy saving modifications that represent risk to the production process are not acceptable. Simply put, if the system experiences an event which causes a production curtailment, scrap, or outage, the energy efficient operating scenario will be quickly abandoned in favor of the (former) less efficient but more reliable operating methodology. ~~Using proprietary flow measurement devices and ultrasonic leak detectors, our Air Auditing experts will conduct a thorough analysis of your pneumatics to determine the most effective means of reducing energy consumption and demand charges. A major emphasis is placed on identifying waste. Because compressed air cannot be seen, does not have any identifying odor, and does not show up as a separate line item on any operating cost sheet, it tends to get classified as unimportant. It is often considered "free". In a typical system only 50% of the air generated is used for producing goods and services for profit. The other 50% is wasted with most lost to leaks and pressure drops. We will offer practical ways of dealing with the waste and inefficiency inherent to the plant system. The majority of air systems that have applied our recommended practices and methods have reduced overall energy consumption in a range from 20% to 50% with obvious improved performance, which was seen as a constant pressure at the work stations. The investment in a plant air audit so an appropriate operating plan can be developed will generate a return in value many times its costs.
The Compressed Air Challenge is a voluntary collaboration of industrial users; manufacturers, distributors and their associations; consultants; state research and development agencies; energy efficiency organizations; and utilities. This group has one purpose in mind — helping you enjoy the benefits of improved performance of your compressed air system.
The Compressed Air Challenge has developed a series of training seminars to help you evaluate your own compressed air system and apply proven techniques to reduce operating costs and improve your productivity, product quality, system reliability and competitiveness. Training from people who know compressed air. Training is led by compressed air experts who are dedicated to providing you with strategies you can implement immediately when you return to your plant. The focus of the training is to give you the knowledge and confidence you need to go back to your plant and start making positive changes in the way you manage your compressed air system. Frank Moskowitz is a Fundamentals and Advanced CAC Instructor as well as an AIRMaster+ instructor.
U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) research has shown that 75% of compressed air equipment operators have received no formal training in system efficiency. With this level of education (and lack of awareness regarding the true costs of compressed air and what can be done about them), it’s not surprising that a significant number of these systems run inefficiently. System operators need to understand their system problems—as well as the solutions they can use to deal with them.
As a point of reference, compressed air system efficiency experts find that, for the typical compressed air system, 30% of system energy usage can be saved through cost-effective measures.
The studies also showed that end-users who implemented compressed air system efficiency measures also experienced significant non-energy benefits. End-users reported experiencing benefits such as reduced downtime, improved system reliability, reduced moisture and contamination in the system air, more consistent system pressure and restored delivery of adequate pressure to all system components.