North American Lighting has reduced its total compressed air energy use by 27 percent – and in the process – saves over 1,100,000 kWh/year for a total annual savings of $91,000. The project payback was less than a year. Also noteworthy is that the savings will increase as the costs of energy increase, a point often overlooked.
Many maintenance managers know a combination of sizes and types of air compressors is a good thing for efficiency of a compressed air system. This allows a facility to match demand to a correctly sized compressor. The challenge has traditionally been sequencing the compressors to run optimally. Most controllers on the market can only sequence the order in which air compressors run without selecting the best combination for current demand.
This is where the Airleader Master Controller outperforms other controllers. According to Jan Hoetzel, Airleader North America, “Our master controllers can control anywhere up to 32 compressors in multiple locations. We install a control module into each air compressor that is connected to the Master controller. Depending on the compressor locations, we can either wire them directly to the controller or utilize the existing Ethernet network to control the compressors remotely, as was the case with the North American Lighting Project.”
Following a week of data logging the North American Lighting system, a baseline was established and the system was analyzed. It was discovered the customer was running too many air compressors at the same time and their large VSDs were running fully loaded rather than trimming. Airleader simulation software uses that data to demonstrate how a master controller could reduces the unloaded energy.
The Airleader Master II Controller could:
- Match air demand and supply
- Control multiple air compressor load/unload and a VSD unit from various compressor OEMs.
- Use only one Master Controller to manage two locations via an Ethernet network, reducing installation and cabling costs.
- Ensure the system ran efficiently now and into the future, as well as providing the ability to make adjustments to the air compressor system settings remotely and providing historical data for further analysis when required.
How healthy is your air system? Are there opportunities to reduce the amount your facility spends on compressed air and maximize the operation of your system?
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