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VSD technology reduces energy use by 67%

January 5, 2017
VSD technology reduces energy use by 67%

Precision Pneumatics helped a manufacturer of laboratory furniture reduce the energy cost of their compressed air system by 67%  through the use of Variable Speed Drive (VSD) technology.


The challenge

The customer had one, 30kW fixed speed compressor on site. This unit was more than 10 years old and had more than 15,000 running hours.


Our team used iiTrak Energy Monitoring to analyse the operation of the site for seven days.  One of the key features of using iiTrak is that it can be installed without any disruption or downtime, meaning that it can monitor compressor operation but does not affect production.


The analysis – when extrapolated over a 50 week assumed annual operation –  showed that the compressor was operating at load for 331 kilowatt hours and operating with no load for 680 kilowatt hours, meaning that for two-thirds of the time the compressor was running it was not producing any air.


If we assume the customer’s electricity cost is £0.09 per kWh, the cost analysis would be as follows:


kWh/wk Cost
Load 331 £1,490
No Load 680 £3,060
TOTAL 1011 £4,550



Therefore, the customer was spending approximately £3,060 per year to run the compressor when it wasn’t needed.


The solution

Using a computer simulation, we analysed which of the Atlas Copco range of air compressors would best meet the customer’s compressed air requirements comparing their existing arrangements with the potential performance of a new, more efficient machine.


This indicated that the GA15VSD compressor was best suited to the customer’s requirements as it would reduce the amount of time the compressor ran without load. The results of simulating the performance of the GA15VSD compared with the existing compressor were as follows:


Weekly Power (kWh) Annual Power Annual Cost
Installed Compressors 1,011 50,550 £4,550
Simulated with GA15 VSD 336 16,800 £1,512
Potential Saving 33,750 £3,038


The outcome

The customer is enjoying a 67% reduction in their energy usage and associated costs. Given that the typical life cycle of an Atlas Copco compressor is around 15 years, they will be enjoying the financial and environmental benefits of upgrading to VSD technology for many years to come.


Could you save 67% on your energy bills?

To find out more about how Precision Pneumatics can help you save money on your compressed air and pneumatics solutions, contact us today or call 0151 546 6689.

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