Compressed air systems are found in most industries and are typically used for production processes, for material handling and for refrigeration.
Of all motor systems, compressed air systems are typically the least energy efficient, with 80% of the input energy lost to the heat of compression (assuming no recovery of the resulting low grade heat, which is uncommon). Overall system efficiencies remain at around 10–15%. This makes compressed air one of the most expensive forms of energy in an industrial plant.
Compressed air must be produced on-site by large electric motors turning compressors. This energy use accounts for as much as 20% of a plant’s electrical energy use, depending on the type of facility.
Compressors use as much as 10% of all electricity generated in the United States. The Department of Energy estimates that as much as half is wasted, with more than 25% - 50 % lost through leaks. An additional 15-25% could be wasted through artificial demand and inappropriate uses.
Energy accounts for 70 % or more of compressed air operating costs. A 100hp compressor can consume $50,000 or more in electricity per year and compressed air system efficiency improvements can lead to Payback in just a few months.
Improving System Performance
Legacy has developed and refined an effective best-practices program to assist our customers in evaluating their compressed air system efficiency and energy costs. Our comprehensive compressed air system analysis offers a combination of affordability and convenience.
Benefits of an Air Demand Analysis:
Analysis can be performed to monitor and chart air flow, power consumption, system pressures and air quality during normal operating hours over a period of time. This exceptional tool helps create a comprehensive understanding of compressed air requirements, including the relationship between peak and base load compressors, and each compressor’s duty cycle.
- Significantly reduce energy costs by identifying and eliminating inefficiencies; Reduce production scrap/waste by providing consistent pressure to production equipment;
- Cut air compressor maintenance costs by optimizing run time and reducing excess cycling;
- Reduce production equipment maintenance costs through improved air quality;
- Minimize downtime by reducing compressor maintenance intervals;
- Reduce your carbon footprint with lower energy consumption;
- Help qualify for utility rebate programs to pay for system upgrades.
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