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compressed air

Compressed air — is it a sustainable power source for industry? With the rapidly rising cost of electricity, the answer to this headline question is complicated, with many variables affecting the real efficiencies relating to cost versus application.

M

ost industries in Australia

systems to ensure optimum operational

process. Compressed air may not always

and throughout the world

effectiveness.

be the optimum solution. For example, to-

rely on compressed air as

In existing installations, we need to

day’s rechargeable, battery-operated power

a major source of energy

completely and accurately review and assess

tools are in many cases more convenient

to operate equipment such

the efficiencies in the compressor itself and

and cheaper to run than compressed air

as pneumatic controls,

ancillary equipment in relation to the nature

equivalents.

air tools, pumps, valve actuators, pistons

of the demand. Today’s systems need to be

and large-scale processes. Compressed

flexible and adaptable to meet current and

air is used because it is a clean, safe and

future requirements.

convenient energy source, but compressed

Below are some questions that should

Is the system supplying the minimum appropriate air pressure for the required task?

air is also an expensive energy source. In

be asked in order to optimise the efficiency

Use of the minimum appropriate air pressure

fact, approximately 10% of the electricity

of your compressed air system:

for the required task can save considerable

supplied to Australian industry is used to

energy as the work required to compress air is a factor of both pressure as well as

pressed air as an industrial power source

Is compressed air the most efficient power source for the application?

lies in today’s technological advances in

Analysis of the cost per application needs

pressed air system can produce. Delivering

compressor design, control methods, re-

to be determined to identify the most cost-

a higher than necessary pressure results in

ticulation design and the maintenance of

effective and efficient method of running that

excessive energy use, excessive equipment

compress air. The continued effectiveness of com-

www.SustainabilityMatters.net.au

volume. Many procedures do not require air at the maximum pressure that the com-

Jun/Jul 2017 - Sustainability Matters 45

Profile for Westwick-Farrow Media

Sustainability Matters Jun/Jul 2017  

Sustainability Matters is a bi-monthly magazine showcasing the latest products, technology and sustainable solutions for industry, governmen...

Sustainability Matters Jun/Jul 2017  

Sustainability Matters is a bi-monthly magazine showcasing the latest products, technology and sustainable solutions for industry, governmen...