Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Jaguar Reduces Costs With Compair Compressors

Jaguar has worked with Compair to upgrade the compressed air networks at its West Midlands-based plants, using an ongoing programme of energy audits to reduce air power consumption. The company said air power consumption was reduced by 26 per cent per annum with a maximum two years' payback at each site. In order to calculate the energy savings that could be achieved with a new compressed air system, Compair first carried out a simple air audit on the existing units.

A data-logging device was fitted to each machine to analyse a number of parameters including air use, pressures and energy consumption. With readings taken every second over a two-week period, Compair engineers were able to build an accurate overview of Jaguar's compressed air requirements and could demonstrate a number of cost savings that could be made by upgrading to newer models. As a result, Jaguar chose to upgrade the network to two fixed-speed and one variable-speed rotary screw compressor.

The system is configured so that one fixed-speed unit and the variable-speed machine run constantly, with the remaining compressor coming online to cope with increased demand. After one year of operating that new compressor system, Jaguar reported that the energy savings has exceeded the original calculations, resulting in a faster payback period than anticipated, of less than two years. The second stage of the programme saw the upgrade of the compressor system at the Browns Lane veneer-manufacturing centre.

The final site to benefit from Compair's energy audit programme is the Castle Bromwich assembly plant. Here, there are four compressor houses; three serving the main ring network and one for the paint shop. Jaguar is continuing to log the air usage of each system and to date has replaced on machine with an L132SR variable-speed compressor, to help meet demands from the network more efficiently. The company is also benefiting from Compair's Assure Plus service plan, which has helped to reduce annual maintenance costs by almost 50 per cent and ensures the efficient, round-the clock operation of each compressor in the network.

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