Approximately 10% of the electricity supplied to Australian industry is used to compress air.1 Many industrial businesses use compressed air to operate equipment such as hand tools, pumps, valve actuators, pistons and large-scale processes.
There is significant potential to save energy and improve the bottom line in this area. It can be achieved by reducing the need for compressed air services, optimising equipment and upgrading old systems. Typically, 20–50% energy savings are possible.2
For information on types of air compressors, see Technology Background – Compressed Air.
A good air compressor energy efficiency strategy relies on an integrated approach that incorporates the following opportunities:
- Climate Energy Efficiency Case Study: Futuris Automotive 2011 (Opens in a new window)
Futuris provides seating and interior trim on a just-in-time basis to Ford Australia. At their Cambellfield site between 2008 and 2009 they more than halved their average energy intensity. This case study outlines a demonstration project that set out to identify further cost-effective energy-efficiency opportunities.
- North American Case Studies - Compressed Air Systems 2004
- Natural Resources Canada
This content provides links to a number of compressed air case studies drawn from a range of programs across North American industries.
- Energy Efficiency Best Practice Guide: Compressed Air Systems 2009 (Opens in a new window)
This is a step-by-step guide to improving energy efficiency in compressed air systems and achieving best practice. The guide will help users determine changes that can be made to reduce operating costs and improve operation and performance of equipment.
- Improving Compressed Air System Performance – A Sourcebook for Industry 2003 (Opens in a new window)
- Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory
- PDF 1 MB
This resource focuses on the improvement potential of compressed air systems. It includes an introduction to industrial compressed air systems and opportunities to improve performance.
For more resources, see Resources – Compressed Air.
Related EEX content
Footnotes ~ Show 2 footnotes
- Sustainability Victoria (2009) Energy Efficiency Best Practice Guide: Compressed Air Systems Sustainability Victoria (Opens in a new window) PDF 1.58 MB ↩
- Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (2003) Improving Compressed Air System Performance: A Sourcebook for Industry US Department of Energy (Opens in a new window) PDF 1 MB ↩