7 important gas generation energy saving tips
Investing in an on-site industrial gas generator is a great way to reduce your environmental footprint and your operating costs. Once you have taken this important step, there are some other things you can do to maximize your gas generation energy savings. Here are seven of them.
1. Find & fix leaks
Compressed air plays an essential role in the generation of industrial gases. On average, the operators of air compressors lose 20% of the air they produce to leaks.
Finding and fixing them is a very easy and sensible action.
There are various technologies and services available for assessing the integrity of your compressed air system. You should take advantage of them periodically. They range from sophisticated leak detectors to simple measures like using soapy water to find leaks.
You should also examine your industrial gas system. After all, you are not generating your nitrogen, oxygen or other industrial gas only to have it escape through leaks.
2. Reduce transportation emissions for extra gas generation energy savings
Companies trying to reduce their CO2 footprint often overlook transportation emissions. However, these are a significant factor – even when it comes to the on-site generation of industrial gases.
It is true that your generator eliminates the frequent trips from vendors dropping off liquid or bottled gas. On the other hand, there is the issue of having technicians visit your facility to perform maintenance or other work.
To minimize these transport expenses and emissions, you should at least try to consolidate any maintenance visits for your equipment. Even better is the use of ICONS, an innovative technology from Pneumatech. It allows you to remotely monitor and analyze your generator’s performance. ICONS also offers valuable tips on how to address potential problems, which results in fewer maintenance visits.
3. Optimize your compressor conditions
The conditions where the air compressor for your on-site gas generation is located are more important than many people think.
As a rule of thumb, you want to keep the ambient temperature around your compressor low. This offers significant gas generation energy savings. For every reduction of 5 °C, you can achieve energy savings of 1.5%. That quickly adds up.
You also want to keep the air free from dust and moisture. This ensures that you have to pay less (and spend less energy) on air treatment.
Finally, you should reduce your air pressure as much as possible. For every bar that you “save,” your energy consumption will go down by about 7%.
By adding gas storage vessels, you can accommodate peak demands that would otherwise require a larger compressor that uses more energy.
4. Use energy-saving technologies
Compressing air (and therefore also the generation of industrial gases) consumes a lot of energy. Fortunately, there are now lots of technologies that can reduce that demand significantly.
Here is an example: Are you still using a traditional fixed-speed compressor? You can lower your energy costs by more than 50% by using a highly efficient compressor with variable speed drive (VSD) instead.
High-efficiency gas generators also come with features that can lower your energy use significantly. Pneumatech PPOG HE oxygen generators, for example, come with the Variable Flow Saver algorithm that generates 70% energy savings at low load.
5. Properly size your equipment
Correctly sizing your equipment is another important way to achieve gas generation energy savings. This is an issue that those generating their industrial gas on-site tend to overlook.
Most importantly, you want to make sure that the equipment can meet your demand. However, you will waste a lot of energy by choosing equipment that is unnecessarily large. To avoid this problem, consult an expert to make sure you get the sizing right.
6. Monitor your gas system
With the ICONS remote monitoring technology, you can always keep an eye on the performance of your system. This allows you to react to changing conditions, such as a varying demand.
For example, ICONS may tell you that your energy usage goes up for no apparent reason. This can help you identify leaks or maybe somebody simply left a valve open.
There are many factors that could contribute to a waste of energy, so you should take advantage of ICONS for any equipment for which it is available.
7. Use alternative energy sources
Granted, as opposed to the other tips, this will require a substantial initial investment. However, it will pay off quickly, especially at a time of high energy prices. In addition, investments in green energy are often subsidized by governments with tax breaks or other incentives.
That will allow you to recoup that initial investment even sooner. And, of course, using green energy is one of the best ways to significantly reduce your CO2 output.
Bonus tip: Achieve gas generation energy savings by replacing inefficient equipment
Did you implement some or all of these recommendations but feel that your energy bill is still too high? Then you should consider replacing your current gas generation system with newer, more energy efficient equipment.
Yes, that constitutes an additional investment. But you can talk to a Pneumatech expert to calculate how much energy you can save and how quickly that investment will pay off.