Networking Air Compressor Systems for O-I’s Plants in France Spells Energy Savings
O-I’s facilities across France have invested in centralised computer control systems for air compressors, which translates into lower energy needs, fewer emissions, and substantial cost savings.
The company aims to be the most sustainable producer of the most sustainable rigid packaging.
A plant’s compressed air system serves vital functions, driving machine movements and other uses throughout the glass packaging manufacturing process.
It’s among a plant’s more energy-intensive systems, but the new computer software helps the system work more efficiently and decreases that electricity demand.
Decreasing that demand also saves on a plant’s energy costs.
Previously, a plant’s six to 10 compressors would operate independently. But the new software creates efficiencies by linking a plant’s air compressors as a network, giving full visibility to the teams on one screen, allowing each plant to get an automatic selection of the best available combination to optimise energy efficiency while meeting the plant’s compressed air needs.
“The system allows us to secure air production and ensure better service continuity while optimising energy,” says Jean-Paul Arquillière, ETN Manager – O-I Veauche. “In addition, we have increased the visibility of the network with all the necessary information on a single screen. A fantastic time-saver!”
The return on investment has been immediate, with a significant reduction in energy consumption and the realisation of annual savings of €245,000 (about $290K USD) for the four facilities, representing approximately 3,800 MWh, or 2.3% of the total electricity consumption these four sites.
The project itself was made possible by a €416,000 grant (about $487K USD) from France’s CEE program, an energy-saving program piloted by the Ministry of Ecological Transition.
CEE pushes energy suppliers to promote energy-saving to their clients through financial grants.
The centralised systems are now installed in Veauche, Reims, Labégude, and Wingles. The centralised system is also being deployed in Vayres. O-I’s Gironcourt, Beziers and Puy-Guillaume facilities use similar systems.
Image: O-I’s Gironcourt plant which deploys a similar system as in Veauche, Reims, Labégude, and Wingles (Image: O-I).