First publishedin World Highways
Low noise and long service intervals: Atlas Copco's new electric variable-speed drive (VSD) compressors
Atlas Copco has launched a mobile electric variable-speed drive (VSD) compressor range especially for tough environments.
The Swedish company said the introduction of the air compressors to its E-Air range - from 250-1100cfm - will be staged throughout the year.
The plug-and-play, electric-powered compressors are for working in low emission zones. Atlas Copco said the absence of diesel emissions, combined with the low noise levels, as low as 61 dB(A), make the E-Air range perfect for underground applications such as mining or tunnelling, as air ventilation is a part of their running costs.
While the fixed-speed electric compressor needs a start-up current peak, the VSD electric range offers best-in-class versatility. Efficiency is further aided by the optimal combination of the variable-speed drive and permanent magnet motor. Finally, it offers many features that are required in tough environments.
Hendrik Timmermans, Vice-President of Atlas Copco’s Portable Airdivision,commented: "From enhanced efficiency to improved noise levels and no diesel engine emissions, the benefits of going electric within specific applications cannot be overstated. The new variable-speed Drive electric compressor range is a game changer when it comes to clean drive technology for rough and dusty environments like underground tunnelling and mining. We have the experience to protect your investment in these circumstances."
The compressor’s integrated VSD-driven permanent magnet electric motor requires only low power for start-up, so there is no need to oversize the power supply. In addition, there is no need to oversize the pneumatic tools. Combined, they offer best-in-class efficiency at partial load.
Furthermore, the smart socket system on the E-Air H 250 VSD model provides end users with the flexibility to use the same machine with multiple outlet sockets (63, 32 and 16 A).
The absence of diesel emissions is not only relevant with regard to the new Stage V diesel emissions regulations. When working in a residential area or an enclosed space such as a subway, tunnel or mine, the E-Air range provides a reliable flow of compressed air without any diesel emissions. This significantly affects the need for air ventilation in any underground application, which comprises a significant part of the running costs when using diesel air compressors. An additional benefit in these environments is the low noise level. The new VSD E-Air H 250 can operate as quietly as 61 dB(A); a lower level than a normal conversation.
VSD E-Air compressors are smaller and lighter than equivalent diesel air compressors. Because the E-Air H 250 weighs less than 750kg, it requires no special driving licence for towing it within Europe.
Because there is no need for refuelling, users benefit from increased autonomy and plug-and-play capabilities. Electric motors require no servicing, meaning service intervals for the compressor are long: once every two years or 2,000 hours.
The new VSD E-Air range features Atlas Copco’s PACE system (Pressure Adjusted through Cognitive Electronics). This enables users to control the pressure between 5 and 12 bar, in precise 0.1 bar increments, and thus adjust the flow to the optimal level required for their application. One compressor can handle various jobs that previously would have required multiple compressors.