Air compressors that, in themselves, cannot be made much more efficient may still be able to improve the energy efficiency of overall compressed-air systems by 10% or more, BCAS claims.

The British Compressed Air Society met in December to discuss the incoming ISO 11011 standard, entitled ‘Compressed air – Energy efficiency: Assessment’.

All of those present – including representatives of every country that will be affected by the legislation – expressed support for the development, which should now be published in early 2013.

But the BCAS says one question remains – the extent to which air compressors’ efficiency can be improved to meet EU requirements, and the improvement in overall system efficiency the customer might expect to see.

“A 10% improvement in energy efficiency for a compressor package may not be possible,” the BCAS concedes, “but a better than 10% saving for the compressed air system is certainly possible.”

The organisation now suggests that compressed air system efficiency may be a better method of measuring improvements under the new EU legislation than individual machine efficiency.