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Vacuum Engineering for 2-year Payback

Vacuum Engineering for 2-year Payback

An outstanding report about amazing results obtained by the total remake of the vacuum system at the Ball plant located in Milton Keynes, UK.

Having concluded that the original 6 screw vacuum pumps setup was too costly to maintain, the Company considered a vacuum system upgrade. Confronted with an expensive quotation for overhauling, the customer evaluated its total replacement. The time was right also for a complete remake of the pipeline system with the installation of a new vacuum receiver of 10.000 liters, in order to avoid vacuum level fluctuations in production. Pneumofore was contacted, the machine quotation for 3 x UV50 VS90 vacuum pumps was about 220.000 GBP, the required additional pipeline works were quoted for 150.000 GBP, the total amount of 370.000 GBP had to be repaid in savings within 24 months.

The remake of the vacuum piping system, according to Pneumofore specifications, was of central importance. The vacuum pumps alone would not have allowed the impressive short payback. The 6 dated screw pumps were finally replaced in 2019 with the 3 x UV50 VS90. All new pumps were equipped with a Variable Speed drive and interconnection to share the workload and hours. During the start-up the local team was trained to operate the new pumps and now, after about 1 year, the first status analysis was performed in occasion of the yearly ordinary maintenance operations. The monitoring of total power consumption provided precise data, which permitted an accurate calculation of savings. The annual savings of 170.000 GBP in electrical power consumption alone was confirmed. Within the first year also the maintenance cost was reduced by more than 15.000 GBP. The life expectancy of UV pumps is +20 years. In case of continuous running, the overhaul is recommended after 12 years of operation. Hundreds of UV pumps worldwide prove that proper maintenance can stretch the machine life expectancy to +20 years without overhauling, as the performance of the Pneumofore Rotary Vane pumps remains constant in time. With a very cautious estimate of 10 years pump’s life, we estimate that the yearly saving of 185.000 GBP confirms the payback of the new Vacuum System in less than 2 years and it will continue to save electricity and maintenance cost for the total of additional 1.480.000 GBP in the 8 years to come.

Not only the machine investment but the total expense for completely new machines, plus the full remake of the piping system, has yielded the expected Return on Investment period of 24 months.

Simplicity is the Ultimate Sophistication*

Simplicity is the Ultimate Sophistication*

The most popular Pneumofore product is the UV50 Vacuum Pump. Here are 5 units being prepared for shipping. They will be in operation at a major European hollow glass manufacturing plant. All these pumps are air-cooled, equipped with Variable Speed drive for frequency variation from 30 to 65 Hz. This allows a wide range of capacity from 1.650 to 17.800 m3/h, at any vacuum level setpoint between 50 and 450 mbar(a), [16 to 28,4‘’ Hg vacuum] with constant efficiency. The customer chose Rockwell components for the electrical cabinet. They are all equipped with PLC for remote control by means of the exclusive Pneumofore central vacuum system management device, named VacMan.
Pneumofore flexibility in adapting to special customer requests highlights the competence of our engineering team and sets us apart from our competitors. In the long run, the features of the UV50 pumps which are highly respected by our global users are not necessarily of an electronic nature. Provided the setup of the entire vacuum system is properly dimensioned and fine-tuned, what operators value is the speed and low need of service. The simple and infrequent maintenance requirements notably contribute to the engineering appeal of the UV50, which is the largest and only single stage, air-cooled pump with life expectancy of greater than 20 years.


* cit. Leonardo Da Vinci

Vacuum System for Glass Manufacturing at O-I Italy

Vacuum System for Glass Manufacturing at O-I Italy

The Italian glassmaker Vetrerie Meridionali, part of the O-I Group, world’s leader in the hollow glass industry, has relied on Pneumofore vacuum pumps since 1971. Vacuum is very important in glass manufacturing: it optimizes the glass moulding process, it improves the container glass quality and it increases the production speed of the IS machines. After 50 years of constant efficiency and non-stop vacuum, the company renewed its collaboration with Pneumofore with a new centralized, air-cooled vacuum system designed for higher efficiency and unmatchable energy savings.

Focus on Energy Efficiency at Latamcan

Focus on Energy Efficiency at Latamcan

As a leading supplier of centralized vacuum and air systems for the 2-pcs can industry, Pneumofore was welcomed as a keynote speaker at Latamcan 2020, the technical conference and exhibition for canmakers and suppliers operating in the Latin America metal packaging sector. Held in São Paulo, Brazil, the event is among the major international conferences and tradeshows of this sector. High audience participation and interest was raised by the low Life Cycle Cost approach of Pneumofore Rotary Vane solutions, presented at the technical forum by Rolf Hilfiker, Pneumofore CEO. The presentation focused on the high energy savings that can be achieved with the correct pressure setting in the supply of compressed air and vacuum. In particular, in 2-pc can production, the splitting of compressed air in high and low pressure loops can be extremely cost effective. On the vacuum side, a conservative high vacuum level approach is often useless, unexpectedly highly expensive and not environmentally friendly. The company’s environmental values versus planned obsolescence, water waste and carbon emissions was also highly appreciated. The expanding presence in Central and South America is an acknowledgment of Pneumofore commitment to supply the can industry with pneumatic machines designed for maximum durability, energy efficiency and constant performance over time.

Tailored Machine Language Solutions

Tailored Machine Language Solutions

Addressing the bespoke needs of our clientele is of key importance to Pneumofore. With a growing base of global customers having diverse specifications, our company is set to manufacture tailored machines and to answer any particular client’s request. This is the case of large industrial systems with monitoring integration that allows the direct communication between the machine room and the mostly PLC-driven controls. Our team of highly skilled engineers is constantly working to find better communication solutions, individually customized with specific components and languages.

12.800 m3/h Centralized Vacuum in Mexico

12.800 m3/h Centralized Vacuum in Mexico

Vacuum centralization means to generate pneumatic energy with one source only, instead of several split rooms. This was the solution preferred by a renowned hollow glass manufacturer in Mexico, which decided to design its new glass plant right from the very beginning. The customer chose two Pneumofore UV100 vacuum pumps equipped with PLC and HMI. The machines have been successfully commissioned during the last weeks at full customer’s satisfaction. The Variable Speed operation of these large pumps allows to adapt – fast and precisely – to the vacuum demand coming from the production. Once the vacuum level is set, here at 350 mbar(a), the rotation speed of the machines changes according to the number of lines in operation. Furthermore, the vacuum flow requirements can change in case of a job change. The extraordinary capacity range goes from 1.900 m3/h up to 12.800 m3/h. Moreover, the indications provided by Pneumofore during the construction phase were completely followed by the local engineers resulting in a generous accessibility during the rare maintenance tasks, scheduled twice per year only.

A520.8 with 20 Months Pay-Back

A520.8 with 20 Months Pay-Back

As is frequently the case, customers who have successfully installed Pneumofore UV Series vacuum pumps return to us when considering an air compressor. After 10 years of smooth, trouble-free operation with our vacuum pumps, asking for a quotation from Pneumofore is the natural choice. Notwithstanding the higher price point, some customers trust their natural instincts, having had such positive experience with our other products and rather than opting for the questionably attractive lower costs competitor’s machines, they choose the Pneumofore Rotary Vane compressor. This was the position of Next Can Innovation (NCI) in Thailand. Our UV pumps have been running almost continuously since 2017 in their Variable Speed version. In 2019 when the requirement of a new air compressor arose, NCI decided to invest in a new Pneumofore machine. The A520.8 air compressor is in the Hot Climate version with Variable Speed. Following the start-up in November 2019, the results were amazing: the measured electrical power was reduced from absorbed 700 to 540 Amps. Considering the local cost of electricity, the pay-back time of this Rotary Vane compressor is as low as 20 months only.

True Workhorses for Non-Stop Production

True Workhorses for Non-Stop Production

The A400 air compressors shown in the picture have been running continuously for three years. Operating in harsh conditions, with ambient temperatures ranging from -10 °C in winter to +40 °C during the summer, these air-cooled machines were merely paused for maintenance purposes. The initial 23.000 hours of operation represent only the end of the break-in for these compressors. Their Rotary Vane Air-End, which is the core of Pneumofore technology, is built to last and run smoothly with top efficiency for decades. The units’ reliability is the foundation to achieve extraordinary results, but it is not sufficient alone: required is a proper state-of-art installation which is simplified by following the system engineering support included in every Pneumofore solution. We are proud to have surpassed the customer’s expectations and look forward to additional orders for installations in rough climate conditions.

Pneumofore at Asia CanTech 2019

Pneumofore at Asia CanTech 2019

The Asia CanTech 2019 conference in Bangkok had an enormous success with prestigious guests from South East Asia, seeking for the latest technology and innovations in can manufacturing. The event confirmed to be a must-attend networking platform to connect with all the industry’s top-players. Pneumofore featured among the key-note speakers and introduced its centralized vacuum and compressed air solutions for can lines with the presentation “No Air, No Cans” hold by the President, Eng. Daniel Hilfiker. The discussion focused on various topics, including: the full PLC monitoring integration in can factories; the Variable Speed operation of vacuum pumps and compressors; the optimized efficiency as result of precise pressure level setting; and the advantages of the low pressure loop. The talk attracted great attention, considering that 50% of the electrical energy in 2-piece can lines is spent on running compressors and vacuum pumps. Eng. Hilfiker highlighted the importance to consider the operating costs over 10 years, the extended performance warranties and the environmental impact before purchasing a new vacuum or compressed air system. Pneumofore has enthusiastic global references including, without going too far from Asia CanTech, the endorsement of the over 40 units of UV Series vacuum pumps and A Series air compressor operating in Thailand. Running 24/7 since 2007 with no overhauling need, these 12-year installations underpins the durable and trouble-free performance of Pneumofore machines.

Raising Energy Efficiency Standards @China Glass

Raising Energy Efficiency Standards @China Glass

Pneumofore is a traditional exhibitor at China Glass, the Nr. 1 glass industry tradeshow in PRC and one of the leading events for the Asian market, held this year in Beijing from 22 to 25 May. In collaboration with its local distributor, Ninesun, the company presents its state-of-art vacuum and compressed air system solutions for glass production, designed for maximum durability, high efficiency over decades and the lowest Life Cycle Cost. Energy efficiency, in particular, have rocketed up China’s corporate agenda and the leading glass manufacturer are making impressive headway on this matter. Like Changyu Glass, the main wine bottles manufacturer in the country and one of the top-four in the Chinese glass containers sector.

The company relied on Pneumofore to expand and optimize its Yantai glasswork with over forty A Series compressors, after experiencing the superior reliability and efficiency of the UV Series vacuum pumps. With a total nominal power of over 12.000 kW, this project represents the largest compressed air installation realized by Pneumofore for a single glasswork. The installation decreased the overall energy consumption of at least the 15% as testified by the President of Changyu Glass, Zhu Pengcheng, in this video.

Higher profits are strictly related to energy efficiency and making the difference in this highly competitive industrial world is a commitment for Pneumofore. When comparing the high-standard of Pneumofore Rotary Vane machines with other – probably cheaper – technologies, focusing only on the purchasing price can result in overspending on everything else: power usage, frequent maintenance needs, overhauling and the unfair planned obsolescence. Who pays in the long-term?

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