Strategies to Promote Energy-Efficient Compressed Air Systems Among Indian Companies

In Energy Efficiency in Motor Systems
Chapter: 35
Book Chapter

Compressed air systems account for 5–35% of electricity use among the Indian manufacturing sector. It shares a significant portion of the production cost, but its energy-efficiency measures are not widely applied in India yet. From 2011 to 2018, the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) and The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) jointly conducted 30 preliminary energy audits at different sectors including textiles, pharmaceuticals, automobiles, auto components, casting, and forging to promote energy efficiency of compressed air systems. Through this, it was found that there is a vast scope for energy savings by adopting better operating and maintenance practices, such as leakage prevention, pressure adjustment, air controls, improving ventilation, and installing appropriate compressors. Based on these findings, most of the audited companies incorporated the recommended operating and maintenance practices, and some installed new compressors. Information on energy efficiency is widely available in India; however, it was observed that companies, particularly small- and medium-scale enterprises (SMEs) had limited knowledge about it. To address this gap, authors carried out preliminary energy audits, organised awareness workshops, and trained energy personnel. This paper analyses the effect of these interventions and recommends actions to adopt a packaged approach to promote energy efficiency of the compressed air system in a more comprehensive manner.