20 October, 2020

New vacuum pump range boasts 50 per cent energy savings

21 August, 2015

Atlas Copco has introduced a new range of highly efficient vacuum pumps for the UK manufacturing industry. The company claims the new GHS 350-900 VSD+ range represents a quantum leap forward in rough vacuum; offering customer benefits that include average energy savings of 50 per cent compared with conventional oil-sealed and dry vane vacuum pumps, as well as best in class noise levels and oil retention.

Dirk Ville, general manager of Atlas Copco Compressors UK, commented: “With clear synergies between compressed air and vacuum, which represent the ‘Yin’ and ‘Yang’ of air movement, Atlas Copco has been able to use its advanced compressor technology experience to design the GHS VSD+, leading to a breakthrough in energy efficiency, capable of dramatically reducing UK manufacturers’ lifecycle costs. Approximately three-quarters of companies who use rough vacuum require oil-injected pumps, which are traditionally fixed-speed, so the potential for energy savings across UK industry is massive.”


Mark Taylor, marketing manager, Vacuum Solutions Division, Atlas Copco, commented that a step-change in performance tends to come from a breakthrough in innovation. He explained that when Atlas Copco began the GHS VSD+ project it set out to develop the first generation of frequency driven oil injected screw vacuum pump. “We took the most efficient compressor element with the goal of making it suitable for vacuum operation, together with some important modifications,” he said. “Those modifications included changing the oil flow rates into the vacuum pump. This was because if you put in too much oil you drive the power up and if you put in too little you drive the temperature up. So we wanted to achieve the fine balance between the right quantity of oil while also achieving the right temperature and the minimum amount of power in the element.”

Taylor explained that Atlas Copco also wanted to have the oil sucked around the vacuum pump, rather than pumped around the vacuum pump. “That means we can have increasing reliability and reduce the number of parts in the machine,” he said, adding that the company also worked on achieving an ultimate pressure.

However, Taylor pointed out that Atlas Copco didn’t just work on the element; establishing various patents on different components in the vacuum pump. “For example, we have a patented inlet control valve, which is one of the features that allows us to run GHS VSD+ without an oil pump. This is because the valve is partially closed when it’s at atmosphere and gradually opens to 400 mbar. This means we can suck oil around the circuit. A lot of vacuum pumps use an over pressure on the discharge side to force the oil around, but that is quite inefficient from an energy point of view.”

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