Energy savings taken to the next level

Manufacturers’ Monthly caught up with Sume Perera, business line manager, Chicago Pneumatic Compressors Australia, to talk about energy saving features of their new permanent magnet CPVS PM screw compressors.

Product reliability and energy savings are important to customers all but particularly pressing for manufacturers. Chicago Pneumatic Compressors is a brand that understands this as a manufacturer of high-quality compressors. When speaking to Manufacturers’ Monthly, Sume Perera, business line manager for Chicago Pneumatic Compressors Australia, said that the company’s commitment to innovative design, technology and durability is all about making sure the customer’s requirements are looked after.

“People have different types of requirements in terms of value and what they can afford. At Chicago Pneumatic Compressors, we have listened to the concerns of our customers and come up with viable choices for their industrial needs. For instance, it is like shoes – we purchase and wear them according to reliability, comfort, and affordability. The same goes with compressors; customers have different requirements and preferences,” explained Perera.

Manufacturing applications and industries

Compressed air is one of the primary utilities required by the manufacturing sector. Whether used for air tools or pneumatic controls, compressed air is a staple for industrial facilities.

“It can be used from the smallest industries like tiny engineering firms to big power stations or a steel mill,” said Perera.

“Our compressors are small in footprint, they range from 5.5KW to 355KW and therefore, they can be used in a multitude of applications across the board. The CPVS PM model is good for medium- to large- sized manufacturing facilities. It could be used across mining workshops, production workshops, food and beverage manufacturing facilities, packaging material manufacturing and electrical and component manufacturing facilities.”

Where energy savings come into play

These days, manufacturers are seeing the cost of energy as a major business expense. The percentage of energy used by compressors is high. Because of this, it is important to have a compressor that is big on energy savings.

Perera explained that the CPVS PM is Chicago Pneumatic Compressors’ high-efficiency permanent magnet screw compressors and they are their most energy efficient compressor to date. The energy efficiency of these screw compressors is due to a new and innovative drive train with an oil cooled interior permanent magnet (IPM) motor and imperium variable speed technology. Both the IPM motor and variable speed technology have been designed and developed in-house.

“This is an innovative technology because it takes energy savings up to 45 per cent as the drive train of the unit is combined with the variable speed technology above IE4 efficiency level– hence you will get a quicker return of investment,” said Perera.

The return on investment

 In terms of durability, Perera said that the compressor can be used for 10 years or more. In general, facilities that use air compressors tend to change their compressors every 7-10 years. However, it all comes down to the energy usage of the compressor. With a good amount of energy savings, it is possible to get a return on investment (ROI) from the compressor within 3 years.

“The payback or the return of investment in this compressor could come within three years which is impressive,” said Perera.

Reliability is what that makes this ROI a reality and that is made possible with the technology within the unit, said Perera. One of these key elements would be the imperium variable speed technology of the CPVS PM.

The imperium variable speed technology in the unit regulates the motor speed. Like the IPM motor, the Imperium inverter is also designed in-house and matches the compressed air supply to the actual demand. According to Perera, this ensures that no energy is wasted, which will cut down energy bills and increases an operation’s sustainability.

Perera also highlighted the need for quality filtration in a compressor. The dust particles are prevented from entering and damaging internal parts of the compressor with a two-stage air filter. The oil quality is maximised with the oil filter in the unit. The energy efficient radial fan provides optimal cooling air at a low noise level. Within the unit, the fan has been strategically placed at the side of the compressor.

Perera described it as being similar to a car’s filtration system. “In a car, if the air filter is dirty, the oil will get dirty and that won’t be good for the car because you will get engine problems. The same concept applies to air compressors. So, you do need to have a very good quality filtration system – one like in the CPVS PM. In addition to the two-stage air filter and the oil filter, the energy efficient radial fan enhances the cooling of the entire system which in turn increases the reliability of the machine,” said Perera.

The other key element in the unit is the two separate cooler blocks – one for air and one for oil. This reduces the risk of thermal shock and increases reliability.

“Thermal shock is a phenomenon when the coolers are blocked, the operating temperature of the compressor goes up and that will affect the reliability of the drive train or the screw element. The coolers can become dirty very easily depending on the environment that it is being used in,” said Perera.

These cooler blocks on the CPVS PM are mounted on gliding rails for easier access when cleaning and making service a one-person job. All components of the unit have a long lifetime and are easy to reach for a faster service and minimises downtime to your productivity.

Always be in control

 All Chicago Pneumatic CPVS PM Compressor products come with a 4.3-inch graphical touch screen controller. All the information that the customer needs – whether it is service and breakdown warnings – can all be accessed at the touch of a button. Compressed air usage can also be monitored via the controller. The Intelligent Connectivity System (ICONS) system that’s built into the unit enables the user to monitor the compressors remotely.


“There is built in GPS system within the compressor which means as soon as it is started up, data can be transmitted to the customers’ mobile devices or personal computers. So, if they use the interface of the program application and input their information about their machine, they can get all the details of their machine and how it is performing remotely,” said Perera.

Speak to an expert at Chicago Pneumatic Compressors Australia today about the CPVS PM on 1300 555 284 or send them an email at