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Compensation for the complexity and over-scaling in industrial pneumatic systems by the accumulation and reuse of exhaust air

Leszczynski, J.S., Grybos, D.
Applied energy 2019 v.239 pp. 1130-1141
air, electricity, energy efficiency, equipment, manufacturing, mathematical models
The main purpose of this work is focused on increasing the energy efficiency of pneumatic machines. We have proposed a more holistic approach – i.e. cyclical storage of exhaust air from selected outlets of an industrial–scale arbitrary pneumatic machine manufacturing. In this way, we use a double transmission and double expansion approach that utilise the otherwise–wasted energy accumulated in the air supplying such a machine, and thus we compensate for the complexity and over-scaling of this machine in the industrial scale. Here, we demonstrated a device that converts the stored energy into electricity. We call such a device “the Energy Harvester (EH) unit”. Furthermore, we proposed a mathematical model that described the dynamics of the EH unit, which is useful in the future design of the unit for the individual designs of pneumatic machines. A series of tests carried out on machines used on an industrial scale showed the possibility of recovering the compressed air power that was previously exhausted into the atmosphere.