Sustainability in Action

Networking Air Compressor Systems for O-I’s Plants in France Spells Energy Savings

O-I’s facilities across France have invested in centralized computer control systems for air compressors, which translates into lower energy needs, fewer emissions, and substantial cost savings. It’s part of our journey to be the most sustainable producer of the most sustainable rigid packaging.

A plant’s compressed air system serves vital functions, driving machine movements and other uses throughout the glass packaging manufacturing process. It’s among a plant’s more energy-intensive systems, but the new computer software helps the system work more efficiently and decreases that electricity demand. Decreasing that demand also saves on a plant’s energy costs.

Previously, a plant’s six to 10 compressors would operate independently. But the new software creates efficiencies by linking a plant’s air compressors as a network, giving full visibility to the teams on one screen, allowing each plant to get an automatic selection of the best available combination to optimize energy efficiency while meeting the plant’s compressed air needs.

“The system allows us to secure air production and ensure better service continuity while optimizing energy,” says Jean-Paul Arquillière, ETN Manager – O-I Veauche. “In addition, we have increased the visibility of the network with all the necessary information on a single screen. A fantastic time-saver!”

The return on investment has been immediate, with a significant reduction in energy consumption and the realization of annual savings of €245,000 (about $290K USD) for the four facilities, representing approximately 3,800 MWh, or 2.3% of the total electricity consumption these four sites.

The project itself was made possible by a €416,000 grant (about $487K USD) from France’s CEE program, an energy-saving program piloted by the Ministry of Ecological Transition. CEE pushes energy suppliers to promote energy-saving to their clients through financial grants.

The centralized systems are now installed in Veauche, Reims, Labégude, and Wingles. The centralized system is also being deployed in Vayres. Our Gironcourt, Beziers and Puy-Guillaume facilities use similar systems.

O-I’s vision is to be the most innovative, sustainable and chosen supplier of brand-building packaging solutions. Our approach to sustainability is about more than what we make – it’s how we make it. Investing in sustainable technology and practices, including centralizing air compressor systems, enables us in our journey.

Allen Mireles
Allen Mireles
Allen Mireles is a wordsmith based in New England with an abiding passion for sustainability and helping build a safer and cleaner planet. An experienced writer, she has deep experience in both traditional and digital marketing and public relations and has written for a broad range of industries and media. As an avid gardener and camper, Allen loves nothing more than being outside appreciating our natural world.
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