Less than 40% available Plant Air Compressors made available 100% for Operations

Root Cause Analysis (RCA): Less than 40% available Plant Air Compressors made available 100% for operations.

Article Type:Root Cause Analysis (RCA)
Equipment Type:Miscellaneous Rotating Machine Problems
Author:S. Raghava Chari

Note: This root cause analysis (RCA) is from real-time scenarios that happened in industries during the tenure of two or three decades ago. These articles will help you to improve your troubleshooting skills and knowledge.

Root Cause Analysis

Author RCA queries, answers are

Q- Why compressors’ < 40% only availabilities even after eliminating drive problems

A-Too poor-quality valves of listed below defects:

  1. General poor overall finish and parts’ poor fits
  2. Parts are of not proper dimension tolerances – a very essential requirement for long service lives.
  3. Mostly used coarse threaded fasteners secured parts tear apart in few hours of service
  4. Poorly hinged opening and closing reeds

Q- How to improve?

A- Compressor valves manufacturing Hi-tech task is best left to specialist firms. Hence, the author selected from a well-known Austrian OEM Vendor catalog suitable suction and discharge valves.

Final RCA solution

Though the vendor offers a custom valve at 20% extra cost, the author selected their standard valve because compressors valve ports bore increases to fit the just 1 mm more body dia Austrian valves is just a one-time negligible cost task.

Cost Savings from boosting Compressor availabilities

Below are the savings 

Compressor ownership costs neglecting the negligible depreciation costs10668698
Painting Contractor air cost bill31914894
Yearly Savings21246196
Additional expenses – compressor fitted 2 Nos. + 2 reconditioning rotatable Austrian Valves70000
Payback days1.20


Hence benefits summary is:

  1. Drive improvements and Austrian valves fitting boosted compressor availabilities increased to 100%
  2. Uninterrupted compressed air supply smoothened many plant operations
  3. Enough air availabilities stopped wasteful ‘No air availability’ painting contractors’ payments and enabled meeting the “keep the plant young” corporate goal at negligible costs – see table above
  4. The savings paid for the new Austrian valve costs in say two days

Author: S. Raghava Chari

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