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Champion's Scholle Good Effort

cholle Industries has enlisted the aid of Australia's leading air compressor manufacturer, Champion Compressors in an effort to improve Scholle's plant-wide environmental efficiency.
Champion has customised an environmentally-friendly compressed air package to meet the compressed air and reliability demands of the Elizabeth, South Australia-based customer. Importantly, the air compressor package withstands the extreme temperature conditions often experienced in the area.

Inventor of the ‘bag-in-box’, which was first adopted by the wine industry, Scholle produces flexible containers of two to 1,300 litres on 12 distinct production lines. Pneumatic power drives the three elementary processes of film extrusion, plastic injection moulding and bag-making. Food-grade, process air quality is assured using two Champion 160-kW variable output air compressors (VOC) and a supplementary 45-kW standard rotary screw air compressor (CSE).

According to George Shaw, Scholle site and services manager, the Champion VOC air compressors have provided constant pressure supply with reduced power costs. By altering the effective compression length of the rotor, the VOC varies its output to precisely match the demand at the required constant supply pressure. “The result has been a significant energy-saving over our old air compressors, which were running flat-out at one speed all the time,” said Shaw.

Shaw explained that the smaller 45-kW air compressor is used to supplement the supply from the VOC compressors. The two variable output air compressors operate sequentially on a duty/standby arrangement, with extra air requirements satisfied by the 45-kW CSE air compressor. “We run 24 hours a day, five days a week, and if an air compressor goes down, so do our operations,” said Shaw.

The reliability of Scholle’s air compressors is central to the manufacture of their bags, which are sealed under strict heat and pressure levels. A fluctuation of more than one bar can lead to faulty bags and a loss of revenue. What’s more, in the South Australian summer, the air compressors need to meet these critical requirements at 45 plus degrees Celsius. “In the past we’ve used European air compressors which just aren’t made to handle the heat. They’ve gone down and sometimes we’ve had to wait months for spare parts to arrive from overseas – that has meant a loss in production and the extra cost of hiring portables in the meantime,” said Shaw.

Champion’s air compressors, manufactured in Australia for the hot, humid and dusty local conditions, also provide the benefit of easy and local access to replacement components. “That was a real decider for me,” said Shaw. “When I saw the racks full of spares I was sold! Champion’s service and maintenance of their air compressors has been outstanding – we haven’t really needed spares after all.”

Based on this experience with Champion in Australia, Scholle has also installed Sullair/Champion compressors at its site in Brazil. Similarly, a Sullair/Champion air-package has been commissioned for Scholle’s plant near Shanghai, in PR China. “It’s turned into a very fruitful relationship--I only wish our other suppliers were this reliable and conscientious,” said Shaw.

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