Case: Airbus

AIRCRAFT INDUSTRY

Case: Airbus

Airbus - Control of decentralised air system and stringent requirements

Airbus is a leading aircraft manufacturer known for its ground-breaking research and development, its technological and manufacturing efficiency, and for building the largest passenger aircraft in the world. Airbus aircraft wings are designed and manufactured in two UK locations: Filton and Broughton. Finnish innovation in compressed-air plant control, Sarlin Balance, is an unseen but significant factor in the production of the world's most technologically advanced aircraft wings. The first Sarlin Balance system was implemented in Filton in 2000. 

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The first Sarlin Balance system was implemented in Filton in year 2000. After the initial installation it has undergone several upgrades

  • In 2010 Filton plant modernised their compressed air system. LAN network was utilised and thus cabling to all individual compressors was not necessary
  • Features linked to dew point monitoring, flow metering and data logging were upgraded
  • In 2011 Broughton plant had Sarlin Balance system installed to control its upgraded compressed-air production
  • Remote control of five compressed air systems in both the Broughton and the Filton factories.  All compressed air networks are centrally managed with help of Sarlin Balance from the Filton site (in Bristol).

”Once installed, Sarlin Balance established a status of accurate and reliable compressed air management. With stable control, system pressures were progressively lowered to an unbelievable 5.8 bar”, says Airbus’ energy manager Gary Grisp.​​

All Airbus UK compressed air systems are centrally managed with help of Sarlin Balance from the Filton plant in Bristol.

 PLANT  No. of compressors
No. of compressor stations
No. of compressed air networks
Installed compressor capacity
Average compressed air consumption
Filton
 9 4 1 1.225 kW
70 m3/min
Broughton
 23 9 4 3.322 kW
160 m3/min

 32 13 5 4.547 kW
230 m3/min
Lubricated screw compressors and after treatment equipment from different manufactures

Benefits

  • A smooth supply of compressed air
  • Improved energy economy with changing air demands - energy savings 19% annually
  • Optimum pressure levels
  • Relevant real-time information on the air system
  • Data compilation: air and energy consumption, efficiency, pressure levels, fault events
  • Monitoring of all critical parameters such as pressure levels and dew points. Alarms raised in case of critical levels being approached.
  • Remote operation of 4 separate networks of Broughton plant by experts in Filton
  • Improved maintenance planning
Sarlin is responsible for the remote maintenance of the system. When Airbus is in need of technical support, they allow a Sarlin expert access to the Balance system. Remote access allows Sarlin to solve the majority of problems. If necessary, maintenance tasks are carried out on site in cooperation with the customer.