AT a time when energy and security of energy supply is high on government agendas, an innovative and fast-growing Scottish company has created a new system which not only dramatically reduces energy use in manufacturing, but also protects workforce health.
Ayrshire-based Compliance LEV, which specialises in Local Exhaust Ventilation (LEV), has developed an Oil Mist Solution for CNC machines such as drills, lathes, mills and grinders which cuts power consumption by between 47% and 68%.
Oil Mist filtration captures the mist and fumes from metalworking fluids used as lubricants or coolants which otherwise could create a health hazard, coat machinery and damage the environment if released into the atmosphere.
The process, independently verified on more than 200 installations, has been so successful that Compliance LEV is now building a new factory – scheduled to open this summer – to cope with the surge in demand.
Founder Kevin Simmonds, a highly-experienced management consultant and change specialist, said: “We have been industry leaders in dust and fume extraction for some time now and have helped innumerable companies reduce their costs and meet their legal obligations under HSE guidance.
“However, even we were surprised at the efficiency of the new Oil Mist Solution. We expected good results but we all raised our eyebrows when the data verified how large the savings were. Clients are seeing a one- to two-year return on their investment.
“Moreover, as well as the remarkable energy savings, the process results in an 80% reduction in CNC machine downtime and a 90% reduction in filters which would otherwise be going to landfill.”
The global CNC machine market value was $96.4 billion in 2021, according to Precedence Research, and is projected to hit around $153.8 billion by 2030, driven by efficiency imperatives and new areas of enterprise, such as the manufacturing of electric vehicles.
Energy use reduction is seen as a key plank of security of supply, and UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has just created a new Department of Energy Security to improve economic growth and guard against geopolitical shocks.
Compliance LEV, founded in 2017, has specialised for the last six years in testing and maintaining systems and reviewing customer facilities for compliance with LEV regulations. It incorporates a design review into its examination and test phase and its project team rectifies any non-compliance.
As well as extraction for the metalworking industry, it deals with wood dust, titanium dust, chemicals, respirable crystalline silica, soldering, organic and weld fumes. It works with some of the UK’s largest engineering and pharmaceutical companies and also has clients in sectors as diverse as food production, paper manufacturing, quarrying and aerospace.