Atlas Copco develops battery driven portable screw air compressor

The Atlas Copco B-Air 185-12 battery driven portable screw air compressor
The Atlas Copco B-Air 185-12 battery driven portable screw air compressor

Atlas Copco has developed the first of its kind battery driven portable screw air compressor. 

The B-Air 185-12 represents a major milestone in Atlas Copco’s roadmap towards a sustainable future. The battery-powered air compressor delivers 5 to 12 bar of pressure, a stable flow rate of 5.4 to 3.7 cubic metres per minute and a 55-kWh battery storage capacity.

The B-Air 185-12 is scheduled to go into production in September.

“We are committed to accelerating the transition away from carbon-dependency and towards renewable energy sources,” said Maarten Vermeiren, Product Marketing Manager of Sustainability and Digitalization at Atlas Copco’s Portable Air Division. 

“By introducing the first battery portable screw compressor, we want to play our part in enabling a sustainable transformation and help build a better tomorrow, for society and the planet alike.”

With power delivered from its onboard power pack, in operation a fully charged unit is independent of the need for fuel or a local power source. The air compressor has the capability to perform for up to a full typical work shift. In turn, it provides both portability and productivity for those working on sites where regular access to electricity is not practical.

Less maintenance

Making the switch from an internal combustion engine to an electric motor provides several benefits, including less downtime and maintenance requirements. 

With far fewer moving parts compared to a diesel-powered air compressor, the electric B-Air 185-12 only needs to be serviced every 2,000 hours, as opposed to 500 hours for a typical combustion engine unit. 

The machine’s state-of-the-art Variable Speed Drive (VSD) and permanent magnet motor lowers the total cost of ownership, automatically adjusting the motor speed to match air demand in real-time and increasing energy efficiency by up to 70 per cent.

Atlas Copco’s testing process

Through Atlas Copco’s rigorous testing process, which includes rapid aging testing under harsh conditions and climactic chamber testing, the B-Air 185-12 has been proven to perform optimally even in the most extreme conditions – ranging from 45°C to -25°C, and 4,500 metres above sea level. 

The unit is also designed to excel in densely populated urban areas where emission and noise pollution are tightly restricted. The quiet nature of the compressor enables operators to work without noise distraction, enhancing both productivity and safety.

The B-Air 185-12 was unveiled at Atlas Copco’s recent Journey to a Sustainable Future’ event in Antwerp, Belgium. At the event, the company gathered senior business leaders from across the industry to discuss tackling the transformation to a climate friendly, low-carbon future. 

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The new battery-powered unit marks a vital step in the electrification of Atlas Copco’s product offering and is one of many developments the company currently has in store to deliver sustainable solutions. 

The battery driven portable screw air compressor came to life thanks to a long-term partnership with Perslucht Wilda, Atlas Copco’s distributor in The Netherlands for more than four decades. 

“The B-Air 185-12 is a tangible symbol of our commitment to delivering real-world solutions to help our customers and their customers adopt a more sustainable way of working, and to turning the tide on climate change,” Bert Derom, President of Atlas Copco’s Portable Air Division. 

“We ultimately want to offer a sustainable alternative to every user and every application, and this new battery powered unit is a leap closer to that goal.” 

During the event, Atlas Copco also announced that Dutch infrastructure company Van Doorn made history by purchasing the first B-Air unit.