Cutting the dBs at DMI

02 Dec 2019

Engineering capacity news posted by Andy Sandford

Patented compressor technology has helped DMI Precision Engineering achieve a dramatic reduction in shop floor noise levels.

Operating out of East Lothian for more than 40 years, DMI Precision has customers ranging from aerospace and automotive manufacturers to the oil and gas, nuclear and renewable energy sectors. Employing a dozen staff, its services include CNC turning and CNC milling from low quantity to high volume batch work.

To test the industrial savings potential of Vert’s products, DMI installed 10 Vert A100 compressors to run the equipment throughout its shop.

When the switch-over took place in October, DMI managing director David Black and his workshop staff immediately noticed the benefit of Vert’s patented compressor technology: a substantially calmer environment.

“Our business is by its nature a noisy one,” David said, “so anything we can do to cut down on the threat of long-term hearing damage to our staff is welcome.”

“As well as making it easier to communicate, a quieter workplace also makes it easier to concentrate, which is an important consideration for the highly-skilled work that we undertake. Although we run a modern compressor system, the reduction in constant background noise when switching to the Vert system made the working environment a lot more pleasant.”

Running solely off the Vert A100 compressors, the factory registered a noise level of 68dBA, which was a significant drop of 6dBA from the previous air system.  As noise is measured on a logarithmic scale instead of a standard linear scale, every 3dBA reduction represents the sound energy level being halved.

The project was part of a study to quantify the benefits of using  air in a manufacturing environment. It comes after Edinburgh-based Vert was selected in June 2019 to receive a funding award of £410,000 from the UK Government Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

“Providing  air at the point of use opens up opportunities to make noise improvements in a factory environment which has a significant positive impact on employees,” said Vert sales engineer John McNeil, who worked with DMI on the project. “With 80% of UK manufacturers using compressed air, there is a significant opportunity to reduce the risks of long-term hearing damage for workers.

Vert was founded in 2013 to develop its unique Conical Rotary Compressor (CRC) technology, which has been hailed as the biggest innovation in the compressed air industry of the last 40 years. This CRC technology has won multiple awards since the first working prototype was produced in 2014, producing high pressures at variable speeds with % duty cycle.