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Johnson Controls opens new screw compressor test lab

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Johnson Controls has completed construction and launched operation of a new $6.7 million screw compressor testing laboratory at its Waynesboro, Pennsylvania manufacturing plant. At 7,000-square-feet, the facility is one of the largest, most sophisticated testing laboratories in the screw compressor industry.

The new laboratory is used to test large screw compressors that support refrigeration and gas compression applications in the oil and gas and process industries. It allows Johnson Controls to load test and confirm performance of its compressors so customers can purchase the technology with complete confidence.

“We take our role in U.S.-based manufacturing very seriously, and this lab really drives that point home,” added Bill Jackson, president, Johnson Controls Global Products. “With its impressive size and capabilities, we’re confident that this lab will soon be known as the center for screw compressor technology in North America.”

Johnson Controls uses the laboratory to test industry-leading screw compressor technology, starting with the company’s new “RWHII” Series 408-mm sleeve bearing screw compressor and “HPSH” Series high-pressure line. The 408-mm sleeve bearing screw compressors are primarily used in large American Petroleum Institute (API)oriented applications in the oil, natural gas, and petrochemical industries. Applications for the HPSH line include gas turbine fuel gas boosting, CO2, and heat pump systems.

At the heart of the new lab is a 5,000 HP variable speed electric motor. The test loop is rated for 1,100 psig, supporting test conditions up to 1,000 psig discharge pressure. An ammonia refrigeration system equipped with a Frick RWFII 177 screw compressor with electric motor drive is used along with a cooling tower to remove heat of compression and achieve desired suction temperatures. The lab operates on nitrogen, with the ability to model a wide range of gases.

“We’re enthusiastic about this new facility because it demonstrates Johnson Controls’ commitment to product innovation and to delivering high-quality, state-of-the-art screw compressors for the oil and gas industry,” said Ed Milligan, vice president and general manager, Industrial Refrigeration, Americas at Johnson Controls. “Furthermore, it proves our commitment to Waynesboro and the local manufacturing community by supporting the nearly 450 jobs at this plant.”

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