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Atlas Copco unveil battery-driven air compressor

The B-Air 185-12 battery-powered portable air compressor from Atlas Copco The B-Air 185-12 battery-powered portable air compressor from Atlas Copco

All-new ‘B-Air’ unit said to mark defining moment in transformation towards low-carbon future

IN the latest sign of their progressive shift to more sustainable products, Atlas Copco have expanded their portable electric product portfolio to include an all-new battery-driven portable screw air compressor. The B-Air 185-12 is said to be the first of its kind within the global industrial marketplace and represents a major milestone in Atlas Copco’s roadmap towards a sustainable future.

‘We are committed to accelerating the transition away from carbon dependency and towards renewable energy sources,’ explained Maarten Vermeiren, product marketing manager of sustainability and digitalization at Atlas Copco Portable Air Division. ‘By introducing the first battery-driven 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.’


The B-Air 185-12 features 5–12 bar of pressure, a stable flow rate of 5.4–3.7m3/min and 55kWh of battery storage capacity. 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 to plug into and has the capability to perform for up to a full typical work shift, providing both portability and productivity for work on sites where regular access to electricity is not practical.

Making the switch from an internal combustion engine (ICE) to an electric motor brings with it a host of benefits, including less downtime and maintenance requirements. Due to having far fewer moving (and therefore wearing) parts compared with a diesel-powered unit, the electric B-Air 185-12 only needs to be serviced every 2,000 hours, as opposed to 500 hours for a typical ICE-powered unit. The machine’s state-of-the-art variable-speed drive and permanent magnet motor reduces 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%.

Through Atlas Copco’s rigorous testing process, the B-Air 185-12 has been proven to perform optimally even in the most extreme of climatic conditions (from +45°C to –25°C) and at 4,500m (14,764 ft) above sea level. The unit is also designed to excel in densely populated urban areas where emission and noise pollution are tightly restricted.

Bert Derom, president of Atlas Copco Portable Air Division, commented: ‘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. 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.’

The B-Air 185-12 is scheduled to go into production in September 2023, using a compact and modular concept with multiple autonomy variants.


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