Air-over-water hydraulics application for Wyman-Gordon cuts recharging time by 75%

System Serves One of the Largest Hydraulic Forging Presses in the World















Wyman Gordon’s plant in North Grafton, MA is home to one of the largest forging presses in the world. The company recently hired IMEC to redesign the compressor system serving this massive air-over-water application. The engineered solution is a 5,000 PSI, 600 HP compressed air system with a closed-circuit induced-draft evaporative cooling tower and packaged duplex pump skid. Efficiency of the application has been dramatically improved, with recharging time reduced by 75%. 

Wyman Gordon’s plant had been using two 50 HP four-stage, double-acting, crosshead style, water-cooled compressors since the original installation of the forging presses in 1955. A 100 HP four-stage air-cooled compressor had been added later to provide additional capacity. IMEC refurbished the 100 HP compressor and replaced the others with two 300 HP water-cooled compressors by Sauer. The new units are controlled by an Allen Bradley PLC with data monitoring through a built-in Ethernet connection. 


  • This crucial forging press runs round-the-clock and downtime is costly. In the past, when the system was taken down for maintenance, the recharging time for re-pressurizing the expansion bottles was a considerable 60 hours. IMEC’s new system reduces the recharge time to 15 hours.
  • Efficiency and reliability were improved and maintenance costs were lowered. 
  • Introduction of the closed circuit cooling system eliminated the waste of the once-through cooling water, saving millions of gallons of potable water.