CFM versus Horsepower – Why does this Ratio Matter?

March 29, 2018

CFM or cubic feet per minute is used to measure the rate at which air is moving.
Horsepower or HP is used to measure the power of the blower in a dust collection unit.

This ratio of CFM versus Horsepower is important as the goal is to get the ideal CFM with the lowest horsepower to save on energy costs.  In dust collection, you must also factor in static pressure.

To move a given amount of CFM, the fan requires a certain amount of horsepower to move the air at a given static pressure.  Static pressure is the resistance to flow measured in inches of water (wc).

For example, say you know that you need 6,000 cfm at 6 inches of static pressure for a CNC molder machine. Due to the loss of friction through ductwork and the dust collection system, you add another 4 inches of static pressure making a total of 10 inches of static pressure. Based on that, you need to move 6,000 cfm @ 10”.

Using the diagram below, you can determine what horsepower the most efficient blower needs to be to get your ideal CFM.

After reading this performance curve, a size 15 HP blower is going to get you 5,900 cfm @ 10” SP.  You know that you are maxing out the motor so there is no wasted energy.

Have more questions?  Contact us today! (216) 433-7171

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