A trend appears to be rising out of Mount Vernon, Ohio in the form of new compressor models on a more frequent basis. Nearly two years after releasing two new compressor frames, Ariel Corp. has done it again with another model – the KBE.

The latest compressor adds another KB frame to Ariel’s midline compressors – the heart of the company’s lineup. In 2018, Ariel debuted the KBK:T frames, which also fall into the midline range. Unlike the KBK:T frames, which fell between two compressor models in the lineup, the KBE serves as an alternative for operators using Ariel’s JGH:E:T compressors with ET cylinders.

“We’ve made a significant investment in compressor technology and will leverage that to bring new products to the marketplace,” said Robert Drews, Ariel’s director of marketing. “We are improving the value we provide to our customers.”

The KBE, available in two- and four-throw variations, is designed to meet the compression needs for many of the applications that use its JGH:E:K:T frames. It has the same features of other KB models, such as the KB style angled guide, which increases the structural stiffness substantially compared with the JG style frames, Drews said.

Like the JGT’s two- and four-throw variations, the KBE boasts the same horsepower and rod load, but with a 5 in. (127 mm) stroke; the JGE, JGH and JGT all have a 4.5 in. (114.3 mm) stroke. The added stroke allows the KBE to fully load 1200 and 1400 rpm engines and improves operational flexibility.

The KBE frame is rated for 1300 to 2600 bhp (969 to 1939 kW) at 1400 rpm and a 1167 fpm (5.92 m/s) piston speed. It has a 74,000 lbs. (329,168 N) total rod load; 37,000 lbs. (164,584 N) tension rod load; and 40,000 lbs. (177,929 N) compression rod load.

Another highlight of the KBE frame comes from its cylinders. The KBE uses Ariel’s new E cylinders, a derivative of its common ET cylinders found in most of its compressor models. The E cylinders offer an extended service life through the use of the CP and CPs valves found in the majority of Ariel cylinders.

“The KBE combines our latest design features with enhanced operational capabilities, along with the extensive field experience and cost effectiveness of our ET cylinders”, said Joe Fernandez, Ariel’s manager of Application Engineering. ”This product will be primarily focused in the 1000 to 1500 horsepower range, particularly popular for lease fleets. The longer stroke of the KBE matches well with 1200 and 1400 rpm engines, and also 1200 rpm electric motors,” he said.