Four Basic Steps for Energy Savings

March 18, 2015
Here are some fundamental procedures that can be used across many applications and industries.
About the Author: Jim Montague

Jim Montague is the executive editor for Control, Control Design and Industrial Networking. Email him at [email protected].

Designing and building more energy-efficient machines, production lines, facilities and end products requires users, system integrators and suppliers to implement improved practices.

Although each machine and application is different, here are some fundamental procedures that can be used across many applications and industries.

1. Investigate and document the power, raw materials, water, compressed air and other resources your processes and company are using presently, and draft a plan for conserving them. Typical solutions include selectively powering down or turning off equipment when not in use and switching induction motors and drives with variable-speed motors and drives or servo drives that can more precisely follow production requirements with power consumed.

2. Evaluate if your machine, process or factory could employ regeneration equipment, which usually employs an integrated power source and drives to secure power from decelerating devices, and use it to drive or ramp up other components.

3. Perform an audit of a single machine or production line, determine which options will help it save power or materials, conduct tests and evaluate the savings it produced.

4. Reevaluate the raw materials and components that your machines use or make into products, and investigate ways to eliminate waste, possibly via redesigns or by operating closer to tolerances or by recycling materials. Also, investigate whether more sustainable alternative materials could be used, and check which design changes they might need in your machines or production lines.

Part of the Feature, Motion Control Joins the Efficiency Revolution. Read it here. 

About the Author

Jim Montague | Executive Editor, Control

Jim Montague is executive editor of Control. He can be contacted at [email protected].

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