Lowering operational costs through optimised energy consumption
By N Maleka, SEW-EURODRIVE
Electricity + Control, May 2015 (page 38)
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Energy-efficient drive systems are becoming more important than ever in South Africa – given the volatile power supply from the national grid as a result of continued load shedding, as well as surging electricity costs and increasingly-stringent environmental legislation.
The need to move to energy-efficient solutions is two-fold, namely; to minimise operating costs while maintaining existing infrastructure and capacity; and to lower plant power requirements and improve stability.
Energy costs can constitute up to 90 % of the lifecycle costs of systems that have not been optimised. Modular concepts are highly-effective in proactively addressing this issue, as just one single efficiency-optimised drive component can positively impact a system’s overall energy balance. A modular energy-saving system only includes components with optimised energy-efficiency.
Combining these optimised components from the modular energy-saving system can result in 70 % energy savings. The most energy-efficient solution is, however, not only dependent on the components used, but also on the supporting analysis and consulting services. As a result, it is important that energy-efficiency specialists perform regular and thorough tests on an application.
Energy consulting is the primary service in the energy-saving concept. Customer-specific consulting allows solutions providers to identify the optimal energy-saving solution for individual systems, whether they exist or are still being developed. Focus should be placed on the complete system.
- Energy costs can constitute up to 90 % of the lifecycle costs of systems that have not been optimised.
- The modular system described is suited to numerous industries and can be retrofitted onto existing machines and systems.
- Effective energy consulting services allow operations to witness real savings in the plant environment.