They know every nook and cranny of the transparent factory: Dr Christian von Toll, Strategic Development Energy Management (left) and Gerhard Linke, Representative of Enviromental Management
“Comprehensive, informative and impressive,” was how Jörg Blümle, Quality Management Team Leader from the plastics processor Reuter, summed up his impressions during an energy management tour of Weidmüller's production facilities. “You can easily see how energy efficiency is firmly anchored in Weidmüller's overall approach and then put into practice. There's a great deal of expertise here, which we would like to make the most of.”
Striving for energy efficient production is ubiquitous, as sustainable operations bring so many advantages: international competitiveness, conservation of both resources and environment together with cost savings. Anyone who does not have the expertise or personnel resources to implement their own comprehensive energy management system will find an experienced and straightforward partner in Weidmüller.
For production from production
“Weidmüller has been dealing responsibly with energy and resources for several decades now,” reports
Dr Christian von Toll, who is responsible for the strategic development of Weidmüller's energy management. “Our new production hall is a prime example of the practical implementation of accumulated expertise in order to achieve results. It was inaugurated in 2011 and certified according to ISO 50001. We therefore use it as a 'transparent factory', where we can show interested customers a concrete example of energy management.”
The production hall at the company's site in Detmold does not require its own heating system and needs
95% less energy than stipulated by the energy-saving regulations valid at the time construction started in 2007. In addition, it heats the adjacent office building in the autumn and spring, thus cutting heating demand drastically.
“Weidmüller's heating concept is very coherent and shows interesting results,” concludes André Gericke after the tour of the 'transparent factory'. He is one of Reuter's electricians engaged in the topic of energy management. “We can certainly pick up some tips here for our own production.”
A needs-based energy management solution
The innovative heat recovery system is only one example of many showing how Weidmüller reduces energy demand sustainably. An intelligent networked system for heating and cooling, compressed air optimisation in all phases, lighting control on demand, energy-efficient insulation and the systematic optimisation of the electrical system are further efficiency measures designed into the new production hall, which result in an annual energy saving of 1,665 tonnes of CO2.
As the basis for actually achieving savings potential, Weidmüller uses a holistic energy management
system, which gathers and then displays visual information on energy flows. Weidmüller provides its customers with this integrated approach to finding a solution. It involves measuring equipment, monitoring software and consultation tailored to individual needs.
Teaching existing machinery to speak
“At the moment, many automotive suppliers are interested parties as the automotive sector is very much a leader in energy management. Here, the demand for energy-efficient automation is already an integral part of the supply chain”, explained von Toll. “This, however, does not always require a fundamental intervention in processes. In order to teach existing machinery 'to speak' without any problems, we offer a simple, retro-fit, plug-and-play solution in the form of our Energy Monitoring Box.”
Equipped with energy measuring devices, communication components and analogue signal converters, the Energy Monitoring Box allows you to get the most out of existing systems. Supplemented by consulting services and software support for controlling energy, manufacturing industries get a complete system solution, which can go as far as implementing energy management in line with ISO 50001.
Energy-efficient production right from the start
Jörg Blümle and André Gericke from the plastic specialist Reuter are totally won over by the solution shown on the tour. “With Weidmüller as a partner and over the course of an open day, we really had our eyes opened,” recalls Jörg Blümle. “Contacts have
intensified and we are already analysing potential opportunities together.” Working with Weidmüller, a measuring point concept for a new plant will be developed to provide energy-efficient production right from the start.
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Published in April 2015