Monday, 20 May 2019

Energy Audit - Energy Saving Guide for Industries

Energy Audit - Energy Saving Guide for Industries 

Energy Audit certainly benefits all types of plants - irrespective of size or type or age. While the energy saving opportunities might differ., there is no doubt that energy audit does result in energy saving.

Each Industrial plant is unique and has it’s own opportunities and challenges., although there are some common areas wherein a plant could benefit from implementing most common Energy Conservation and Energy Efficiency measures. It is observed that majority of the Industrial plants (nearly 80%) can save good amount of energy by focusing on below areas. Of course these are only general guidelines and exact savings, investments, payback would be plant specific and is understood better during detailed energy audit.

1.  Compressed Air System
Observations :
a.   Manual loading and unloading
b.  Idle running
c.   Obsolete starting methods
d.  Manual intervention
e.   Leakages in Compressed Air System
f.    Maintenance

Recommendations :
a.   Automation for synchronization
b.  Adoption of advanced starting methods
c.   Arresting leakages in compressed air system
       
2.  Pumps
Observations :
a.   Efficiency deviation from design
b.  Damages to pump internals – impeller or casing
c.   Malfunctioning valves
d.  Ageing
e.   Maintenance
Recommendations :
a.   Impeller re-sizing
b.  Higher maintenance focus
c.   Replacement of ageing pumps (can payback within months)
3.  Fans & Blowers
Observations :
a.   Impeller sizing issues
b.  Obsolete control mechanisms
c.   Maintenance
d.  Throttled Dampers
e.   Efficiency deviation from design

Recommendations :
a. Automation for fan speed adjustment.
b. Repair of internal damages.
c. Higher focus on maintenance.
d. Better damper control.

It is observed that above 3 areas contribute to nearly 10% to 20% of total energy saving opportunity in a typical plant. In majority of the cases minor tweaks in operational practices can lead to huge savings i.e. zero investment recommendation with immediate payback.

Some of the cases include incorporation of newer technologies which help in better control of energy usage. In a few of the observed cases it was recommended to adopt newer technologies for improved energy performance. Any cost implications of new technologies was suitably supported with quick RoI / payback of 9-12 months. In all cases the recommendations had a payback of lesser than 24 months as is accepted by majority of the Companies.

There are other common areas within every plant which could be explored for further energy saving which are as below.

Other common areas for Energy Saving –
A. Using Rooftop Solar for captive use (significant savings)
Ø  Variety of financial models including ZERO upfront payment under BOOT / RESCO
Ø  Power cheaper than Electricity Board / DISCOM / Utility
Ø  Can result in 10% to 30% saving on Electricity Bill per month
Ø  Simple payback of 3-5 years for self-financed project which is attractive considering 20+ years of PV Solar life.

(Check out : How Solar Energy can boost your Company's Profits)

B. Replacing lighting with higher efficiency lights (miniscule savings)
Ø  Newer and evolving technologies such as LED, Sky lamp etc.
Ø  Can result in 1% to 2% saving on Electricity Bill per month.
Ø  Simple payback is less than 1 year for majority of the replacements.


Conclusion
Energy Audit is a highly customized exercise carried out for plants and can result in SEC (Specific Energy Consumption) reduction of anywhere between 2% to 7%. The actual saving depends on a variety of factors but overall it is almost always possible to identify areas for energy saving.
The savings can have a huge impact on a plant’s revenue and profitability based on the actual cost composition in overall plant manufacturing. 

With ever-rising grid tariffs, cost of basic energy (coal, oil, gas etc.) it definitely makes a strong business case for a plant to carry out Energy Audit. For plants which have never carried out energy audit there could be shocking revelations on this front. For plants which periodically carry out energy audit, this exercise helps in identifying niche areas for energy saving as well as keeping up the momentum.

While major energy saving lies in the process specific to a particular unit, the utilities present a generic energy saving opportunity for a plant. These energy saving opportunities are basically “low-hanging” fruits that can be used to capitalize on energy optimization by any plant – irrespective of it’s process or age or composition. By adopting few simple methods as outlined in the observations in the previous section, a plant can certainly expect to save some amount of energy., which is a welcome positive step. With additional measures the energy saving initiative could be taken up further.

Moreover a detailed energy audit reveals far more opportunities which can have a significant impact on a Company’s profit margins. Many companies are waking up to this fact and are adopting energy saving measures as a Company wide policy and not just as a one-time exercise. ISO 50001 is another step in that direction which indicates how well a Company is using it’s energy resources. Customers are satisfied in more than 90% of the cases wherein Energy Audit was carried out for the 1st time. Majority of these customers have vowed to carry out frequent and periodic energy audit to ensure maximum benefits and for maintaining continual momentum for energy saving within the plant.


(Enerco Energy Solutions LLP cannot be held liable for the outcome of the recommendations mentioned herein. Any recommendation mentioned herein should be carried out post verification by a Certified Energy Auditor)

About Us –
ENERCO ENERGY SOLUTIONS LLP (estd. 2009) is one of the oldest Energy Consultancy Companies with highly experienced team of Solar Consultants, Energy Auditors and Energy Managers led by IIT-B alumnus. We have had the pleasure and privilege to work with some of the top names across India and overseas and assisted them in adopting energy efficiency and Solar Power for their Company.

In case you are interested in carrying our Energy Audit of your plant., simply send us a mail on info@econserve.in / info@enercoenergy.in and we would be glad to assist you. You can even whatsapp or call on +91 9890737447.