Extra Edition / Technical

Save Energy Now With Intelligent Industrial Buildings

September 21, 2009
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) notes that industrial buildings employ energy-intensive systems to heat, ventilate, air condition, light, and otherwise support processes and personnel. These support functions consume up to 33 percent of all energy used in manufacturing sites. In 2002, U.S. manufacturing buildings used an estimated 2 quadrillion Btu (including electricity-related losses) - more than the entire U.S. food processing industry and more than 4.4 percent of U.S. manufacturing energy consumption overall, according to DOE’s Energy Information Administration. The energy used annually by manufacturing buildings costs industry about $12 billion and is equivalent to the energy used in 34 million passenger cars or in 11 million homes.

ENERGY-SAVING OPPORTUNITIES

Industrial facilities present a unique opportunity to save energy by recovering energy and/or water from industrial processes. Waste heat from processing and/or combined heat and power systems may be used to power, cool, heat, and dehumidify the facilities. Improvements in the design and operation of industrial facilities can yield energy savings of a quarter quadrillion Btu per year by 2017, says DOE. This savings would reduce the peak load on natural gas, electric, and water systems - thus increasing energy security and improving the reliability of manufacturing systems.

As part of its Save Energy Now initiative, DOE’s Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) works with industry to foster the use of advanced technologies and best practices in energy management to capture potential energy savings. Relevant technologies include demand-based controls, low-cost wireless sensors, intelligent metering, building envelope upgrades, and high-efficiency water heaters and boilers. These energy-saving opportunities also represent manufacturing and installation job opportunities.

THE CHALLENGES

Challenges to identifying and implementing energy-saving strategies in industrial buildings, says DOE, include the following:

• Evolving technologies for HVAC, lighting, sensing, control, water management, and metering.

• Access to useful analytic tools.

• Limited understanding of demand-response technologies.

• Under-recognized value of onsite generation.

• Limited scenarios of energy transport to nearby users.

• Lack of corporate-wide energy management standards.

• Limited availability of training.

TOOLS TO REDUCE ENERGY USE

DOE said it offers facility owners and managers tools to evaluate and deploy more energy-efficient technologies, design high-performance facilities, and select energy-management best practices. Building upon its Save Energy Now program and associated assessment process, DOE’s resources can help companies accomplish the following:

• Reduce facility energy consumption 25 percent and total plant energy consumption 1 to 5 percent by adopting cleaner energy sources; energy-efficient, facilities-related best practices; and improved technologies.

• Use software tools to set an energy baseline and profile, analyze energy use, and find savings opportunities (go to www.eere.energy.gov/industry/bestpractices/software.html to access these tools):

- Quick Plant Energy Profiler to benchmark facilities.

- Industrial Facilities Score Card to quickly identify opportunities.

- Buildings Cooling, Heating, and Power Systems Screening Tool to assess the economic potential of these systems in commercial buildings.

- Industrial Facilities System Assessment Tool (beta version) to analyze building energy use scenarios.

- Data Center Tool DC Pro to help identify data center opportunities.

- Steam, Compressed Air, Motor, Pump and Fan opportunities.

• Train staff to identify additional opportunities, use analysis software, and/or become Certified Practitioner or Qualified Specialists.

• Train industrial facility designers, operators, and managers to use the latest facility energy-management best practices and tools.

• Employ design guidelines; identify and install applicable technologies.

• Use cool roof technology to design and maintain efficient roofing.

• Use wireless sensors and meters with energy management visualization tools to help maintenance staff quickly recognize and respond to energy management opportunities (e.g., steam trap failure, steam/water use in unoccupied space, filter near-full, motor pre-failure indicator, inappropriate system operation for time of day, or the approach of an electrical demand charge). See UC Davis’ Utilities Consumption Dashboard (http://facilities.ucdavis.edu/dashboard/) for a public example of an energy awareness tool.

• Use adjustable speed drives for significant energy reductions and improved performance.

• Use commissioning to verify energy savings from changes.

For more information, visit www.eere.energy.gov/industry.

Publication date: 09/21/2009

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to The NEWS Magazine

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

2014 Energy Efficiency Forum

Highlights from the 25th annual Energy Efficiency Forum in Washington, D.C.

Podcasts

NEWSMakers: Joseph Groh

Joseph Groh, an industry veteran boasting 35 years of HVAC experience, discusses the 2008 bicycle accident that cut his career tragically short, and how the Joseph S. Groh Foundation is his way of giving back to the construction trade. Posted on Aug. 22.

More Podcasts

ACHRNEWS

NEWS 08-25-14 cover

2014 August 25

Check out the weekly edition of The NEWS today!

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Prohibiting HFCs

EPA is proposing a rule that would prohibit some HFCs in select refrigeration applications. Do you agree with this move?
View Results Poll Archive

HVACR INDUSTRY STORE

plumbing-hvac.gif
2014 National Plumbing & HVAC Estimator

Every plumbing and HVAC estimator can use the cost estimates in this practical manual!

More Products

Clear Seas Research

 

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications, Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.

DON'T MISS A THING

Magazine image
 
Register today for complete access to ACHRNews.com. Get full access to the latest features, Extra Edition, and more.

STAY CONNECTED

facebook icontwitter iconyoutube iconLinkedIn i con