Cool Software Tools For Managing Industrial Energy Use
Energy Matters was a quarterly newsletter for DOE's Advanced Manufacturing Program (AMO). It provided in-depth technical articles to help industry professionals save energy, reduce costs, and increase productivity. These archived issues may contain broken links or information that is no longer accessible. Some of the following documents are available as Adobe Acrobat PDFs.
This article explains how ITP's tools can be a valuable resource for measuring energy use in individual industrial systems as well as supporting an overall energy management strategy.
Industrial system assessment software tools from DOE's Industrial Technologies Program demonstrate that tools do have the power to shape the way we conduct our business. Using these powerful software tools to find ways to reduce your industrial energy use can be a good first step on the path to developing a long-term energy management plan.
ITP's software tools—for compressed air, pump, fan, motors, process heating, and steam systems—were developed to meet industry's need to measure and reduce energy use. Over time, these tools have laid the foundation for a variety of ITP activities, including end-user and Specialist Qualification training and Save Energy Now energy assessments.
Since 1995, 130,000 industrial plant personnel have accessed free ITP software tools. Many more customers are introduced to the software tools through ITP's national training program, Save Energy Now energy assessments, and distribution of the free Save Energy Now CD. As a result of this widespread effort, the total implemented energy savings from use of the software tools from 1998 through 2007 is estimated to be 250 trillion Btu. From 2006 to present, total implemented energy savings from Save Energy Now assessments alone is estimated to be 85 trillion Btu.
Birth of the Tools: Meeting Industry's Need
ITP software tools have been helping U.S. industrial customers to identify energy and cost-saving opportunities in manufacturing facilities since 1995. It all began in the early 1990s when ITP program managers asked industry representatives what resources would be most helpful to them. The answer was "software tools for evaluating energy use in industrial systems."
ITP assembled an industrial motor working group to develop a tool for motor-driven systems, resulting in MotorMaster+. MotorMaster+ is a Windows-based tool that allows users to make better motor repair/replace decisions by providing in-plant motor inventory, spare tracking, maintenance logging, and batch analysis capabilities. MotorMaster+ was well received by industrial end users, service providers, consultants, distributors, utility energy auditors, and policy makers, which prompted ITP to develop an entire motor systems management curriculum to support these users.
"We shape our tools. And then our tools shape us."
At the same time, ITP launched the robust Motor Challenge program which included demonstrations of the software tool and development of technical motor publications, a training curriculum, and a series of motor management workshops. Soon, there were more than 20,000 MotorMaster+ users nationwide.
Building on the success of MotorMaster+, ITP quickly supported the creation of a complete line of tools designed to analyze system energy saving opportunities in compressed air, steam, process heating, pumping, fan, chilled water, and combined heat and power systems. Today, the ITP software tool Web site is a one-stop resource for tools ranging from baseline applications to system-specific assessment tools.
Tools for the Energy Management Trade
A good first step in developing your energy management plan is to profile and baseline your plant's energy use through the use of ITP's Quick Plant Energy Profiler (Quick PEP). This benchmarking tool quickly diagnoses your industrial plant's energy use and identifies areas for reducing energy and emissions. It provides a good overview of the amount of energy that your plant purchases and generates, pinpoints the major energy-using systems, and describes your plant's savings potential. The evaluation takes about an hour, after which Quick PEP generates a customized report that details the results. Quick PEP also includes a CO2 footprint calculator and Chinese translation capabilities.
The Integrated Tool Suite provides the same capabilities as Quick PEP, but is a stand-alone alternative that offers the entire suite of tools without need for an Internet connection. The Integrated Tool Suite also features system-specific score cards for compressed air, process cooling and heating, and pumping systems, as well as an Industrial Buildings score card that provides a snapshot of energy used by all the buildings at a plant. Plants may prefer to use this tool for proprietary reasons.
The table below outlines the characteristics of ITP's primary software tools. ITP also offers specialized tools for chilled water systems, combined heat and power, and NOx emission analysis—all available at no cost on the software tools Web site. The following documents are available as Adobe Acrobat PDFs. Download Adobe Reader.
(PDF 1.2 MB)
|Uses plant-specific data to evaluate supply side operational costs for various equipment configurations and system profiles, and estimates potential savings and simple payback.||Yes|
|Fan||Fan System Assessment Tool (FSAT)
(PDF 1.3 MB)
|Calculates the amount of energy used by fan systems; measures system efficiency; and analyzes the savings potential of an upgraded system.||No|
(PDF 1.2 MB)
|An energy-efficient motor selection and management tool, MotorMaster+ software includes a catalog of more than 20,000 AC motors. Features motor inventory management tools, maintenance log tracking, efficiency analysis, savings evaluation, energy accounting, and environmental reporting capabilities.||Yes|
(PDF 1.3 MB)
|Allows users to evaluate repair/replacement options on a broad range of motors, including those tested under IEEE and IEC standards. Users may conduct analyses in six different currencies, calculate efficiency benefits for utility rate schedules with demand charges, edit and modify motor rewind efficiency loss defaults, and determine "best available" motors. Can be modified to operate in English, Spanish, and French.||Yes|
|Process Heating||Process Heating Assessment Tool (PHAST)
(PDF 1.3 MB )
|Surveys process heating equipment that uses fuel, steam, or electricity, and identifies the most energy-intensive equipment. Performs energy (heat) balances on selected equipment (furnaces) to identify ways to improve efficiency.||Yes|
|Pumps||Pumping System Assessment Tool (PSAT)
(PDF 1.2 MB)
|Assesses the efficiency of pumping systems and prioritizes energy efficiency opportunities by determining dollar and electrical energy savings.||Yes|
|Steam||Steam System Tool Suite
(PDF 1.3 MB)
|Steam System Scoping Tool (SSST) – Evaluates a facility's steam system operation and compares your system against identified best practices.
Steam System Assessment Tool (SSAT) – Estimates the impacts of key steam system improvements. Generates results detailing the energy, cost, and emissions savings that could be achieved by up to 16 different improvements.
3E Plus® – Calculates the most economical thickness of industrial insulation for operating conditions entered by the user.
Expanding the Reach of the Tools
The success of the software tools established the foundation for a series of ITP activities to enhance the use of these tools and help industrial customers meet their energy management goals. These activities include training, assessments, and the development of technical publications.
A complete system training curriculum was created to help users take full advantage of ITP's tools in identifying energy-saving upgrade opportunities. Since 1999, approximately 18,000 people have attended ITP training courses that focus on compressed air, pump, fan, motor, steam, and process heating systems, which are offered year-round and throughout the United States. Read the related article in this issue for details on ITP's training program.
To add to the knowledge industrial plants gain from assessments and training, ITP provides additional information in the form of technical publications such as system sourcebooks, tip sheets, fact sheets, and case studies. The case studies describe real-world situations in which companies have used ITP software tools to identify and implement energy saving opportunities.
Software Tools Save Energy Now
Companies use ITP's software tools to realize efficiency benefits throughout their facilities by quantifying potential energy-saving opportunities in specific systems. In 1999, ITP launched its plant-wide energy assessments to encourage industrial companies to measure energy use in their facilities. These cost-shared comprehensive assessments were conducted across several industries that included the aluminum, chemical, forest products, glass, metal casting, mining, petroleum, and steel industries. Read case studies and Performance Spotlights on these assessments.
ITP's software tools play an integral part in ITP's current focus on Save Energy Now system-focused energy assessments. DOE Energy Experts, who are Qualified Specialists skilled in the use of the tools, work with company's plant personnel to perform system assessments while at the same time training plant staff on the use of the tools.
Since 2006, more than 770 Save Energy Now energy assessments have been performed using ITP software tools. These have identified more than $1 billion in energy cost savings, of which more than $140 million have been implemented. Read Save Energy Now case studies of the software tools in action!
Shaping Best Energy Management Practices
ITP's industrial assessment software tools can shape the way we manage energy use and assist in developing best energy management practices. Take advantage of these free downloadable software tools to identify energy-saving upgrade opportunities—a good first step in helping you meet your long-term energy management goals.
Go for the Gold with Software Tool Training
DOE's Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) knows the value of training when it comes to educating users on its system assessment software tools. That's why it provides a variety of training options year-round and throughout the country to help companies reach their energy reduction goals.
Whether you are a world-class athlete preparing for a competition, or an industrial plant manager trying to reduce energy use at your facility, training is critical to achieving the goal. Peak efficiency is realized through instruction, dedication, and discipline, and it doesn't happen overnight. Through ITP software training, you can learn how to use these powerful tools to reach goals of energy and cost savings, reduced maintenance and downtime, and increased productivity in your industrial facility.
ITP offers a variety of training options for its self-assessment software tools that can help you start going for the gold today. End-user training workshops will guide you on each tool's capabilities and functions. Advanced Specialist Qualification training is available for those users who want to take their training a step further by expanding their skills, and becoming experts in the use of ITP software tools. If you can't attend training in person, ITP offers introductory Webcasts on each software tool as well as 1-hour weekly Webcasts showcasing software demonstrations, energy assessments, and ITP-supported technologies. View the training calendar for details on upcoming sessions.
"ITP's training program helps plant personnel proactively address industrial energy efficiency goals by enabling them to identify and implement energy saving upgrades to ensure plant efficiency, productivity, reliability, and safety," explains Bill Orthwein, ITP Technology Manager.
"Training is a key element of promoting enhanced industrial plant energy efficiency improvement," adds Anthony Wright, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Support Program Manager. "I am aware of many instances where plant personnel who attended ITP end-user training have gone back to their plants and immediately implemented savings opportunities. And the Specialist Qualification classes provide utility system experts with the knowledge of how to effectively make valid estimates of energy savings improvements in industrial plants."
End-user training is the right choice if you are involved in system or plant operations, engineering, or management, and want to increase your skill and knowledge of efficient plant system operations. These 1-day training sessions are offered throughout the year and around the country, and include sessions in compressed air, steam, process heating, pump, motor, and fan systems. Take part in end-user training workshops to:
- Increase your knowledge of energy management and industrial system capabilities
- Identify opportunities to improve energy efficiency in your plant
- Find ways to improve system performance, and decrease maintenance and downtime
- Apply ITP software tools to your energy management strategy.
Specialist Qualification Training
Plant personnel can also choose to extend their knowledge of a software tool by attending Specialist Qualification training. Qualified Specialists are experienced industry professionals who have completed advanced training in the ITP software tools. These 2- to 3-day training classes are available for the Steam System Assessment Tool, Pumping System Assessment Tool, AIRMaster+, Fan System Assessment Tool, and the Process Heating Assessment Tool. After successfully completing this training and passing a rigorous exam, Qualified Specialists are recognized as experts in applying the software to help industrial customers identify and quantify potential system improvement opportunities. In fact, Qualified Specialists (as Save Energy Now Energy Experts) have carried out 770 energy assessments in support of ITP's Save Energy Now initiative since 2006. Using ITP's software tools, the Qualified Specialists identified more than $1 billion worth of energy savings upgrade opportunities.
- You have substantial knowledge or experience in one of the software tools
- You are interested in, and committed to, successfully completing the demanding curriculum and written exam
- You want to expand your expertise and be recognized for your added value.
ITP Training By the Numbers
18,000: Estimated number of people who have attended an ITP-supported training session since 1998.
5,600: Unique facilities that attended ITP-supported end-user training sessions from 1998 through 2007.
304 TBtu: Estimated cumulative energy savings from measures implemented after end-user training sessions from 1998 through 2007.
613: Number of ITP Qualified Specialists as of December 31, 2007.
79 TBtu: Estimated cumulative implemented energy savings from 2001 through 2007 from Qualified Specialists' assessments.
ITP also offers introductory Webcasts by system and 1-hour weekly Webcasts on Thursdays. Introductory Webcasts provide a comprehensive in-depth introduction to energy management and other special topics including the use of DOE's self-assessment software tools. Thursday Webcasts offer software tool demonstrations, and information on the energy assessment process and ITP-supported technologies that can be implemented in your facility today.
Additional Learning Opportunities
Energy assessments are a great training opportunity for plant personnel. The strong focus on training before and during a Save Energy Now energy assessment is a distinct feature of this type of assessment. Prior to the assessment, plant staff are encouraged to attend a 1-day software tool training or Webcast. During the energy assessment, Energy Experts conduct the assessment while training plant personnel to identify energy-saving opportunities using the software tools. This training has been successful in promoting energy management in plants and pointing plant personnel to the numerous ITP resources available to support this effort. View the results from Save Energy Now assessments.
Take advantage of software tool training to learn new skills to add to your energy management portfolio. Check out ITP's training calendar to learn more about training opportunities offered throughout the country, and register for one today!
Awards Help States to Save Energy Now
Twelve state industrial energy efficiency projects to help local and regional manufacturers meet energy reduction goals will receive funding from DOE's Industrial Technologies Program (ITP). These awards support state projects that will provide energy assessments, software tool training, project implementation assistance, and more to help local companies reduce industrial energy use by 25% in 10 years.
Industrial energy efficiency begins at the local level, with individual plants finding ways to reduce energy use and costs. That is the idea behind approximately $9 million in federal funding being awarded to 12 state-level project teams to help them develop industrial energy efficiency programs to benefit local manufacturers.
Building on the success of ITP's Save Energy Now initiative, the selected projects aim to transform the face of industrial energy efficiency at the local level. The project teams will leverage ITP technical resources to implement activities such as energy assessments, training in ITP software tools, technology demonstrations, and energy management certification pilot programs. With the support of these awards, the states have set ambitious goals of helping to reduce energy use in industry by 25% in 10 years.
"States and regional organizations continue to be critical partners in the delivery of effective energy efficiency programs for the industrial manufacturing sector," explains Sandy Glatt, ITP Project Manager. "The interest on the part of the states in this effort demonstrates their commitment in supporting local manufacturers' efforts to save energy, reduce emissions, and lower production costs. ITP is thrilled at these new and renewed partnerships and the expected results."
The following 12 projects were selected through a competitive process for their innovative plans to assist local manufacturers in meeting their energy efficiency goals.
|California||California Partnership for Improving Industrial Plant Productivity||This project will deliver training, plant assessments, project demonstrations, new technology deployment, and energy management certification pilot activities. The project team has set energy-saving goals of 20 trillion Btu over a period of 3 years, with the potential of reducing CO2 emissions by more than 1 million tons.|
|Colorado||Colorado Industrial Challenge and Recognition Program||This project will encourage local industrial companies to set voluntary energy reduction goals; develop an industry best energy management practices round table; conduct energy assessments; assist companies in participating in utility demand side management programs; provide training; offer recognition and publicity for participating companies; and pilot American National Standards Institute (ANSI) protocols.|
|Georgia||Southeast Industrial Energy Alliance||This multi-state effort will partner with the Industrial Assessment Centers, Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and university extension services to provide training, plant assessments, plant certification programs, implementation assistance, and technology demonstrations to local companies.|
|Illinois||Midwest States Save Energy Now Partnership Program||This project aims to create dynamic partnerships between DOE, states, utilities, energy service companies, and industrial trade groups that will conduct energy assessments, promote emerging technologies, and assist in project implementation.|
|Indiana||Save Energy Now Indiana||The project will provide energy assessments, training, and project implementation assistance to industrial facilities across Indiana. This project is also part of Purdue University's program to create awareness of energy efficient, sustainable business practices to Indiana companies, and coordinate technology demonstrations and commercialization efforts.|
|Massachusetts||Save Energy Now: State, Regional, and Local Delivery||This project will assist approximately 20,000 manufacturing plants throughout New England through a targeted program of energy and combined heat and power feasibility assessments to reach a goal of 8%-14% energy savings. The project will also provide energy assessments, ITP software tool training, technical assistance, and information on a pilot plant certification program.|
|Michigan||State of Michigan Regional Delivery of DOE's Save Energy Now Program||The project will establish a Michigan Industrial Energy Center that will deliver a comprehensive energy savings program. This will provide education and certification for industrial energy managers, energy assessments, and technology implementation assistance.|
|New York||New York Industrial Partnership Network||This project will employ an incentive program whereby industrial associations will encourage large manufacturers to participate in New York State Energy Research and Development Authority programs. This project will also establish an Industrial Partnership Network that provides training and technical assistance to large manufacturers to implement energy savings projects.|
|South Carolina||Save Energy Now South Carolina||This project will provide ITP software tool training, tools, energy assessments, and technical resources to local manufacturers.|
|Texas||Supporting Texas Manufacturing to Save Energy Now||This project will develop a variety of programs tailored to the needs of all manufacturing companies, from largest to smallest. It will support training, energy assessments, project assistance, and a pilot plant certification program.|
|Washington||Northwest Save Energy Now: Industrial Efficiency Initiative||This project will help industries in Washington and Oregon identify no/low-cost and capital funded efficiency measures. The team will conduct energy assessments and training, and leverage regional resources to implement energy efficiency projects.|
|West Virginia||Development of a Regional Assessment/Implementation Save Energy Now Delivery System Partnership||This project will develop a comprehensive package of services that includes energy assessments and energy management technical resources. In addition, the team will create a Regional Energy Efficiency Knowledge Center and Marketing and Outreach Center that will serve as resource centers for industry energy efficiency services, products, financing, and tax incentives.|
Through these awards and other collaborative efforts of its Save Energy Now initiative, ITP seeks to accelerate partnerships with states and local energy efficiency groups, utilities, academic institutions, and nonprofit organizations to meet industrial energy efficiency challenges. These awarded projects support a long-term, extensive effort to expand ITP's successful Save Energy Now activities to the state level, where the greatest impact can be achieved.
Industrial Companies Get Energy Savings Results with Innovative Utility Programs
Utility companies recognize that energy efficiency practices are the easiest, cheapest, and fastest way to meet power demand. Through conservation measures, utilities can offset new power generation facilities, prevent load instability during peak times, and make more energy available for other customers. No wonder an increasing number of utility companies are providing incentives and service programs to help industrial customers reduce their energy use.
From providing rebates to offset the cost of energy efficiency improvements identified during a DOE Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) Save Energy Now energy assessment, to forming collaborative programs that offer training and access to resources—including those offered by ITP—utility companies are actively engaged in improving the efficiency of their industrial customers.
Three new ITP case studies featured in this article highlight successful partnerships that have resulted in reduced energy use and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and lowered costs for everyone involved. The first two case studies describe how Owens Corning and Alliant Techsystems, Inc., companies with strong corporate energy management programs, took advantage of utility incentives and ITP resources such as energy assessments and software tools to improve their plant's energy efficiency. The third case study describes Southern California Gas Company's innovative Industrial End User Program, which was created in order to meet ambitious state-wide energy and emission reduction goals.
Silicon Valley Power Financial Incentives Help Owens Corning Implement Energy Savings Measures
"The DOE assessment at the Owens Corning plant gave us a valuable blueprint of tools and methodologies that Silicon Valley Power can apply to analyze other key industrial accounts."
Mary Medeiros McEnroe, Silicon Valley Power Public Benefit Program Coordinator
The Owens Corning plant in Santa Clara, California, was the first industrial plant in the United States designed specifically to manufacture insulation. Today, the plant produces 250 million pounds of insulation annually using two electric furnaces, and consumes a significant amount of electricity.
For Silicon Valley Power (SVP), large industrial facilities like the Santa Clara plant are not only important customer loads, but also valuable assets to the community. SVP has used its Customer Directed Rebate program since 1999 to offer incentives to customers for implementing energy efficiency measures. Helping industrial customers use less electricity is important for SVP because it:
- Ensures the economic viability of their customers
- Keeps manufacturing jobs in the community
- Attracts new businesses
- Helps keep power costs low by spreading fixed costs across sectors more evenly
- Enables rising load growth to be met without building more power plants, mitigating the utility's carbon footprint.
Energy efficiency is also important for Owens Corning; each plant has an energy leader who is responsible for the efficiency of the plant's process operations. Energy leaders work closely with local utilities and vendors to implement energy savings ideas. Over a 2-year period, the Santa Clara plant received a Save Energy Now energy assessment from ITP as well as two additional assessments that used ITP software tools and the Save Energy Now methodology.
Recognizing the potential benefits of improving the plant's efficiency, SVP provided approximately $251,000 in incentives to the Santa Clara plant. This catalyzed the implementation of many energy-saving measures in the plant's pumping, fan, and compressed air systems, resulting in annual energy cost savings of $252,000 and a 1.3-year simple payback period.
Rocky Mountain Power's Self-Direction Credit Program Shortens Payback Time for ATK Launch Systems
Alliant Techsystems, Inc. (ATK), the world's foremost producer of solid rocket propulsion systems, has been actively implementing efficiency measures for more than 14 years. ATK's Corporate Energy Plan sets annual cost reduction goals across its U.S. facilities and calls for regular review of the facilities' energy data. The plan also requires the development of onsite energy management plans.
As part of that effort, ATK has been actively involved with ITP:
- A Save Energy Now steam system assessment was conducted at the company's manufacturing facility in Independence, Missouri, in 2006
- DOE's Oregon State University Industrial Assessment Center performed an assessment of ATK's armament systems manufacturing facility in Lewiston, Idaho, in 2004
- ATK cost-shared a plant-wide assessment at its Promontory site near Brigham City, Utah, with DOE and P&E Automation in 2007, identifying more than 20%, or up to $4.3 million in potential annual energy cost savings.
ATK's Promontory site took advantage of energy efficiency incentives offered by the local utility, Rocky Mountain Power, to significantly reduce project payback times. The company applied for Rocky Mountain Power's Self-Direction Credit program, which funds up to 80% of the approved eligible project cost in the form of a credit on the customer's utility bill. The Promontory site received more than $246,000 in incentives to drop the average simple payback time for its lighting upgrades to below 2 years. ATK anticipates the Utah site's total facility upgrades will ultimately qualify for more than $1.6 million in local utility incentives.
For ATK, these programs were able to bridge the divide between an unacceptable payback period and a satisfactory one. Without using the incentives from Rocky Mountain Power, cost-saving measures would likely never have been implemented. Through Rocky Mountain Power's incentives and DOE's cost-shared plant assessments, ATK has saved energy and money, while enabling the utility to avoid costly upgrades, lower its fuel costs, and maintain the power grid, which serves an ever increasing electricity demand.
Southern California Gas Company Industrial End User Program Strengthens Customer Relationships While Improving Efficiency
The Southern California Gas Company's (the Gas Company) multi-faceted Industrial End User program, was created in 2006 as a joint effort between the Gas Company, the California Energy Commission, and ITP to help large industrial customers increase their energy efficiency and in turn reduce their energy use and GHG emissions.
The program was created in response to a joint action plan that was formed in 2005 between the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), California Energy Commission, and California Power Authority to cut GHG emissions and improve energy efficiency in the state. This action plan was driven by the passage of Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 that requires California to reduce its GHG emissions to 1990 levels by 2020, and Executive Order S-3-05, which establishes a GHG emission target designed to bring GHG emissions down to 80% of the 1990 levels by 2050 in the state. As a result, CPUC established a natural gas reduction target of 45.0 trillion Btu per year by 2013. This means that all investor-owned natural gas utilities in California are now tasked with reducing the energy consumption of their customers.
Through the Industrial End User program, plants located in the Gas Company's service area are eligible to:
- Participate in plant or project verification assessments
- Receive custom incentives to help finance the purchase of energy-efficient equipment
- Attend training to learn how to use ITP software tools to identify opportunities to improve energy efficiency and reduce GHG emissions.
In addition, the Industrial End User Program's Energy Resource Center offers Specialist Qualification training in co-sponsorship with ITP, and on-site training at industrial facilities. For example, at the White Wave Foods plant in the City of Industry, California, the program determined that if the plant increased condensate recovery, reduced boiler blowdown, and improved insulation, they could achieve approximately $100,000 in annual energy savings.
The Industrial End User program has led to improved energy efficiency at many industrial facilities in the Gas Company's southern California service area. The program serves as a model for other utilities, both natural gas and electric, consumer- and investor-owned, on how a utility can establish or strengthen a relationship with its key accounts by helping them improve energy efficiency, save money, reduce carbon emissions, and maintain their economic viability.
Ask an Energy Expert: Optimizing Industrial Pumping Systems
Don Casada is a DOE Energy Expert, an authority on industrial pumping systems, and a long-time contributing author to Energy Matters. In this issue, Don outlines some main causes of excess pumping system energy use and describes methods of quantifying opportunities for reducing energy use, including those applicable to municipal water and wastewater applications.
What are some principal causes of excess pumping energy use?
To provide some perspective on the answer to that question, it is useful to resort to the basic equation that expresses electrical energy as a function of system and component parameters:
E = energy, kWh
Q = flow rate, gpm
H = head, ft
T = time, hours
sg = specific gravity, dimensionless
5308 = conversion constant
ηpump = pump efficiency, fraction
ηmotor = motor efficiency, fraction
ηdrive = drive efficiency, fraction
Anything that causes the numerator to be bigger than it needs to be in order to meet the system functional requirements causes excess energy use. Similarly, if less than optimally selected components (pump, motor, and drive) are used, the denominator shrinks and energy use is greater than it would ideally be.
Every type of opportunity to reduce pumping energy can be categorized in the terms of this relation. Ideally, of course, you would have equipment sized to meet the system flow and head needs (without excess of either) while operating at near best efficiency conditions—and you would have controls in place to only run the equipment when it was truly needed.
But this is often not the case. Why not? There are many possible reasons, but let's just list some of the more common factors, which are not altogether unrelated.
- Initial equipment specification and selection occurs before the system is actually operated, of course. Uncertainties in component and system modeling, conservative assumptions to accommodate those uncertainties, addition of margin in the equipment specification to cover future contingencies, and further margin increase "just to be sure" are examples of factors that often lead to installed equipment that is capable of providing considerably more flow rate or head than the system really requires.
- When the actual system requirement is considerably different than the pump capability, the pumping system efficiency will inherently suffer (and, it might be noted, so will reliability).
- Things do change with time, which is one of the reasons that margin is sometimes added in the initial specification/selection process. But when process requirements do change, it is often in unanticipated ways, and the existing equipment may be poorly suited for the new requirements.
- Energy costs frequently account for over three-fourths of the life-cycle ownership cost, but this is often unrecognized and therefore not factored into purchasing or other decision-making processes.
How should one go about identifying and quantifying pumping-related energy opportunities?
Each individual plant, of course, has its own unique circumstances, so there is no single pattern that is best for all. That said, the approach endorsed by DOE has proven to be broadly effective, particularly for process industry applications. For those who have attended either a Pumping System Assessment Tool (PSAT) training or listened in on the free DOE-sponsored PSAT Webcasts which are held on roughly a monthly basis, this will be familiar territory.
The endorsed method implicitly recognizes that not all pumping systems are equal—and neither are the opportunities for improvement. The overall energy consumption is even more skewed toward the larger equipment than common sense would suggest. As an example, see Figure 1, which shows the population and installed power as a function of pump motor size at a large paper plant in Maine . This profile is very similar to one from a DOE-sponsored study of the nation's industrial motor population . The point to be drawn from this graph is that the larger equipment uses a disproportionate fraction of the overall plant energy (e.g., equipment that is 100 hp and greater represents 20% of the population, but accounts for 85% of the connected load). So, our common sense intuition to focus on larger equipment is actually understated—it is really important to look at the big stuff—which generally runs a lot.
A second element in the DOE-endorsed method is to focus on centrifugal pump applications where the pump is driven by fixed speed motors (as opposed to adjustable speed drives), which exhibit one or more of the following symptoms:
- Throttle valve-controlled systems
- Pump bypass (recirculation) line normally open
- Multiple parallel pump system with same number of pumps always operating
- Constant pump operation in a batch environment or frequent cycle batch operation in a continuous process
- Cavitation noise (at pump or elsewhere in the system)
- High system maintenance
- Systems that have undergone change in function or extent of demand.
The third and final element, which allows quantification of the opportunity, involves measurements of fluid and electrical parameters, including flow rate, pressures, and motor power (or current as a proxy). These are not always readily available, and use of temporary test equipment may be required. And getting the data may be easier said than done—it can be a challenging job even for experienced field hands. The PSAT workshop currently devotes time to practical issues involving field measurements, but this is a subject that merits considerably more attention in the training realm.
PSAT is certainly not the only means to help one quantify opportunities, but that is exactly what it is geared toward doing, and in the author's quite biased judgment, does it well, thanks to excellent algorithms developed by pump manufacturer representatives involved in the Hydraulic Institute standards program. PSAT does not, however, identify solutions. Its goal is to help the user understand if the potential savings merit the time to investigate solution alternatives.
It should be noted here that an essential element of using PSAT, or any other method to quantify opportunities, is to be sure that the true system functional requirements are always kept in mind. Simply assuming that the current operation is, by definition, equal to what is truly required, can result in the dominant savings potential being missed.
Are there important opportunities that don't fit in the standard symptoms list?
There definitely are energy and/or energy cost-reduction opportunities that are not flagged by the standard prescreening process, which is primarily geared toward process industry. One specific, very important pump-using community that merits a bit different take is the municipal water and wastewater industry. Without going into the reasons why (lack of space), here are some specific things that the author and colleagues have found to be useful to consider in municipal applications:
- If the station pays a demand charge (and most do), does it have a poor load factor? If so, look for ways to better match the equipment to normal needs and to avoid situations where equipment that runs for relatively short periods—such as filter backwash pumps—operate concurrently with major loads, thereby setting the demand peak.
- On the flip side, does the municipality have extensive storage capacity that could potentially allow it to shift loads to times when electrical rates are lower? If so, and if the rate differential is sufficient, changes in operational patterns can yield good energy cost savings (note: this will NOT reduce energy consumption; it is more likely to actually increase it).
- In wastewater plants, are return activated sludge and aeration flows being adjusted to match the true system needs? If not, control schemes with appropriate strategies, including adjustable speed drives and/or on-off operation can be very helpful.
- Data used in Figure 1 is courtesy of Tim Crocker, Powerhouse Superintendent, Domtar Woodland plant.
- United States Industrial Electric Motor Systems Market Opportunities Assessment, by Xenergy, Inc., for the U.S. Department of Energy and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, available for free download (PDF 6.6 MB).
- Improving Pumping System Performance: A Sourcebook for Industry (PDF 3.1 MB).
- Pumping system tip sheets.
Don Casada is Consulting Engineer with Diagnostic Solutions, LLC in Knoxville, Tennessee, and a DOE Energy Expert. He specializes in measurement and evaluation of pumping systems for energy, productivity, and reliability improvements, and has led pumping system assessments at more than 125 industrial facilities. Don is the author and programmer of DOE's Pumping System Assessment Tool (PSAT). He is also the developer of the associated PSAT end-user and PSAT Qualified Specialist (QS) training curricula, and serves as the lead QS instructor for DOE. He holds six patents involving valves and rotating machinery. In his spare time, Don enjoys spending time in the backcountry of his native Great Smoky Mountains.
Save the Date for These Exciting Energy Conferences!
Mark your calendar for these upcoming national industrial energy conferences, co-sponsored by DOE's Industrial Technologies Program (ITP)! These events feature multi-track sessions, workshops, technology expos, and more to help industrial energy professionals assess the full range of potential energy solutions available.
Industrial Energy Technology Conference
- Industrial innovations
- Energy management strategies
- Energy, waste, and emission reduction programs
- The latest in state and federal programs affecting industry.
Don't miss the popular Energy Manager's Workshop held on May 12, which will provide energy management training and resources for industrial plant personnel.
Also during this event, ITP will recognize local manufacturing companies for implementing recommendations identified during Save Energy Now energy assessments and achieving significant energy savings.
Visit the IETC Web site to learn more and register.
West Coast Energy Management Congress
The West Coast Energy Management Congress (EMC) on June 10-11, 2009, in Long Beach, California, is the largest energy conference and technology expo on the U.S. west coast specifically for business, industrial, and institutional energy users. Presented by the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE), the agenda includes a 2-day, multi-track conference program, AEE seminars, free workshops, and an exhibit hall and showcase.
The U.S. Department of Energy is a Government Leader for this event, which will feature energy supply and alternative energy options, project implementation strategies, and new technologies for industrial energy users. ITP conference sessions focus on Save Energy Now energy assessments and Industrial Assessment Centers (Partnerships-Track 5). ITP will also recognize companies at the event for implementing energy savings identified in a Save Energy Now energy assessment.
Register by May 29, 2009, and receive DOE's reduced rate!
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