Delivering Savings, no Matter the Energy IntensityBy Cas Biekmann | Tue, 07/14/2020 - 12:00
Q: What is the value of the company’s energy management system, including integrated smart technology?
A: The company sees potential in automation of energy management systems while utilizing improved digital platforms. I think energy management systems are already quite advanced. The question is how do we empower them to use the digital tools that have already proven to be quite successful in their applications.
Being able to work with the systems from a distance is a major added value, especially in times of crisis. The company believes in the concept that the cleanest and most profitable energy is that which is not consumed in the first place. Other than the benefits of energy efficiency, a good energy management system leads to optimization of manufacturing processes. If you apply an energy management system and enhance it with a digital platform, you get enhanced sustainability and clean energy, as well as notable improvements in production processes. This in turn leads to higher profits, as well as greater cash flows because the costs have decreased.
Q: How do you convince clients to look into their energy efficiency?
A: We focus on the benefits that reduced energy use brings. For example, we presented our product to a factory that produces corn-based flour, and we controlled the air flow that enters the combustion chamber during the drying process. Our procedure works by visiting the company, becoming familiar with the entire production process and finding out which measures they can adhere to their energy efficiency processes. Based on the information we acquire we then tailor specific solutions.
COVID-19 has not slowed down our work on this front as the food and beverages industry is essential. The staff members who work in the factory take sanitary precautions into account by connecting control and monitoring elements. As a result, the engineering process toward a better efficiency is managed from a distance. This makes it quite an efficient and safe process, for our staff and for our client’s employees.
The implementation of an energy efficiency system based on Industry 4.0 concepts benefits the design of performance indicators in real time. It helps to elaborate the improvement of operational processes, as well as to plan major maintenance or replace obsolete equipment. It also generates energy performance improvements based on new operational processes and a higher profitability for the company. This in turn, creates an improved cash flow for the company.
A major success story was achieved in a plant where a drying line was present. Here, we improved the company’s strategy to gain better control over the temperature and an excess of air in the air-fuel ratio of the combustion process. A measurement system is attached to the installation, which monitors and analyzes data that benefits the implementation of a continuous improvement system for the pilot line, as well as other production lines. It could work for the entire factory bringing a higher value and maximizing savings and efficiency.
The system uses control functions based on IoT. It fosters a decrease in energy use of more that 75 percent, and a diminished use of fossil fuels of 30 percent. As a result, 500 tons of CO2 were no longer emitted. By developing mathematical algorithms that apply to other production lines, huge benefits have become apparent, such as ROIs generated in one year, instead of the projected two and a half years. Here, you can see the advantages of taking this approach. It is not just about the systems and the equipment, but how to generate a strategy that will solve issues.
Q: Where does the company see opportunities, and how can its clients generate benefits from increased energy efficiency?
A: We consider the food and beverages sector to be an opportunity for us. Our digital platform, RAMADASA 4.0, has reached substantial efficiency, ensuring the production of food and beverages functions with higher efficiency during the pandemic.
All technologies associated with Industry 4.0, such as machine learning, IoT and blockchain, can be utilized to reduce carbon emissions, as they make energy processes more efficient through a lower use of energy. I think it is important to communicate the success that has been achieved to bolster greater market demand for these products. People need to realize the tangible benefits of installing tech such as RAMADASA 4.0 at their companies.
Q: What goals do you have for Ramadasa this year?
A: Our goal is continuing improving our digital platform to exceed our customer expectations. We want to help clients to be efficient, and to manage relevant operations information such as obtain historical trend charts, an efficient dashboard, numerical integration graphs and scatter plots concerning energy intensity. These are all variables that can be used in the decision-making process in real time. We see as an opportunity to help clients to proactively manage their dry process controlling relevant variables of performance, as well as to implement heat recovery initiatives with an important savings to achieve. We are having very promising results. and we believe our consulting services plus our success stories will convince our current and potential clients of the benefits we can offer them.
RAMADASA is a Mexican business consulting firm specialized in energy consumption management and collaborative engineering. It focuses on driving efficient performance for the design and purchase of its clients’ manufacturing infrastructure.