State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology Jochen Homann handed Dr. Hans-Jürgen Kress, head of the Operational Excellence unite (OPEX) at Evonik Industries the award for taking third place in the International Energy Efficiency Awards 2009 in Hannover. The awards are conferred by the Deutsche Energie-Agentur GmbH (dena) in cooperation with the Deutsche Messe.
The award honors the efficiency innovations that were implemented as part of the Group-wide energy management system. Evonik established so-called Efficient Energy Management (EEM) in its Chemicals Business Area to continuously improve energy efficiency. The system involves applying the experience gained from individual units and sites to the Group as a whole.
One example of an especially successful implementation is the overhauling of a postcombustion unit at the chemical production site in Münchsmünster. All the measures carried out there have led to an annual reduction of almost 9,300 metric tons of CO2 emissions. With a one-time investment totaling €500,000, the Münchsmünster site was able to lower its costs by €680,000 a year. So far Evonik has examined 26 of its 120 chemical sites and has recognized potential saving between 4 and 25 percent of annual energy costs. The company has already implemented 90 of the approximately 250 improvement measures developed during the process.
“With the EEM process, we’re pursuing the goal of improving energy efficiency for the long run at production sites and thus significantly lowering energy costs and greenhouse gases, which are damaging to the environment”, explained Dr. Kress, head of OPEX unit, which manages Efficient Energy Management. “With EEM, every site can use energy as efficiently as is possible with the current state-of-the-art technology. With business unit and site representatives, we’re advancing step-by-step toward an interdisciplinary, multi-step process.” After analyzing the generation, distribution and use of the energy required on site, site employees and the Group’s professional experts are jointly following up the project. The improvements are documented in implementation plans, which make the achieved results of energy efficiency measures available throughout the company.
Evonik employs about 165 persons, the large majority in facilities for the production of cyanuric chloride, at its Münchsmünster site, which is in Bavaria and not far away from the city of Ingolstadt. A thermal postcombustion unit burns the exhaust air produced during the production process by means of auxiliary burners, which prior to introduction of the energy efficiency measure consumed 400 kilograms of natural gas per hour. In a total of four steps, natural gas consumption was reduced by 72.5 percent to just 110 kilograms per hour. Among other things, a shell-and-tube heat exchanger for pre-heating the boiler feed water and a stainless steel chimney flue for lowering the flue gas temperature further were installed. Two turbines were overhauled and operation of the combustion chamber was improved, resulting in a further reduction of energy consumed.