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Industrial Newsbriefs

January 2012

Welcome to this edition of Industrial Newsbriefs, produced by the Washington State University Extension Energy Program, and sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). Please forward this issue to those of your colleagues interested in industrial energy efficiency. View archive 

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2012 Northwest Industrial Energy Efficiency Summit
January 18, 2012, Portland, Oregon
There is still time to register for the 4th annual Northwest Energy Efficiency Summit taking place on January 18, 2012, in Portland. This year's agenda will focus on success stories from industry, and include great applications of existing and cutting-edge technologies, O & M opportunities, the power of executive engagement, project economics, creating energy efficiency across multi-plant organizations and in small-size companies, and leveraging third party resources to achieve energy efficiency.
Note: Sponsorships are going fast, but a limited number are still available. For more information, contact Tawnia Linde at NWFPA at 503-327-2212 or


"Food waste: a new fuel for CHP in the US," published in October 2011 in Cogeneration & On-Site Power Production, discusses the relatively new interest in avoiding the hauling and environmental costs associated with landfilling. This has resulted in increased conversion of waste food to energy in the both the U.S. and Canada, particularly for use in combined heat and power (CHP) settings. The article includes a sidebar, "Food Waste, Lost Energy, Lost Money."

"Quad-Generation Puts the Fizz into Coca-Cola" was written by Jens Rupp, Sustainability Manager, Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company, Switzerland. Tri-generation would describe a system where power generated by (natural) gas turbines releases heat which is captured to produce hot and chilled water for various plant uses. In quad-generation, released carbon dioxide is recovered and purified to, in this case, sodium bicarbonate. This article appeared in the September-October issue of Cogeneration & On-Site Power Production.

Compressed Air

Compressed Air Best Practices

The December 2011 edition of Compressed Air Best Practices is now available for download. This month's issue features articles about control storage, compressed air audit tips, sustainability case studies, and more, including a resource section for energy engineers.

Before the audit: compressed air self-check

"Five Things to Check Before You Commit to a Compressed Air Audit," published December 21, 2011, in Sustainable Plant, explains how to perform a preliminary assessment of your compressed air system prior to obtaining a professional audit. The data gathered from a self-assessment can be used to improve and expedite a professional audit, or in some cases, eliminate the need for a professional audit altogether.

Energy Management

Aligning energy goals for short and long term success

"Close the Disconnection between Short and Long Term Energy Goals," published December 21, 2011, in Sustainable Plant, examines the misalignment which is often present between short- and long-term energy management planning. The author laments that short term planning frequently places too much emphasis on reducing immediate costs, thereby sabotaging longer term energy and greenhouse gas reduction targets which require investment.


The following four articles were published in the November 2011 issue of Industrial Heating:

"Clean-Steel Practices in the Melt Shop," by Chuck Fryman, Ellwood Quality Steels, discusses the practices appropriate to the type of steel that is considered "clean" because it is low in residual elements (inclusions). The author discusses the kinds of inclusions that need to be removed and how to accomplish that.

"Heat Treatment is a Lifesaver," by staff, is a basic discussion of the technology; it, additionally, provides interesting historical information.

"Low-Temperature Vacuum Heat-Treatment Processes" was written by Daniel H. Herring, President of the Herring Group Inc. Five kinds of applications appropriate for this technology are listed, as are nine types of materials that respond well to low-temperature vacuum heat treating. The design of vacuum furnaces is also considered.

"Microstructure of Nitrided Steels," by George F. Vander Voort, Consultant, Struers Inc. is a discussion of nitriding, the unique surface-hardening technique. The author considers errors in the literature on the microstructure of nitrided steels and makes corrections.


Benefits and applications of variable speed drives

A realistic view of the benefits and applications of variable speed drives is provided in "VSD Stands for Very Significant Dividend," published in September 2011 at A variety of examples from industrial facilities and VSD equipment manufacturers are provided.


Top ten developments in industrial energy efficiency in 2011

To mark the end of 2011, the Alliance to Save Energy (ASE) compiled a list of what they consider to be the top ten most significant and newsworthy events relating to industrial energy efficiency in the year 2011. Included are the ISO 50001 standard; the transition from the Save Energy Now LEADER program into the Better Buildings/Better Plants Program; and the recent federal legislation to promote CHP. View the entire list in "Top Developments in Industrial Energy Efficiency in 2011," published December 21, 2011, on the ASE website.

Policy and Legislation

ITP is now AMO

The U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO), formerly known as the Industrial Technologies Program (ITP), announced its name change and mission adjustment on December 6, 2011. As part of the change, the Save Energy Now LEADER program was incorporated into the Better Buildings Program, and is now referred to as the Better Buildings, Better Plants Program. For information on this and other recent changes, see the press release, or visit the revised AMO website.

Industrial Assessment Center interactive map

The US Department of Energy (DOE) recently released an interactive map which displays state-by-state and center-by-center data about DOE Industrial Assessment Center (IAC) activities. Displayed information includes the number of assessments, costs for implementation, the number of recommendations made and implemented, and the average yearly savings after implementation.


Oregon plant to convert farm, food processing waste to energy

A new biorefinery in Boardman, Oregon, will process onion, potato, and other agricultural waste from local farms and food processors. According to Novus Energy CEO Joe Burke, the plant will produce methane gas in four or five days, and convert 90 percent of the feedstock to methane gas, liquid fertilizer, water, and a dry soil supplement. For information, see "Tim Hopkins Energy Start-up Ready for Major Launch," published December 4, 2011, in the Star Tribune.


A two-part article published in Sustainable Plant, "Save Energy in Water Systems," provides tips for the efficient operation and maintenance of water systems in industrial plants.

Part 1, published December 5, 2011, focuses on hot water; tips are provided for recovering waste heat, reducing heat loss from pipes, and saving energy with simple equipment upgrades.

Part 2, published January 2, 2012, covers water systems used for cooling. Suggested measures include keeping warm and hot water out of the cooling water cycle, keeping water circulation to a minimum, and optimizing efficiency with staged cooling and automated controls.


Pacific Northwest

Northwest Food Manufacturing & Packaging Expo and Conference
January 15-18, 2012, Portland, Oregon
This annual event is truly the right place to connect with the right people within the food manufacturing industry. If it's important to you today, we'll be explaining, discussing or demonstrating it. Plus you'll have plenty of time for networking, collaboration and to explore the Expo Hall without the crowds and cavernous halls of national shows. Sized right to attract premier food processing industry experts and exhibitors, it is the largest regional food manufacturing trade show in North America.

Northwest Industrial Energy Efficiency Summit
January 18, 2012, Portland, Oregon
For Northwest industry, efficiency isn't a buzzword. It's how manufacturers gain and maintain a competitive advantage — by reducing costs, improving productivity and using limited resources wisely. Efficiency can be the different between surviving and thriving. The focus of the fourth annual Northwest Industrial Energy Efficiency Summit will again be "industry sharing knowledge with industry." Sessions will feature energy experts and case studies that discuss actions taken by the presenting industrial companies. The topics will include great applications of existing technologies, applications of cutting-edge technologies, O & M opportunities, the power of executive engagement, project economics, creating energy efficiency across a multi-plant organization, creating energy efficiency in small-size companies, and leveraging third party resources to achieve energy efficiency.

Pacific West Biomass Conference and Trade Show
January 16-18, 2012, San Francisco, California
With an exclusive focus on biomass utilization in California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Nevada, the Pacific West Biomass Conference & Trade Show is the largest event of its kind in the world. The mainland Pacific West—from Southern California to British Columbia—is home to dozens of biomass power plants, advanced biofuels startups, research hubs and vital industry associations. This event brings together area producers of biomass-derived electricity, industrial heat and power with waste generators, municipal leaders, utility executives, technology providers, equipment manufacturers, investors, policy makers and more.

Energy Smart Industrial: All Energy Project Manager Meeting
Tuesday, January 17, 2012, Portland, Oregon
This half-day event is BPA's first annual All Energy Project Manager (EPM) Meeting. It is planned to be a networking session for EPMs to get together and share EPM "best practices," discuss project measurement and verifications, allow for informal discussions and breakouts on issues you've encountered, as well as cover specific technologies.

PGE Series: Compressed Air Systems
February 2, 2012, Wilsonville, Oregon
This free half-day seminar provides an overview of how compressed air systems work and practical advice about making the most of your compressed air system investment. Compressed air systems can be one of the largest energy consumers in your facility. Learn how to start saving energy and money today. See our syllabus (PDF) for additional details.

Compressed Air Challenge - Level 1
February 8, 2012, Kennewick, Washington
Facility engineers, operators and maintenance staff, energy managers, and anyone interested in improving industrial compressed air system performance are invited to this one-day introductory course designed to teach attendees how to achieve 15 - 25% cost savings through more effective production and use of compressed air. Participants will learn how to calculate the energy cost of compressed air in their facility, improve compressed air system efficiency and reliability, identify inappropriate uses of compressed air, establish a baseline by which they can measure improvements in compressed air performance and efficiency, match system supply to actual production requirements for pressure and flow, find and fix leaks, establish a leak prevention program, and better control compressed air to improve productivity and profitability.

PGE Series: Industrial Fan Systems
February 16, 2012, Wilsonville, Oregon
This half-day free seminar provides an overview of the principles of industrial fan, blower, and dust collection systems and how to save energy without reducing production. See our syllabus (PDF) for additional details.

PGE Series: Industrial Pump Systems
February 17, 2012, Wilsonville, Oregon
This free half-day seminar provides an understanding of motors, pumps and variable-speed drives that can reduce energy use and improve process control in systems with varying loads. See our syllabus (PDF) for additional details.

Other Events, Trainings, and Webinars

Tuesday Webcast for Industry: Key Energy-Saving Activities for Smaller Facilities
January 10. 2012, 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM PST
Many small- to medium-sized manufacturers do not have the access to the resources and capital that larger corporations enjoy. This Webcast will focus on key energy-saving activities that small- to medium-sized manufacturers can implement in their facilities. The webcast will highlight strategies such as implementing no-cost energy saving measures, such as turning off machines and shutting down process operations when not needed; targeting "low-hanging" fruit; and building a business case for projects that require capital.

IEE & CHP Webinar #1: U.S. EPA Regulations and CHP
January 17, 2012
Webinar participants will learn the impacts of a suite of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rules on CHP implementation and operation. Regulations discussed will include air (Mercury and Air Toxics Standards and the Cross-State Air Pollution rule), water/solid waste (Cooling Water Intake Structures and Coal Combustion Residuals rules), and industrial/commercial/institutional boilers (National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants).

California League of Food Processors 2012 Expo & Showcase
January 31-February 1, 2012, Sacramento, California
Features tradeshow exhibits, pre-Expo workshop, and information tracks, including two sessions focused on utility energy efficiency initiatives for food processors, and energy best practices.

IEE & CHP Webinar #2: Showcasing Model Utility IEE Programs
February 7, 2012
During this Webinar, utilities that have implemented successful energy efficiency programs for industrial customers will showcase their design and implementation approaches to other utilities, industrial customers, and key stakeholders.

IEE & CHP Webinar #3: Elevating IEE Regulatory Issues for Commissioners
March 6, 2012
This Webinar will examine regulatory issues that impact utility incentive programs, such as flexibility and consistency in offerings, free-ridership, and risk mitigation techniques. Utility, commission, and industrial customer viewpoints will be shared.

UW-Madison Engineering Professional Development Ammonia Refrigeration Courses
Various dates beginning January 2012
Madison, Wisconsin or on-site
The University of Wisconsin – Madison Engineering Professional Development (EPD) is offering courses which provide comprehensive coverage of all aspects of ammonia refrigeration systems. Courses focus on specific topics, including ammonia system safety, energy efficiency, process hazard analysis, compliance auditing, mechanical integrity, piping, and design. EPD can deliver courses on-site and tailor programs to meet individual needs.

Fundamentals of Compressed Air Systems - Web Edition (4-part Series)
Mondays, February 28 – March 14, 1:30 – 3:30 PST
This web-based version of the popular Fundamentals of Compressed Air Systems training uses an interactive format that enables the instructor to diagram examples, give pop quizzes and answer students' questions in real time. The curriculum will be organized into four 2-hour sessions.

Superior Energy Performance and ISO 50001: How Superior Energy Performance will Help Your Plant Implement ISO 50001
Webcast, March 13, 2012, 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM PST
This webcast will focus on how Superior Energy Performance will assist U.S. Industry in implementing ISO 50001, the International Standards Organization's (ISO) international energy management standard. This standard provides industry with a framework for energy management, assists industry with the reduction of industrial energy intensity, and provides strategies for monitoring and verifying this progress. The presenters will also highlight the U.S. Department of Energy's plans to assist industry with standards implementation.

Steam End User Training – E-Learning
Self-paced online workshop
This course covers the operation of typical steam systems and discusses methods of system efficiency improvement. A brief demonstration of the BestPractices Steam System Tool Suite software is highlighted to help identify and quantify savings from selected potential improvement examples. The training is designed for plant personnel, such as energy managers, steam system supervisors, engineers, and equipment operators, who have steam system responsibilities in industrial and institutional plants.

Steam Systems E-Learning
Self-paced online workshop
This training course will provide an overview of the BestPractices Steam Tool Suite. The training course will begin with a navigational tutorial to guide you on how to move through the three modules. Each training module will demonstrate the capability of one tool and its interactions with the other tools. Interactive quizzes will be used to test your basic understanding of the tools after you complete the course.


For a listing of other upcoming industrial energy efficiency trainings, visit the following websites:

Energy Events Calendar

Northwest Regional Training Calendar

U.S. Department of Energy Industrial Best Practices Training Calendar

Input Requested: Is there something else you would like to see in Industrial Newsbriefs?

If you have thoughts or ideas for what you would like to see in this publication, please email suggestions to Talia Mathews at . We strive to keep this publication as useful and relevant as possible to you, our readers.

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