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Industrial Newsbriefs

November 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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Compressed Air

Compressed Air Best Practices

The October 2012 edition of Compressed Air Best Practices is now available for download; this issue's focus is Food Processing. Article topics include a food processing plant which saved over $100,000 per year in energy costs; food-industry systems assessments, oil-free air compressor systems; desiccant air dryer reliability; and pressure-flow control.

Energy Management

Series examines significance of ISO 50001

A three-part series by the Alliance to Save Energy (ASE) examines the significance of ISO 50001 for utilities, OEMs, and supply chains. The first widespread international standard for managing energy use, ISO 50001 facilitates the successful incorporation of energy management practices into organizations and systems through policy development, goal-setting, measurement, and review. "ISO 50001: Utility Significance" was published July 30, 2012; "ISO 50001: OEM Engagement" was published August 29, 2012; and "Supply Chains: The Rest of the Iceberg" was published September 26, 2012.

A sneak peak at ISO 50001 guidance documents

While many organizations have adopted and successfully implemented ISO 50001, certain aspects of the standard would be more easily interpreted with further guidance. "ISO 50001: Guidance Documents Are on the Way," published September 27, 2012, on the Alliance to Save Energy website, describes companion guidance documents which will address select technical and application details in the standard. The documents, currently under development by the ISO technical committee and associated working groups, are expected to be released by early 2014.

Energy efficiency successes at Nissan USA

A profile contained in the report published by ACEEE in October 2012, Energy Efficiency Job Creation: Real World Experiences, describes how Nissan's factories in North America were able to reduce their overall energy use by over 30% by implementing a host of energy efficiency measures. The improvements included an upgrade to variable frequency drives (VFDs), sub-metering and monitoring, chiller upgrades and replacements, lighting upgrades, and more. Nissan was one of six case studies in the report, which emphasizes the importance of energy efficiency policies and initiatives for the U.S. economy.


Repair or replace?

"How Energy Efficiency Affects the Motor Repair-Replace Decision," published October 22, 2012, in, describes a process for determining whether a malfunctioning motor should be repaired or replaced. Both cost effectiveness and the overall energy efficiency of the repaired or replaced motor are considered. Included are a decision-making flow chart, and links to further resources.

New motor system for catalytic cracking

"Plant Upgrades Improve Efficiency at Midwest Refinery," by Dave DePasquale, Seimens Industry, Inc., is a case study published in the September 2012 issue of Pumps & Systems. Cracking is used to divide hydrocarbon chains into smaller units for the refinery to make additional types of products. Upgrades to the refinery's catalytic cracking units (CCUs) and the energy efficiencies gained are described; the upgrades include redesigned motors connected to variable frequency drives for greater flexibility.

Policy and Legislation

Funds awarded for advanced manufacturing

On October 9, 2012, the Obama administration announced $20 million in awards for public-private partnerships through the Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge, a multi-agency grant process to support advanced manufacturing at the local level. Recipients include Innovations in Advanced Materials and Metals, a project of the Columbia River Economic Development Council, and Impact Washington. For details, read the press release at

Utilities, CHP, and Policy

"Why Utilities Are an Essential Partner for a Strong CHP Future" was published October 18, 2012, as a follow-up to the September 2012 ACEEE white paper, Coal Retirements and the CHP Investment Opportunity. This article examines feedback received on the white paper, discusses the importance of utilities in the adoption of CHP, and emphasizes the role of policy in the encouragement of utility involvement.

Policy key to CHP's success

Combined Heat and Power (CHP) holds great promise for the recovery of waste heat in industrial settings, but barriers to adoption can prevent the technology's spread and adoption. Governmental policy, particularly at the state level, can reduce these barriers, by facilitating not only the CHP installation itself, but also by providing incentives and streamlining processes for interconnection and permitting. "Policy's Role in Combined Heat and Power Deployment," published September 2012, at, describes policy changes being made in some states to catalyze the development of CHP.

Industrial efficiency investment matters

In October 2012, The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) released a report, Understanding Industrial Investment Decisions, which examines the dynamics of capital investment that drive industrial energy use and competitiveness. The report is intended to assist in the collaboration of program administrators and industry managers to lock in gains in industrial energy efficiency. A summary of the report can be found in "As the Economy Recovers, the Stars Align for Investment in Industrial Energy Efficiency," published October 25, 2012, at


"Watergy" saves both water and energy

Achieving Energy Efficiency in Water Supply & Wastewater Treatment Utilities through Watergy Strategies,released in September 2012 by the Alliance to Save Energy, describes the Alliance's Watergy program, an effort to simultaneously improve both water efficiency and energy efficiency in water and wastewater treatment systems. The Alliance found that significant energy performance improvements can result from the strategy.

The following two articles were published in the September 2012 issue of Power; they show important connections between water and power production:

"Water and Power: Will Your Next Power Plant Make Both?" was written by David G. Daniels, M&M Engineering Associates Inc. Some communities in the U.S. and in other parts of the world are now, or are soon to be, short of fresh water. Two technologies are employed to desalinate seawater: seawater reverse osmosis, the technology of choice in the U.S., and thermal distillation, which is fairly common in large-scale projects in some other countries. The author describes both, but mainly emphasizes the viability of thermal distillation, which uses a power plant's waste heat, as an option for this country. 

"Water Conservation Options for Power Generation Facilities" was authored by Kent D. Zammit, Electric Power Research Institute. Power plants are large users of freshwater, and water can be in short supply and expensive. The author lists and describes four strategies for reducing water use in power generation and discusses water conservation options for both new and existing plants.


Pacific Northwest

PGE Seminar: Chilled Water Systems
November 13, 2012, Wilsonville, Oregon
This half-day seminar focuses on chilled water systems in large commercial buildings and industrial facilities, including high tech and data centers. Working together, operating staff and facility engineers will learn about opportunities to control energy costs and improve efficiency. Free to PGE commercial and industrial customers. Others may attend based on space; fee will apply.

Washington Future Energy Conference: The Business of Renewable Energy and Efficiency
November 14, 2012, Seattle, Washington (day-ahead programs November 13)
Returning for its third year, and again incorporating the Washington State Energy Summit,
this is the state's signature clean energy event of the year, bringing together members of the energy
industry, energy project hosts, and users of energy services. The conference will include five sections: Energy in Context; The Business of Renewable Energy; The Business of Energy Efficiency; Transportation Innovation; and Industry Showcase. Day-ahead programs include the Bioenergy Research Symposium, Natural Gas and Washington, and the Washington Smart Grid Forum (see descriptions above).

PGE Seminar: Ammonia Refrigeration Systems
November 14, 2012, Wilsonville, Oregon
This free half-day seminar provides information on how to reduce energy use, lower operating costs and improve refrigeration system reliability. The instructor is a highly qualified industry expert who will review basic industrial refrigeration concepts and provide a system overview including typical industrial refrigeration practice, applications, equipment, and configurations. Free to PGE commercial and industrial customers. Others may attend based on space; fee will apply.

PGE Seminar: Compressed Air Systems
November 15, 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. Free to PGE commercial and industrial customers. Others may attend based on space; fee will apply.

Adjustable Speed Drive Applications and Energy Efficiency
November 15, 2012, Yakima, Washington
This course addresses the choices available and relevant issues regarding the use of adjustable speed drives (ASD) with electric motors, and demonstrates the energy cost savings and other benefits made possible by this technology. In this course we explore how adjustable speed drives work and ways to assess the savings. Variable frequency drives (VFD) are the most common speed control method and is the major focus of the course content which will cover the benefits of pulse width modulation technology and well as discovering and mitigating harmful electromagnetic interference that can cause motor failure. Additional information on evaluating and specifying VFDs is provided. This course is coordinated by the NEEA Industrial Training project and is sponsored by Pacific Power, Avista, Bonneville Power Administration, Washington State University Energy Program, and Northwest Food Processors Association.

Pumping Systems Optimization
November 27, 2012, Bellevue, Washington
Did you know that the average pumping system efficiency is 40% or less? When pumping systems are not optimized for best efficiency, they will drain your company's profitably with higher energy and maintenance costs, shorter mean time between repairs, more CO2 emissions and a less reliable system overall.  This course will show how the variable speed drive can save power by slowing down pump speed, which will save energy and reduce cost in the process. With the system running more efficiently, maintenance and operating costs will go down and the mean time between repairs will improve. This training is coordinated by NEEA Industrial Training Project and sponsored by Puget Sound Energy, City of Port Angeles, Grays Harbor PUD, Seattle City Light, Snohomish County PUD, Tacoma Power, Bonneville Power Administration, Washington State University Energy Program, and Northwest Food Processors Association.

Motor Systems Management
December 6, 2012, Lebanon, Oregon
Motors use more than half of all electricity. Their inefficiencies contribute significantly to expensive peak demand. Efficient motors, optimized controls, improved component sizing and repair, better transmission hardware, and more comprehensive motor monitoring and maintenance could cut U.S. electricity demand by 27% to 40%, save motor users and utilities billions of dollars, reduce pollutant emissions, and enhance productivity. This is training is coordinated by NEEA Industrial Training and sponsored by Pacific Power, Energy Trust of Oregon, Portland General Electric Bonneville Power Administration, Northwest Food Processors Association, and Washington State University Energy Program.

Energy Management: Introduction to Best Practices
December 11, 2012, Moses Lake, Washington
Register by November 9.
Gain the basic tools that every company needs to manage energy as a controllable cost. Understand energy management as a systematic approach to monitor, control, and conserve energy, and learn how energy management is integral to reducing operating costs. You will leave this training with information that will help you effectively implement an energy management system at your company.

Energy Management: Introduction to Best Practices
December 13, 2012, Twin Falls, Idaho
Register by November 29th.
Gain the basic tools that every company needs to manage energy as a controllable cost. Understand energy management as a systematic approach to monitor, control, and conserve energy, and learn how energy management is integral to reducing operating costs. You will leave this training with information that will help you effectively implement an energy management system at your company.

5th Annual Northwest Industrial Energy Efficiency Summit
January 16, 2013, Portland, Oregon
The NW Industrial Energy Efficiency Summit is the region's premier gathering of industries and energy interests working to advance northwest industrial competitiveness through energy efficiency. The focus of the fifth annual Summit is industry sharing knowledge with industry. Educational sessions are focused on practical applications of energy efficient technologies in both electricity and natural gas. An afternoon poster session will feature recipients of the Oregon Energy Leaders, and the Washington Industrial Energy Leaders awards. Register today to hear real-life energy savings success stories and challenges presented by energy experts and industry peers. Network with companies that are implementing energy efficiency programs/projects to share and learn from their experiences.

Webinars and Online Courses

Webinar: Energy Auditing and Troubleshooting
November 6, 2012, 1:00-2:00 PM
This webinar will show you how to estimate energy consumption by end use without the need for submetering. We will focus on refrigeration, compressed air end uses, HVAC, lighting, and office equipment. In addition, you will receive audit checklists for energy conservation. Several third-party auditing tools will also be reviewed.

Fundamentals of Compressed Air Systems Webinar
November 6-27, 2012, Tuesdays, 11:00 AM-1:00 PM PST
This web-based workshop is designed to teach facility engineers, operators, and maintenance staff how they can achieve 15-25 percent cost savings through proper operation and controls, system maintenance, and appropriate uses of compressed air. Both the in-person and web-based classes utilize the same basic content and adhere to the CAC's principles of product-neutrality and a focus on the systems approach to managing compressed air.


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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