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Technology park companies drive down electricity costs

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Following a successful trial at the Corus Stocksbridge site, two companies based at the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP) in Rotherham are collaborating to provide industry with a system designed to cut costs and make lower carbon manufacturing processes a reality.

Sensdata and Drive Management Systems (DMS) are developing a monitoring system that enables the reduction of plant downtime, energy wastage and CO2 emissions. The SensSlip System automatically monitors slippage in drive belts, which are widely used in manufacturing equipment.

In a trial at the Corus facility, the system revealed that thousands of pounds in energy costs could be saved.

Energy Services Engineer at Corus, Chris Spenceley said: “We have a number of heat treatment furnaces at the site with combustion air and fume extraction fans, which are powered by large motors. We therefore have lots of vee-belts.

“In critical areas we can’t afford them to fail, and therefore we change the belts twice a year during planned shut downs.”

In one sample period of monitoring a belt, over four days of continuous running, Sensdata confirmed the transmission drive was only running at times at 82% efficiency. This could equate to more than £9,000 of energy wastage. Accepted industry parameters are that vee-belts should provide peak efficiency of between 95-98% when first installed.

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