Commercial and Industrial Applications

Energy efficiency in heating systems in industry and production

Many industrial production processes and methods require large quantities of process heat and this usually entails considerable energy costs for the businesses. Comprehensive energy optimisation of a heating system can considerably reduce energy consumption and costs for combustion plants, on average by 15%. Such energy efficiency measures are highly cost-effective and generally pay for themselves within one to four years.

Various sources of energy are used to generate process heat (for example electricity, oil and gas); there are also very different ways of transporting the process heat (as warm water/hot water, as steam or as hot air), and it is required in a whole range of temperatures.

System optimisation

Measures for increasing energy efficiency in a heating system should always be regarded as part of the optimisation of the complete system because the greatest increases in energy efficiency can be achieved by matching all the components to one another and optimising the plant’s control systems.

The first step should be to carry out a detailed actual analysis of the system’s energy consumption, its heating demand and its individual system components. Then the energy efficiency of the individual components should be checked so that any old components, such as burners, can be replaced if necessary. Further savings can be achieved by optimising the combustion plant’s control systems. When constructing new systems, attention should be paid from the outset to the energy efficiency of the components and of the overall system.

1. Minimise demand and losses

Before optimising the individual components of a heating system, steps should first of all be taken to minimise heating demand and losses. Efficiency can be raised by 10 to 15 percent just by using warm water instead of steam. In many cases, reducing the temperature of the supply medium makes it possible to use heat recovery and cogeneration to reduce energy requirements still further. Moreover, the thermal insulation on heat generators, pipe work and any heat stores should be checked and, if necessary, repaired.

2. Use heat recovery

Heat recovery measures maximise the efficiency of the overall system and thus increase its energy efficiency. Heat potential should be used locally and as directly as possible. Waste heat may be put to further use for heating process water, for water heating, for preheating combustion and drying air or as space heating.

3. Use energy-efficient components

Even when energy-efficient components are used, the goal should always be to optimise the entire system. This is achieved by effectively matching all new and existing components to one another. Modulating (controllable) burners may be used over extensive partial load ranges. They are substantially more efficient than burners which are switched on and off individually. Flue gas temperatures and energy consumption can be reduced thanks to boilers with large heat exchange areas. Speed-controlled drive motors for forced-draught burners and pumps enable considerable savings in energy consumption.

4. Optimise control systems

Combustion plants should in principle be designed on the basis of the actual heating demand. For instance, a multi-boiler control system ensures that only the necessary number of boilers is switched on in accordance with requirements. If a flue gas sensor control system is installed, the flue gas composition can be continuously measured. Air feed is controlled on the basis of the optimum oxygen (O2) content in the flue gas. Reducing the O2 content by just one percent results, depending on the age of the system, in a 0.5 to 1% improvement in efficiency. Energy consumption can be further reduced by monitoring and controlling further combustion parameters such as CO content, flue gas temperature, soot index or combustion chamber pressure and by installing automatic flue gas or combustion dampers.

Commercial and Industrial Applications
Commercial and Industrial Applications
Commercial and Industrial Applications
Commercial and Industrial Applications
Commercial and Industrial Applications
Commercial and Industrial Applications