A top-down method assesses plant needs at line, machine and device level.
With plant-wide connectivity and free-flowing energy data, facilities can amp up their energy-saving efforts. There are three basic approaches to implementing standard IP for energy management, depending on your plant’s lifecycle:
- Plant expansion/upgrade
Upgrading or improving an existing operation? Include energy management in your plans by conducting an energy needs assessment within the automation systems. Survey your equipment to understand its current energy monitoring and energy management capabilities to guide the development of possible upgrades.
Enhancements can be as simple as upgrading firmware on variable speed drives. A more strategic approach is to not wait for an expansion or upgrade and to implement a top-down proactive method. This can assess needs from the enterprise or plant perspective and progress through opportunities at line, machine and device levels to develop an incremental plan to make changes that can be justified based on the energy savings with a relatively short payback period.
- New facility
Bring a new manufacturing facility into the automated energy management era by incorporating energy data specifications into the design of plant-wide automation and information systems. To optimize monitoring, analysis and reporting capabilities, engage the entire facility supply chain – automation suppliers, machine builders and systems integrators – to integrate energy management evaluation and planning.
- New production line
When adding IP connectivity to a new production line or piece of equipment in an existing factory, take a hybrid approach to implementation: combine elements of the first two approaches. In effect, you’ll be taking a staged approach to plant-wide energy management implementation. The experience of implementing a single energy-managed line can inform and accelerate future CIP-based rollouts to other lines, as well as to future upgrades of existing lines and equipment.
The essential opportunity is consistent across each scenario. With the right implementation approach, plants at any lifecycle stage can harness the energy management benefits of IP connectivity.
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