Manufacturing Sustainability: Green Manufacturing News

Vacon AC drives saved 35 TWh of energy in 2010

posted by Wendy Stott
Published: February 24, 2011

The AC drives of globally operating Vacon helped save an estimated 35 TWh of energy in 2010. The energy savings helped reduce the carbon dioxide emissions by about 17 million tons, which, for its part, help mitigate climate change.

About 35 TWh of electrical energy was saved last year with the help of Vacon AC drives. This corresponds to the amount of energy produced by approximately six 700-MW nuclear power reactors in a year.

Producing the same amount of energy using the current electricity production methods would have caused about 17 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions. This amount of carbon dioxide corresponds to the annual emissions of about 4.5 million cars.

An AC drive adjusts the speed of an electric motor according to the real process need, which typically reduces energy consumption by 20-50 %. An investment in an AC drive is small compared to the cost of the energy an electric motor consumes, so the energy savings resulting from an AC drive controlling a motor quickly makes the investment profitable. According to studies, the payback time of AC drives has continuously shortened. For example, in pump and fan applications the payback time can even be less than one year.

"Vacon has delivered AC drives since 1995, and they are used to control electric motors, and in renewable energy generation. Competing or substitute technical solutions do not exist for AC drives and are not within sight," says Vesa Laisi, President and CEO.