Asset management software helps lower carbon emissions, utility bills

Infor has added a capability for boosting energy efficiency to its enterprise asset management package. To prove that this new solution works, Infor connected its EAM system to two pumps that distribute cool air through the halls of the Venetian Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

12/16/2008


Atlanta -- Infor has added a capability for boosting energy efficiency to its enterprise asset management (EAM) package. To prove that this new solution works, Infor connected its EAM system to two pumps that distribute cool air through the halls of the Venetian Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
The Venetian was the site of Infor’s annual user conference—which took place October 13 through 16. Infor leveraged its status as a return customer (its conference has been at the Venetian for at least the past three years) to coax Venetian management into allowing the demonstration.
Ultimately, the experiment proved beneficial to the Venetian, as the Infor EAM solution showed one of the chiller pumps running well below its rated efficiency level. Further inspection by the Venetian’s maintenance staff uncovered several worn seals that, when replaced, should return the pump to full efficiency.
Johnny Bofilios, director, global asset sustainability, Infor, says the equipment monitoring feature is just one part of an overall strategy that Infor recommends companies follow to improve the energy efficiency of equipment—including manufacturing machinery. “Normally, EAM strategies involve tracking asset lifecycles and looking at labor and inventory costs,” Bofilios says.
Bofilios recommends taking a phased approach to instituting energy efficiency strategies, starting by tracking current energy use and measuring your company’s carbon footprint, both of which can be done with the new Infor solution.
“We can enter information from utility bills, including the mixture of fuels—coal, natural gas, etc.—that are used to produce the electricity you are receiving.” An analysis is then conducted to determine how much carbon the facility is emitting and open a discussion of how to reduce those levels.
That can lead to the monitoring applications like the one demonstrated at the Venetian, which Bofilios says has the potential to save the resort more than $200 per month once the worn seals on the chiller pump are replaced.
The system in place at the Venetian consists of a Shark 100S meter from Electro Industries connected directly to the chiller pumps.

Shark 100S meter
The Shark 100S meter can monitor the energy efficiency of production equipment and feed results to the Infor EAM software application. Source: Electro Industries.

Energy consumption readings were transmitted to an i.LON Smart Sever via RS 485 communication protocols. The i.LON Smart Server, developed by Echelon, is a Web server for networks. That means it allows control networks connect to other networks using the same protocols that govern Internet traffic.
In Infor’s Venetian demo, the i.LON Smart Server converted readings from the chiller pumps into XML files and transmitted them to the Infor EAM Asset Sustainability solution over the Venetian’s local area network.
Maintenance staff accessed the readings through dashboards on desktop PCs. The system can be set to transmit data at set intervals. In the Venetian demo, readings were sent to the EAM system every 10 minutes. “Data can be viewed in either as graphs or in list views,” Bofilios says. “The system also can be set to send alerts when an asset is running below a certain level of efficiency. You can set it to notify the appropriate individuals by email or to generate work orders.”
This news item appears courtesy of Control Engineering’s sister publication Manufacturing Business Technology ( www.mbtmag.com ).
For more information, visit www.infor.com





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