Danfoss is a Danish multinational manufacturer of hydraulic, temperature control, and power solutions. They’ve recently combined their heating and cooling segments into a single, climate-focused business entity that has accelerated their scope for developing integrated, energy-efficient solutions to power the smart cities of tomorrow.
With more than 40,000 employees and 95 factories worldwide, Danfoss has pledged sustainability as the centrepiece of their production optimization strategy ahead of 2025.
Previous operational challenges
As part of their goal of becoming carbon-neutral by 2030, Danfoss began monitoring the energy consumption of all their production facilities and retail locations.
Considering just how much their energy costs have increased, Danfoss opted for a detailed approach, going as far as comparing energy consumption reports for each production line against their traditional meters and metrics. They began to track the consumption of electricity and analyze the data in detail to help them understand where they could improve efficiency.
Evaluating energy consumption
But from the project’s onset, one challenge looked more difficult than the rest: managing their standby energy consumption. This seems to be a common issue in a lot of production plants because of the amount of equipment with specific power cycling needs. For instance, equipment that requires power to keep hydraulic fluid warm during operation whether or not you’re actually producing.
Watch the webinar on-demand with our guest speaker from Danfoss to learn more about their energy efficiency journey
Applying a new data measuring strategy
Roll out of Blackbird’s energy meters began with a pilot on three different machines in one of their newly built production facilities. Implementation was quick and easy, with Danfoss adding a Factbird Duo device to each line, letting them monitor energy consumption in real time. Our devices come with sim cards and Wi-Fi connectivity standards and send data directly to the cloud where it’s aggregated, analyzed, and visualized by the Blackbird application.
Consumption vs. output
To support their energy saving initiative, Danfoss, in partnership with Blackbird, developed a Digital performance dashboard that displays both their machinery’s energy consumption and manufacturing output, as well as a live camera feed timestamped to production flow. Danfoss has an aim to have an energy-saving KPI so managers can quickly track every resource used in production departments to help them evaluate how to reduce the consumption of electricity. All this data is gathered and presented in an easy-to-understand way, helping them narrow down improvement opportunities and focus areas more quickly.
The impact of data-based decisions in everyday production
Comparing energy consumption and output side-by-side was eye-opening for their operations managers. Blackbird’s data insights helped shed light on just how much power Danfoss’ equipment had been using when left on standby. And the numbers were shocking! The power that a machine consumed on average during stand-by was the equivalent of the average energy usage of 20 resident users or 9 households in Denmark.
During the weekend, every machine was left on standby mode to help reduce how long it took to start up before production. The Blackbird solution tracks and accounts for every second of the day and night, automating your KPI tracking process. When managers arrived that first Monday morning to review their findings, reports showed that standby mode had been costing the company considerably more than they had originally expected. They have decided to look into shutting off options or ways to lower the stand-by power consumption.
Reliable data shapes mindset
Updated reports indicated the experiment could save, Danfoss up to 77% off their stand-by power consumption on the machinery used in the pilot project. They advised managers at every production department to do the same, moving the company closer to meeting their sustainability goals and lowering their operational energy costs significantly.