Back in 1999, there were global calls for recognition of climate change as a serious problem facing the next several generations. Companies across all sectors were called upon to investigate ways to reduce waste and cut carbon emissions. Hitachi, as one of the world’s leading manufacturers of industrial equipment, rose to the occasion and rolled out their own program for saving energy and improving operations for all of their customers. This program resulted in many improvements in commercial compressor installations and offered companies a clear path to operating more efficiently in the future. We’ll take a look at how we got there.
To begin with, Hitachi group formed a new division known as ESCO, or Energy Service Company. The goal of ESCO was to reach out to current and future customers, and devise ways for them to bring their current commercial equipment up to a new standard of performance, including more energy efficient compressors for HVAC and refrigeration systems. By targeting these large-scale users, Hitachi knew that they could capture and remedy some of the biggest sources of waste in the industry. However, this was only the first step.
Evaluating Current Equipment
As Hitachi’s ESCO took off, they set their sites on companies who relied heavily on year-round cooling to operate their businesses. Most notably, food production, shipping and storage companies are among the greatest users of Hitachi compressors because it takes constant work to keep refrigeration units at the proper temperature, whereas HVAC systems tend to be seasonal in usage. By focusing on the refrigeration sector, Hitachi was able to drill down to the heart of the problem and come up with some creative solutions to the problem.
Building More Efficient Commercial Compressors
After evaluating the major causes of waste among their customers, Hitachi’s ESCO came to several important conclusions. First, it was noted that the rising cost of energy meant that future commercial compressors would need to be versatile enough to move between energy sources without creating downtime. Secondly, all compressors must be optimized for efficiency so as to minimize CO2 emissions during normal use. Hitachi took these lessons to heart and began building a new generation of commercial compressors to meet the growing need for efficient options.
Energy Efficient and Low- Noise
Today, Hitachi’s commercial compressors are known for being both energy-efficient and low-noise. Hitachi’s engineering team spent several years devising oil-free and low-maintenance options that would extend the lifespan of their compressors under normal operating conditions, cutting down on the need for replacement parts and commercial lubricants. Furthermore, by improving operating tolerances and reducing noise, Hitachi also managed to cut down on energy lost to vibration and heat in the system. This means that today’s commercial refrigeration compressors are able to operate at a fraction of the cost of an older compressor, and they are able to fit in smaller spaces without creating an uncomfortable level of noise. By integrating these new compressors with modern monitoring technologies and IoT systems, Hitachi’s energy service team is also able to predict wear and tear of a system. By tracking this information, it is easier to make repairs and perform maintenance before there is a measurable loss in efficiency throughout the system. This real-time maintenance system has proven highly effective in cutting energy costs and downtime, and increasing productivity.
Going forward, Hitachi’s commercial compressor division continues to fight for improved energy usage and more flexible solutions that will meet the needs of your commercial refrigeration and HVAC system by adjusting up and down to current conditions. With these technologies rolling out, and current monitoring systems in place, you can see monthly energy savings in the one area that makes up the largest portion of your operating costs. To learn more about Hitachi’s high-tech commercial compressors, contact Compressors Unlimited tdday.