Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA)’s Windsor Assembly Plant (WAP) has won a Canadian Industry Partnership for Energy Conservation (CIPEC) Leadership Award. The recognition comes for key Process and Technology Improvements from a plant initiative that resulted in an approximate 30 per cent annual energy savings of existing chilled water system and reduced Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions equivalent to almost 21 homes’ energy use per annum.
At the plant, which builds Chrysler Pacifica, Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid and Dodge Grand Caravan minivans, a new vehicle rolls off the line every 48 seconds. It takes approximately 27 hours to complete a vehicle, and 8-10 of those hours are spent in the paint shop.
A recent onsite study conducted by the Energy Management Team at WAP identified opportunities to reduce energy consumption in the paint shop.
Throughout the plant, large compressors of chilled water are used to cool the air as well as the equipment during different processes. In the paint shop particularly, what is called the chiller system is crucial to maintain a set temperature and humidity level at all times for optimal and consistent paint application, as well as sustaining a cool temperature for the equipment.
The study outlined a multi-faceted chiller initiative, as it pertained to the paint shop, which included energy saving improvements such as resetting the supply temperature set point, retrofitting additional pumps with VFD (Variable Frequency Drive), removing mechanical flow controls & adding PLC (Programmable Logic Controller) logic control to operate the system. The project was executed over a two-week period last summer.
“I’m very proud of the Energy Management Team and their initiatives at Windsor Assembly Plant,” shared Michael Brieda, Plant Manager. “The team succeeded in implementing this new strategy effectively, and, in the first quarter alone, we’ve achieved 113 per cent of the anticipated savings, which is an incredible success! I’m proud to say that we not only build environmentally friendly vehicles, but we strive to do so in an environmentally sustainable facility.”
FCA and the team from WAP were honoured at an awards ceremony last week, as part of Natural Resources Canada’s Energy Summit 2018 in Toronto.
Source: FCA Media