Innovative Sintered Metals, Inc., (ISM) is a powdered metal manufacturer located in St. Marys, Pennsylvania. ISM planned to install a pre-heat chamber on one of its sintering furnaces. The pre-heat chamber uses a small amount of electricity to combust waste hydrogen and lubricant vapors. The additional heat allows energy to be recovered from a waste stream, and, therefore, lower the usage of electricity. ISM wanted to determine the energy savings as a result of the pre-combustion chamber.
The PennTAP Connection
PennTAP technical advisers and PennTAP’s Penn State engineering student interns visited the facility to observe operations and collect data regarding the installation of the pre-heat chamber. This service was offered to ISM at no cost, due to grant funding through the Department of Energy (DOE) State Energy Program and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Agency (DEP).
PennTAP performed data review and calculations and analyzed the energy savings as a result of the pre-combustion chamber. The results of this analysis served as a basis for applications for financial assistance under the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Energy Assistance Program (REAP). PennTAP also provided assistance with completing the grant application documents, requesting $13,000.
PennTAP determined that by purchasing the pre-heat chamber, the electric energy consumption is expected to decrease by 23% of the site’s total energy use. The cost savings is expected to be approximately $18,200 per year, giving a simple payback of 2.8 years. Further, ISM expects to be able to increase the rate of production using the new pre-heat chamber.
About the Company
Industry: Fabricated Metal Product Manufacturing