Reducing electricity costs with the new extraction system

The company Jörg Schimkat in Potsdam has made a targeted investment in a new extraction system with a briquetting press in order to significantly reduce electricity consumption and thus electricity costs.

The joinery Jörg Schimkat in Potsdam-Babelsberg is a well-known company in the region. Customers are served by four journeymen, and numerous orders concern the protection of historical monuments.

They also work for the church and other public institutions.

In 2017, the master carpenter received the suggestion for the investment in a new extraction system at an information event of the Potsdam Chamber of Trade on the subject of "Improving the energy efficiency of a company". The statements on the subject has had an effect on Mr. Schimkat and so the idea of renewing the extraction system matured.

With the old plant, 8 woodworking machines were sucked off by 3 dust extractors, which produced an air volume of approx. 5,600 m³/h. The required motor power was 9.3 kW.

The responsible sales representative of SPÄNEX, Mr. Kalina, discussed the details of the project with Mr. Schimkat and offered a SPÄNEX compact dust extractor type SMU 60, reaching an extraction volume flow of 6,000 m³/h. The integrated exhaust fan has a connected load of 7.5 kW.

A comparison of the motor data between the new and the old system already shows a reduction in power requirement of 1.8 kW. The decisive contribution to the energy efficiency of the system and thus to the savings potential in electricity costs is, however, made by speed control. Not only the maximum extraction volume flow can be set via it, but also only the required extraction capacity is provided depending on the operated machines. Experience has shown that this demand-based operation in conjunction with the high efficiency of the extraction fan results in power savings of up to 40%.

    In addition to the electricity savings, there are other advantages resulting from the speed control, which are also remarkable:

    • low-noise operation by averagely low fan speed,
    • soft start of the extraction fan without power peaks,   
    • provision of extraction capacity independent of the degree of contamination of the filter elements.

    Another important innovation compared to the old plant was the briquetting press. Mr. Schimkat's idea was to briquette the chips and burn the briquettes in the existing boiler. The advantages were obvious for Mr. Schimkat:

    • the chips can be used as fuel and  
    • the preparation of logs for firing in the boiler is not necessary.

    The briquetting press is located directly below the dust extractor, so that an overall compact unit is the result, which is an ideal solution for the cramped space conditions. The briquetting press with a connected load of 4.5 kW produces 50 - 70 kg briquettes per hour, depending on the material.

    And the best comes last. Mr. Schimkat has been advised free of charge by the Chamber of Crafts Potsdam about the possibility of promoting the plant. Together the possibilities were examined and the subsidy application was prepared. All measures that lead to an improvement in the energy efficiency of systems are eligible for aid under the state programme "RENplus".

    As Mr Schimkat's project has a multiple effect in terms of energy saving and environmental protection, in that electricity consumption is reduced and the chips are used as fuel, eligibility for aid was particularly high. The positive decision on the application with a considerable subsidy rate came promptly, so that Mr. Schimkat was able to place the order for the new extraction system with briquetting press.

    His recommendation: He advises all colleagues who are planning such a project to use the free advisory service and the support of the Chambers of Skilled Crafts with regard to the promotion possibilities also in the other federal states. For him, the investment has paid off all round, especially since, according to the prognosis of the energy consultant, he can count on annual savings in electricity costs of approx. 2,000.00 € and the briquettes are an excellent fuel.

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