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Rethinking Inefficient Testing Power Supplies.
We’ll look at an energy-efficient power supply that delivered a 15% reduction in factory CO2 emissions.

As the adoption of the Paris agreement and sustainable development goals make the reduction of industry’s impact on the environment a global issue, more and more corporations are getting serious about reducing their carbon dioxide emissions. Environmentally friendly policies also help improve a company’s image.

The Problem

Boosting Energy Efficiency is Easier Said than Done.

In this case study, our client had been actively trying to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions and established an even more aggressive emissions target. They were attempting to reduce the amount of power consumed by the factory where they manufactured their flagship product: air-conditioners. However, the factory in question was already implementing measures to reduce power consumption and was not readily able to make further cuts. The client therefore decided to focus on processes that had yet to be addressed by previous efficiency improvements. The manager of the client’s manufacturing division explains:

“When we performed another review of the various processes carried out in the factory, we found that a large amount of power was being consumed by elements under test, or EUTs. The main reason for the increased power consumption was that many power supplies and checking devices needed to be left on all the time to accommodate our irregular testing schedule. Also, because many different models of air-conditioners were tested at the factory, all of our power supplies needed to be on standby such that testing of the maximum capacity device could be performed at any time.”

In light of these findings, the manager asked the manufacturer of the power supply used at factory about energy saving features. However, he was informed that the power supplies lacked any such function.

“No other processes at the factory offered the potential for significant reductions in power consumption, so our only option was to make changes to the power supply for EUTs,” says the manager.

Asked repeatedly by management to come up with solutions, the manager was forced to find a solution as soon as possible.

Key Aspects of the Problem

  • Power supplies to drive EUTs consumed a large amount of current while idle.

  • While the client would have liked its power supplies to have an energy saving mode, no such mode was available.

  • The client wanted to reduce their power consumption and cut CO2 emissions by changing the power supplies used to test EUTs.

How was this problem solved?