In Canada, the industrial sector accounts for 38% of secondary energy use and 34% of related greenhouse gas emissions (Office of Energy Efficiency, 2005). Studies show that, even with up-to-date plants and industrial processes, industrial energy efficiency can be further improved by as much as 20% or more. The implementation of such improvements provides a positive environmental impact and reduces energy costs.
CanmetENERGY applies its specific expertise to energy-oriented research and development (R&D) projects for the benefit of Canadian plants. We also deploy existing knowledge and new technological tools to assist industry in implementing more energy efficient technologies. Our expertise lies in:
We examine industrial energy consumption and consider ways to improve energy output while decreasing greenhouse gas emissions. Our scientists investigate the use of high-quality metallurgical fuels including coal and coke and alternative fuels such as biomass for the iron and steel sector. They also research the type of furnaces, boilers and other high-temperature processes being used by industry, and explore other means including digital simulation, oxy-combustion technologies and catalysis that could be used to improve energy efficiency.
We identify energy recovery opportunities for industry by using a global approach. The decreased energy consumption comes about either across the overall process (pulp and paper, chemicals, etc.) or at specific operations in the process (distillation, drying, etc.). The improvements can result from the recovery and use of rejected heat streams, from optimized control based on process modeling, or from the use of hybrid technologies (eg. distillation, adsorption and membranes). Our experts and industry partners rely on our analysis tools not only to examine the individual equipment pieces, their operation and their utility systems, but also to study how they interact, in order to reduce global plant consumption.
CanmetENERGY works closely with its industry partners to target priority research areas, conducts demonstration projects and transfers technology and knowledge to the private sector.
This figure shows the Canadian annual energy consumption per sector and demonstrates the relative weight of industrial processes in the total energy consumption (OEE, 2005).