HomeIndustry SectorsEnergy EfficiencyLED lights help railway sector supplier cut energy bill

LED lights help railway sector supplier cut energy bill

14 December 2012 – Provider of energy-saving solutions, Rawlyn LED Lights, has assisted Voestalpine VAE SA to reduce its annual energy bill. The installation of newer greener technology at the head office and plant in Isando of this major manufacturer of turnouts for the railway industry in South Africa has seen it realise a reduction of between 18% and 25% in the monthly kWh used over the past few months. Projected savings at these facilities are estimated to reach almost R300,000 annually.

“Voestalpine VAE SA first approached us towards the end of 2011 to conduct an energy audit at its Isando head office. Our first step was to assess the existing lighting in the building. Based on these findings we presented the company with a proposal on the expense and projected savings of implementing energy reduction measures,” Warwick Stark of Rawlyn LED Lights, says.

Rawlyn LED Lights also recommended that Eskom’s Standard Product programme would be the best suited to cover the initial costs of implementing the changes. With the assistance of the Eskom rebate offered, there was a minimal difference in the total cost of the retrofit, with the company seeing a return on investment in about 13 months from the projected savings on energy.

“Once our proposal was accepted we entered into a test phase, during which we tried out different technologies and wattages to determine the required lux levels,” Stark says. The retrofit in the head office building included replacing all the existing 50 W halogen downlighters with 3.0 W LED downlighters, all fluorescent T8 tubes with T5 retrofits and all external flood and street pole parking lights to LEDs. “The demand reduction was calculated at an annual estimated saving of 30,634 kWh. In monetary terms, this equals a saving of almost R35,000 a year.”

These dramatic results prompted Voestalpine VAE SA to commission Rawlyn LED Lights to conduct an audit on the lighting and heating requirements of its manufacturing plant on the adjacent property in Isando. “The plant had a large number of 400 W high and low bays, and after a sample test area was installed with two different wattage high bays to test Lux levels, we proposed that these be replaced with 250 W induction high bay lights. Our cost analysis showed that this was the most viable option as it offers long maintenance-free lighting with good guarantees, a better lighting source and an average 40% saving in most cases.”

The old technologies that were replaced in the plant in Isando totalled 125 high bays, 25 low bays, some 20 odd induction flood lights, 260 fluorescent tubes, and 35 T5 channel fittings. In addition to the lighting Rawlyn LED Lights also audited the water heating requirements in the plant. The company proposed that the geysers in the ablution and shower blocks be replaced with 7.0 kW and 10 kW heat pumps respectively, with an average reduction of 60% in water heating costs projected.

“Overall, Voestalpine VAE SA will incur an annual energy saving of 164,480 kWh at these facilities. The company, which is expecting great demand and production increases owing to Transnet’s major expansion and capitalisation project, has now contracted us to complete an audit and recommend similar measures at its manufacturing facility in Kimberley,” Stark says.

Rawlyn LED Lights assists organisations in creating a greener image and reducing their carbon footprint. The company also manages the rebate process with the relevant Eskom energy advisor until closeout, in order to claim the agreed rebate on behalf of the client.

“Saving energy is a global drive and benefits the greater economy. Companies that employ greener technology can help Eskom achieve its 10% threshold margin of reserve capacity and assist in preventing future rolling blackouts,” Stark concludes.