At a Glance
Industrial Goods and Manufacturing
Clean and Renewable Energy
Net Present Value:
Ke Wang looked into the possibility of using solar to power a manufacturing facility for Burton.
Burton is looking to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions from snowboard production by implementing renewable energy at manufacturing facilities. In typical snowboard manufacturing, the epoxy curing process accounts for nearly half of the electricity used. EDF Climate Corps fellow Ke Wang was enlisted to help calculate the potential for solar energy generation at one of Burton’s suppliers, Light-7. Burton was also interested in finding opportunities to increase energy efficiency.
Ke Wang found two possible ways of using solar energy; either by transferring the solar energy directly into heating energy, or into electricity. After comparison, Ke Wang chose the grid-connected photovoltaic system and conducted an evaluation of this project. Not only can the system supply electricity for curing the epoxy, but it also has surplus electricity to supply other devices. Ke Wang additionally investigated other systems, such as the lighting and air compressor systems, and found that the residual heat of the air compressor could be used for refrigeration.
Ke found that annually, the photovoltaic system could generate 117,000 kWh of electricity and save 82 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions. Further, the available waste heat from the air compressor is about 50%, which could save significant electricity and costs. By implementing Ke’s recommendations, Burton should be able to accomplish its dual goals of emissions reductions and energy savings.