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Five Common Energy Conversion Projects in Small and Medium-Sized Industrial Plants
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A Department of Energy funded Energy Analysis and Diagnostic Center (EADC) has operated at Texas A&M University for six years. During the first five years of the center's operation, 135 audits were conducted and projects were recommended which would save $4 million annually (about 9 % of utility costs) for Texas manufacturers. Five projects discussed in this paper—repair air compressor leaks, install heat recovery equipment, correct power factor, install skylights, and tune-up boilers—recur often and have applicability to many plants in many industries. A simple method of measuring air compressor leak rates is covered. Decisions about power factor correction based on utility billing data can be made and those are discussed. The use of simple electronic analyzers to measure boiler combustion efficiency and tune boilers is possible, and higher cost projects such as use of skylights and recovery of heat from exhaust gases are also covered.