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Yara boosts energy efficiency with ABB motors and drives

Published by , Editorial Assistant
World Fertilizer,

ABB is supplying highly efficient motors and drives to enable Yara, the world’s leading producer of nitrogen-based complex fertilizers, to boost energy efficiency at its main production site in Porsgrunn, Norway. The long-term upgrade project will yield annual energy savings of 32 – 40 GWh and cut CO2 emissions by 12 – 19 kt – equivalent to emissions produced by nearly 14 000 standard cars.

In the first project phase, around 1000 low voltage electrical motors at Porsgrunn have already been replaced with IE3 motors. This is the current minimum efficiency level required by the latest Ecodesign regulation that came into force in July 2021. Variable speed drives (VSDs) were added to 75% of these motors, offering a major increase in energy efficiency, saving around 16 GWh per year.

Long-term Planning is now ongoing for the next phase that will be executed during equipment upgrades and replacements as well as within new projects. This will eventually include 2500 motors with an average power of 75 kW upgraded with SynRM motor and drive packages offering ultra-premium IE5 efficiency. Nearly 70% of these motors are fitted to pump and fan applications which offer significant energy saving opportunities.

In additions to energy savings and reduction in carbon emissions, Yara further expects significant savings in maintenance costs due to lower wear and tear, attributable to the longer lifetime of motors and VSD-driven machinery due to lower mechanical stress.

Perry Jaspers, Technical process owner electricity and automation at Yara said: “ABB helped evaluate our systems and outline all the benefits of upgrading. Choosing the latest motor and drive technology is crucial for improving our energy efficiency. It is also yielding major benefits in increased uptime and lower maintenance.”

Stefan Floeck, ABB Division President for IEC Low Voltage Motors commented: “The Yara project is an excellent example of the business impact that upgrading to state-of-the-art motors and drives can have, not only in boosting energy efficiency but also in process continuity. Switching to IE5 SynRM technology offers a fast return on investment as well as enabling companies to future-proof their operations."

The Porsgrunn plant also actively collaborates with ABB and Stena Recycling to sustainably recycle old motors as part of the circular economy initiative.

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