The research project “ETA-Fabrik” focuses on improving the energy efficiency in the context of industrial production processes by developing a holistic view on the energy requirements of individual production systems (production machines, building services and construction) and systematically optimizing their interdependencies.
In the field of machining, up to 30 % of the energy requirements are spent on cooling processes for cutting-machine tools and up to 50 % are spent on heating the medium tank of an aqueous parts cleaning machine. One optimizing approach to improve the energy efficiency is the reutilization of waste heat from the cooling medium of the cutting-machine tool by raising the temperature level of the medium using a heat pump. A test rig has been developed and built up to demonstrate the potential of this solution. A variety of experimental scenarios resulted in an increase of energy efficiency of at least 43 %. In order to ensure practical relevance, the operating scenarios based on real process chains are analyzed by including the machinery as well as the produced parts. Additionally, the economic efficiency is ensured by the use of standard modules without accepting any compromises in functionality. The thermal crosslink includes the utilization of solar-thermal storage to provide heat transfer and allows the temporal decoupling of the operating machines. This test rig is a prearrangement and test setting for the crosslink of the whole factory with additional recuperation and storage technologies.