Making a contribution through waste
Endress+Hauser's mechanical production has taken on a more sustainable approach.
Endress+Hauser processes 1,400 tons of stainless steel each year at the Maulburg location alone, resulting in a million components found in various pressure and fill level instruments. As part of the construction of a modern new facility, Endress+Hauser has made its mechanical production fit for the future, an investment that totaled 6 million euros in 2014.
The production processes yield piles of stainless steel shavings, material which is extremely robust and difficult to process. When manufacturing the components, nearly half of the raw material becomes machine shavings. Department head Armin Nüssle explains: "In order to simplify disposal, we procured a machine that presses the voluminous shavings into manageable-sized pellets and cleans them of any residual cooling lubricant."
The machine simplifies the technicians work while contributing to the protection of the environment at the same time.
Prior to implementing the new system, the waste disposal company had to retrieve around 15 containers of scrap metal each month. Now it's only five and they contain a greater amount of valuable raw material. Since the pellets bring a higher price from the disposal companies, the mechanical production generates a higher return.
The pellet compactor recovers the cooling lubricant so that it can be reused, thus lowering usage by half and correspondingly reducing the amount that needs to be disposed of.
Because of the pellet compactor, the annual return yielded by the mechanical production has increased by 200,000 euros. Added to that is roughly 20,000 euros in cost savings that result from having to dispose of and restock less cooling lubricant.