Evonik – Chilled Water Optimization

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Evonik is a world leader in specialty chemicals, with more than 20 individual production units across their plant site in Mobile, Alabama. Evonik’s Energy and Utilities Unit implemented digital tools to reduce energy input for steam, chilled water, and compressed air production. The tools effectively balance the supply and demand of the Mobile’s site chill water usage while maintaining the chill water supply temperature within specified limits (<4.2 °C for 15 minutes). Several goals associated with the project were identified that, if achieved, would lower the Mobile Site’s carbon footprint due to a reduction in energy usage, freshwater usage, and steam venting to the atmosphere.

Evonik’s advanced process control module minimized energy input for chilled water and compressed air production. This upgrade resulted in energy savings of over 3 million kilowatt-hours per year and a water reduction of nearly 9 million gallons of freshwater per year. It also equates to a reduction of 1700 metric tons of carbon dioxide emitted to the atmosphere, thus reducing the site’s carbon footprint. 

Their second phase focused on steam production by minimizing natural gas consumption and freshwater usage with KPI monitoring and improved process control. Evonik reduced steam venting by approximately 11,721 metric tons per year, saving the facility an additional 3 million gallons of fresh water and another 725-ton reduction of carbon dioxide emitted to the atmosphere each year.

“Evonik’s greatest investment is our employees. This project is a prime example of employee-led innovation, which further establishes Evonik as a global leader in sustainable chemical manufacturing,” said Kel Boisvert, Vice President and Site Manager, at Evonik Mobile.

Evonik’s new digital tools illustrate their commitment to clean water on the Gulf Coast by effectively balancing the supply and demand of the Mobile sites chill water usage.

Partners for Environmental Progress Annual Meeting, Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022, at the McQueen Alumni Center in Mobile, Ala. (Mike Kittrell)