MHI Thermal Systems Wins the “The Energy Conservation Center Japan Chairman’s Prize” at the 2021 Energy Conservation Grand Prize

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Recognition of Energy Savings from a Factory Heating and Cooling System Using an Aquifer Thermal Energy Storage System

– Focus on the unutilized energy of 700kw in geothermal heat, with cyclical use of heat throughout the year for effective energy utilization.
– Reduction in heat emissions into the atmosphere, and underground heat balance of zero for the full year period, also helps to protect the global environment.

TOKYO, Dec 23, 2021 – (JCN Newswire) – Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Thermal Systems, Ltd. (MHI Thermal Systems), a part of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group, has won the Energy Conservation Center, Japan Chairman’s Award in “Best Practice Category” at the 2021 Energy Conservation Grand Prize sponsored by the Energy Conservation Center, Japan (ECCJ), with support from Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI). This award was given for energy saving measures in a factory cooling and heating system that uses an aquifer(1) thermal storage (ATES). Underground water stored in aquifers is highly valued for its energy conservation potential and environmental performance. MHI Thermal Systems received this award for the Best Practices category for the first time.
The initiative recognized with this reward is the introduction of an ATES system that takes advantage of the unutilized energy of 700kw in geothermal heat for the heating and cooling system at the MHI Thermal Systems Kobe Works, located on the grounds of the MHI Kobe Shipyard & Machinery Works in Hyogo Prefecture. The system allows for efficient energy use by allowing for the cyclical usage of heat throughout the seasons. It uses the cold exhaust from heating during winter to heat during summer and the warm exhaust from air conditioner during summer to heat during winter.

Other benefits include a reduction in heat emissions and an underground heat balance of zero over the entire year. This, along with other benefits, helps to reduce CO2 emissions and alleviate the heat island effect.

Additional energy-saving measures adopted for the ATES system include the use of a high-performance inverter centrifugal heat pump(2) with low-GWP(3) refrigerant, adoption of an optimal control system, introduction of visualization systems to assess energy usage and heat source well performance, and utilization of initial year operating data for long-term operation from the second year and beyond. As a result, compared to a gas absorption cold/hot water heater with similar capacity, this system provides a reduction in annual primary energy consumption equivalent to 46.5kL in crude oil per annum (reduction rate of 49.9%), and CO2 reductions of 109.1 tonnes per annum (reduction rate of 65.3%).

The ECCJ Energy Conservation Grand Prize were established in 2011 to raise awareness of energy conservation, promote related activities and initiatives, and contribute to the widespread adoption of energy-efficient products and practices. This annual awards program honors companies and workplaces for their outstanding energy-saving efforts. It also recognizes innovative products and business models that save energy.

MHI Thermal Systems, encouraged by this award, will continue to develop technologies and products that further contribute to energy conservation. MHI Thermal Systems, encouraged by this award, will continue to develop technologies and products that further contribute to energy conservation. This includes the thermal engineering business which improves energy efficiency in large production plants, large-scale refrigeration business to cool large spaces, and air conditioning business to create comfortable spaces. MHI Thermal Systems will also draw on its broad-ranging technological capabilities.

(1) An aquifer is an underground layer composed of gravel or other materials. This layer stores groundwater that is lower than ambient temperature, and warmer than winter. It is therefore considered unutilized temperature differential energy (Utility Energy) with high utility as a heat source.
(2) The use of warm water specifications based on the ETI-Z Series of centrifugal chillers for air conditioners manufactured by MHI Thermal Systems allows for switching between heating and cooling modes. For more information about the ETI-Z Series, please see the press release.
(3) Global Warming Potential (GWP) is a coefficient, with CO2 fixed at a GWP of 1.0. Smaller values indicate greater environmental performance.

Topic: Press release summary

Source: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.
Sectors: Alternative Energy

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