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Energy-saving profile will cut costs when plant is idle

05 July, 2009

Following a request from German car-makers, PI (Profibus and Profinet International) is developing a profile that will allow power-hungry industrial devices such as robots and lasers to be placed into standby when they are not being used. The profile, called Profienergy, is intended to cut energy consumption by providing a standardised interface for exchanging data and commands between controllers and a variety of equipment with energy-saving options. The first version of the profile is due to be released by the end of this year.

Aida – the Automation Initiative of German Automobile Manufacturers – believes that such a profile could help its members to save considerable amounts of energy when their plant is idle, even for short periods.

For example, a typical bodyshop line will consume around 80kW during normal operation, and will continue to consume 20kW even when the line is not in use. Even if items such as lasers were shut down for 30s between operations, the savings could be significant.

The Profienergy profile will support dynamic energy management by defining various energy-saving modes for different devices. It will allow users to manage energy consumption flexibly, without affecting their production processes.

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