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Good practices in CP: 45. Replacement of the cooling system of machines and molds (TPP Thermoplastics Polska Sp. z o.o.)

Written By Polski Ruch Czystszej Produkcji on czwartek, 27 października 2022 | 10:15

Cooling system 
photo by: TPP Thermoplastics Polska Sp. z o.o.


Good practices and investments related to Cleaner Production

Example No. 45
Replacement of the cooling system of machines and molds

TPP Thermoplastics Polska Sp. z o.o., Solec Kujawski

Industry branch: plastics
Main products: soil stabilization systems (lawn and parking grids) made from recycled and recyclable materials

Resources in question:

  • Fossil fuels
  • Materials
Pollution, waste in question:
  • Emissions into the atmosphere (indirectly)
Cost (implementation of good practice): High
(approx. PLN 1,200,000)

Description of the problem:

During the environmental review, one of the factors generating high electricity consumption was found to be an inefficient mold and hydraulic cooling system (high energy consumption, insufficient cooling power), using glycol. Therefore, alternative solutions were considered, based on, among other things, consultations with specialists and consultants in the refrigeration equipment industry, as well as observation of refrigeration solutions in operation at other production facilities.

Applied solution:
The project included the installation of a new cooling system for injection molding machines and molds. The new system, which consists of a refrigerating unit and 2 mechanical draft cooling towers, is characterized by significantly lower energy consumption than the previous one, as well as basing the cooling process on water, which made it possible to eliminate the use of glycol.
The cooling system will consist of two circuits:
  • Cooling of hydraulics through 2 mechanical draft cooling towers
  • Cooling of the molds through a refrigerating unit
Thanks to such a selection of equipment, even in hot weather of 35oC, production can be carried out at full capacity, while at low outside temperatures (e.g., in winter), the refrigerating unit is relieved thanks to the attachment of mechanical draft cooling towers (while at lower temperatures only mechanical draft cooling towers can work, without the unit).

The new system was seated in a specially constructed container located outside the hall. This has given additional space savings that can be utilized for production needs, and has contributed to lower noise levels inside the hall. Building the new system and adapting machinery to it required a temporary stoppage of production, but the company has secured goods in stock for the time of the project's implementation.

Obtained benefits and effects of the implementation:

  • Savings in terms of electricity consumed, and thus fuel consumption and emissions – including CO2:
    • electricity consumption reduction: 1,001,277 kWh/year, including:
      • by using mechanical draft cooling towers to cool the equipment: 650,160 kWh
      • by using the refrigerating unit relief: 351,117 kWh/year
    • indirect reduction of CO2 emissions (generated during production of the aforementioned electricity):  approx. 780 Mg/year
  • Elimination from the system of the use of glycol as a coolant,
  • Increase in the production capacity by 5% with a more efficient cooling system (reducing production cycle time through optimal cooling of machines and molds)
  • Savings from reduced electricity consumption: 3%
  • Return on investment: 2 years and 10 months.

Refrigerating unit
photo by: TPP Thermoplastics Polska Sp. z o.o.

Mechanical draft cooling towers
photo by: TPP Thermoplastics Polska Sp. z o.o.

  • Report on the Cleaner Production Project No. 5ind.778, developed within the framework of the Cleaner Production Academy “Project of cooling system replacement at TPP Thermoplastics Polska Sp. z o.o.”
  • Materials (including photos) submitted by TPP Thermoplastics Polska Sp. z o.o.

Polish version:

This material has been subsidized by the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management. The Polish Cleaner Production Movement Association is solely responsible for its content.


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