The government should encourage energy efficiency labelling and ratings of products
With more than 60 years of continual growth, Grundfos needs no introduction. The company is sharply focused on developing energy efficient products and technology. Mahathi Parashuram, Head - Public Affairs, Grundfos Pumps India, elaborates on how their products pushed the company to be a global leader in advanced pump solutions and a trendsetter in water technology. Excerpts from the interview.
What are the main products offered by the company?
Grundfos provides the most energy-efficient pumping solutions with the lowest lifecycle cost to its users. Our main products include circulator pumps for heating and air-conditioning as well as other centrifugal pumps for the industry, water supply, sewage and dosing.
Where are your manufacturing facilities located? What is your annual production capacity?
Grundfos is present in all the continents with 60 sales companies, 15 productions sites of Grundfos, 12 productions sites of acquired companies and four research and development sites across the globe. Grundfos produces 18 million pump units annually across these 15 production units. Grundfos India and has two production facilities, one adjoined to its corporate office in Chennai and another in the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) on the East Coast Road, Tamil Nadu.
Have you launched any new products lately that offer significant energy savings?
Without precisely the right motor, even the best pump will consistently waste energy. That's why we have developed our own Grundfos high efficiency motor technology specifically for pumps. We call it Grundfos Blueflux«. The Grundfos Blueflux« technology represents the best from Grundfos within energy efficient motors and variable frequency drives (i.e, MG motors, MGE motors and CUE drives, though not limited to such families). The Grundfos Blueflux® motor technology label ensures that the motor meets or exceeds international legislation regarding motor efficiency. Every aspect of the Grundfos Blueflux® motor has been optimised to minimise energy loss and contribute to outstanding performance and reliability.
What energy standards do your products cater do?
Pumps currently consume ten per cent of global electricity. However, most are needlessly inefficient. With Grundfos, high efficiency pump and motor technology we can reduce the average pump's energy consumption by up to 60 per cent. Grundfos pumps have been known for energy efficiency and reliability. While the pumps are produced to meet the tough working conditions of industry applications, utmost care is taken to comply with environmental norms in terms of recyclability of the pump components, usage of non-volatile paints, use of energy efficient motors, etc. Further, the solutions being provided focus more on energy efficiency and flexibility as compared to the traditional solutions currently being used in industries.
Please elaborate on the major technologies used in your products?
Throughout its history, Grundfos has worked with product sustainability. The most systematic approach can be connected to driving energy efficiency forward. The time has come for Grundfos to broaden the focus since an increasing number of internal and external drivers point at the need to optimise the product performance, by considering the whole lifecycle. This demands systematically working with material selection, production, packaging, distribution, use and lifetime, and end-of-life.
In order to foster a systematic approach towards holistic lifecycle thinking, Grundfos has developed its own methodology (toolbox) which combines life-cycle thinking, eco-design principles and guidelines with our product development and innovation processes. The toolbox is currently in its implementation phase and aims at making sure that all products are developed based on a life cycle approach. As part of a desired holistic Lifecycle Management Approach it is of highest interest to Grundfos to design our products in a way for them to be re-cycled with maximum resource extraction and reuse whilst ensuring high quality and functionality. Furthermore, the ambition is to also investigate how to increase the use of secondary materials in future products, where possible. With a continuous effort to improve our products we want to work closely with end-of-life handling facilities to ensure that future products will be designed for maximum resource-recirculation. As a premise, we are working systematically to ensure that our products can be recycled to the largest part possible. Whilst some products have a very high recyclability rate already others leave room for improvement. It is hereby very important to consider the market that a product is sold into since resource extraction depends on the local availability of treatment facilities.
How high is the demand for energy-efficient products in India?
The Indian market and consumers are slowly but steadily moving towards adopting energy-efficient products. India is also realising that sustainability is not just the right path forward but will also help in saving costs and resources (energy and water). The government, however, now needs to help push the sustainability agenda further by promoting the development and use of energy efficient products through subsidies. It is critical that the government encourages energy efficiency labeling and ratings of products. These moves will definitely open up the market for eco-friendly products, making India more competitive on this front.