Data-driven leakage management at Ringnes brewery ​

Ringnes brewery, which is part of the Carlsberg Group, is a major consumer of compressed air with their leakage management decisions being data driven.

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Sustainability drives the agenda
The introduction of a global sustainability agenda for the Carlsberg Group has influenced the direction for Ringnes when it comes to energy savings and the focus on cutting carbon emissions. ”The introduction of the ZERO carbon footprint agenda changed the mindset around utilities like compressed air,“ explains Marius Fagernes, Project Manager at Ringnes.

The facility
A total of 300 million litres of beverages is produced every year at the Ringnes facility in Gjelleråsen outside Oslo, Norway. The brewery, which employs 900 people and covers an area of 77 000m3, produces beer and soft drinks. The portfolio includes cans, glass & PET bottles and kegs.

The facility was originally set up in 1994 and was subsequently upgraded and fitted with two separate compressed air systems in 2001. These supply approx. 40m3/min and support both the production lines and logistics facility. The warehouse is fitted with a fully automated picking system which is also running on the compressed air system.

Baseline the system
In 2016 Ringnes initiated an audit of their system to baseline their compressed air usage and the resulting energy consumption and CO2 emission. “We realized that leakages in our compressed air system involve more than just lost air”, says Marius Fagernes, and he continues: ”Lost air is a lost opportunity for energy savings.”

Ringnes partnered with Tyge Filseth from TYLEKK who used Enersize software to document the audit and arrive at a project proposal. The Project Calculation, based on the data from the audit, showed that with a relative small investment Rignes could achieve significant savings. The return on investment (ROI) was very short.
Based on the data from the audit and analysis, Ringnes decided to initiate a leakage detection survey and subsequent repair project.

Leakage detection and repair results
In the 2016 repair project, 66 percent of the leakages which were detected during the leakage detection survey, were repaired. A new audit was conducted after 6 months which showed a 44 percent reduction in the leakage level across the system. The result was a total of 450,000kWh in energy savings attributed directly to the first year of the leakage repair project.

Fagernes elaborates: “The result that we saw from the first repair project was impressive. But for us it was never about doing a stand-alone repair project. Our objective was to set a baseline, and then stay close to that baseline moving forward. In our experience it is more effective to incorporate repairs as an integral part of our daily maintenance work than to wait a couple of years and do another stand-alone project.”

Since 2016, Ringnes has been conducting a leakage detection survey on an annual basis. Utility staff at Ringnes are monitoring data for the compressed air system on a weekly basis. Marius Fagernes estimates that Ringnes is seeing an estimated year-on-year cost avoidance equivalent to 100,000kWh due to continuous leakage management.

Data-driven decisions
At Ringnes, all decisions about the compressed air system are based on data. Data for maintenance and repair projects must be presented in a business case for the project to receive funding. Ringnes has therefore installed a state-of-the-art monitoring system to capture data from the compressed air system. Fagernes offers a piece of advice to others who are in process of building a business case for maintenance: “Get the finance team involved from the beginning. That way you are sure to include the data and KPIs that they need to support the business case.”

Ringnes is also looking at their compressor capacity. “If we can better align our compressor capacity to our compressed air demand, we see a huge potential for further energy cost savings. It is important to continuously optimize the compressed air system to meet the changing needs in the production line,” says Fagernes.

“We would never have reached this point where we are actively evaluating our compressor capacity, if we didn’t have the right data. This is where Enersize has helped us enormously,” concludes Marius Fagernes.

About Ringnes

  • Ringnes AS is the leading beverage brand in Norway. The brewery, which employs 900 people and covers an area of 77 000 m3, produces beer and soft drinks
  • The facility is fitted with two separate compressed air systems. These supply approx. 40m3/min and support both the production lines and logistics facility
  • Ringnes is part of the Carlsberg Group

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