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close this bookJournal of the Network of African Countries on Local Building Materials and Technologies - Volume 3, Number 4 (HABITAT, 1995, 46 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentThe aim of the network and its journal
View the documentForeword
View the documentEnergy efficiency in the production of building materials*
View the documentEnergy conservation for cost reduction in Indian cement industry - NCB's initiatives*
View the documentEnergy efficient method of portland slag cement grinding**
View the documentPlant audit and energy management***
View the documentEvents
View the documentPublications review

Plant audit and energy management***

***By S. K. Gupta, H. K. Dutt, Holtec Engineers Private Limited, New Delhi, India. This paper was presented to the third National Council for Cement and Building Materials (NCB) International Seminar on Cement and Building Materials, held in January 1991 in New Delhi, India.


India is still lagging behind considerably on energy front compared to the world standards. This gap can be narrowed down provided management sincerely initiates energy projects in their plants. It is suggested that an exclusive 'ENERGY MANAGEMENT CELL' (EMC) should be guided by an outside expert agency. This Exclusive Cell (EMC) should be manned by very dedicated, highly motivated and enterprising engineers/staff. The EMC has to work in a well coordinated manner with the production and maintenance group of running plants, to minimize the production losses.

Based on findings of Energy Audit, project should be structured, evaluated and implemented in a well planned and coordinated manner by EMC. The Energy Audit should be repeated periodically for improvements.

This paper emphasises the need of formation of EMC in each and every plant and elaborates its functions and the working style. Benefits from Energy Projects are bound to outweigh the input cost/efforts if the projects are attempted earnestly by EMC, suitably backed-up by Company's management.


1.1 In recent years, a great deal of emphasis is being laid on analysis of energy consumption, because of the obvious reasons - constant rising energy costs and its share in total production costs (up to 40 to 50 per cent in cement plants). Though considerable progress has been made in developed countries, we, however, in our country are yet to achieve the desired results.

1.2 It will be seen from the following comparison of energy consumption in cement industry that we are still lagging behind considerably:

Comparison/t of cement



(Dry and Wet Process Combined)

Electrical (Kwh)



Thermal (G.Cal)



Coal consumption (t)



(4600 K. cal/kg)

Thus, there is tremendous scope and imperative need for improvement on energy front.

1.3 For energy conservation what is really lacking is -sincerity and application on the part of management. If an exclusive cell is formed for monitoring the energy consumption and implementing the desired modifications with active participation from management, benefits are bound to accrue.

1.4 In this paper, an attempt has been made to elaborate the constitution of this Energy Management Cell, termed as EMC, its role and responsibilities and its working style.


2.1 EMC should be headed by "ENERGY MANAGER" (EM), a whole time incharge, reporting to management.

It should be borne in mind that energy management is 80 per cent attitude and only 20 per cent technology and also that energy management is in competition with numerous other plant objectives/problems. Therefore, EM has to be a highly dedicated person and with full back-up from Company's top management.

2.2 The EM shall be guided by 'ENERGY ADVISOR' (EA) which shall be an outside expert agency, experienced and qualified in energy management. EA shall take-up plant audit from time to time so that the process/equipment are upgraded, keeping pace with the latest technology/developments.

2.3 The EM shall be assisted by a few enterprising engineers and other staff for working as an independent cell and as a separate profit centre.

The EMC has to work in such a way that production/routine maintenance is least hampered. Simultaneously, results are also obtained, by working in close coordination with production/maintenance staff.

2.4 A typical organizational structure is shown in figure 1.


3.1 Broadly, the following activities can be identified in perview of EMC:

- Increasing the efficiency of existing installation.
- Investment in new installations with better efficiency.
- Change over to energy saving technologies/equipment.
- Operation of equipment in an energy saving manner.
- Avoidance of unplanned shut-down costs.
- Optimal sizing of installations.
- Reduction in energy costs by personnel motivation.
- Regulating the running hours of equipment/auxiliaries.

3.2 Tasks of EM could be defined as follows:

- Elaboration of goals of energy management and making them known by giving reasons/justifying them for implementation.

- Appointment of EA in consultation with Company's management and defining his responsibilities.

- Demonstration of latest techniques/developments in the field of energy management at regular intervals.

- Receiving reports from EA, analysis of the same and finalize recommendations.

- Establishment of means of financing of project.

- Removal of all hindrances and difficulties in implementation of energy conservation project.

- Publishing working programme(s) for personnel motivation.

3.3 Tasks of EA could be summarized as follows:

- Check, improve, extend and streamline measuring schemes and activities.

- Develope of a clear, well-defined reporting system and its updating from time to time.

- Energy audit of the complete plant including data collection, evaluation and recommendation on energy conservation programme.

- Elaboration of data and development of project.

- Assist in realization of the energy projects.

- Prescription to operators for correct handling of plant and equipment.

- Evaluation of results of energy conservation measures and to publish them.

3.4 Responsibilities of other members of EMC are:

- To assist/advice/coordinate with EA under supervision of EM.
- To discuss/propagate achievement(s) to their counterparts.
- Motivate plant staff on continuous basis.


The following list may be considered as the pre-requisites for energy management programmes:

- Flow sheet of production facilities.
- Equipment list.
- Material and gas flows and balance (for normal and maximum throughput).
- Energy flows and balances (for normal and maximum throughput).
- Production log-sheets.
- Laboratory testing results.
- Machine history - damage/shutdown/repair statistics.
- Operation manuals of all equipment.
- Trend curves for heat and electrical power consumption and other statistical data on daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis.
- Schematic diagram of compressed air and water supply/distribution network and actual operating data.
- Power distribution diagram.
- Energy bills.
- Cost of production statements.
- Latest and well-maintained measuring equipment.
- Highly motivated management and manpower for implementation of energy conservation projects.


5.1 Psychological aspects of the human being is the reason for most of the troubles, inspite of the fact that he usually blames others. The reason is usually found to be lack of rational attitude of the man towards energy. The following could be attributed for this kind of approach of personnel:

- Lack of technical competence.
- Indecisiveness of energy management.
- Under-estimation of potential advantages.
- Negative attitude towards newer technologies i.e. change.
- Lack of reliable measuring and comparison possibilities.
- Lack of exchange of thoughts and experiences.
- Negative attitude towards consulting.
- Waiting for still better technologies.
- Lack of will for cooperation and acceptance for additional/non-routine work.
- Lack of interest for training.
- Existing overload of work.
- Earlier experience of poor take-off of an energy conservation programme.
- Start of programme with uncertain basis, unclear goals and uncertainty of financial commitment.

Figure 1. A typical organizational structure of EMC

5.2 It is necessary to locate interested, active and qualified personnel for energy management schemes. First of all they should be properly oriented with company's attitudes and goals of energy programmes and then, trained to eliminate ignorance/wrong ideas. A premium or bonus system should be declared which should be commensurate with achieved results. Suggestions and ideas should be invited through suggestion boxes/conferences. This would make the personnel interested and motivated towards energy projects.


6.1 Evaluation of project

Based on the Energy Audit, areas have to be identified for improvements. These shall be analyzed/studied further and shall be categorized as projects. These projects have to be evaluated keeping in view the following:

- Effects on up and down stream part of the process.
- Shut-down costs (stripping, reconstruction, erection etc.).
- Operational reliability.
- Maintenance expenses.
- Evaluation based on rate of return and pay-back period.

Based on the returns and pay-back period, priorities of the projects are assigned.

A typical development of Energy Conservation Project and its evaluation is presented in figure 2.

6.2 Implementation

Once the decision is taken in principle, the project should be expanded to the minute detail and scheduled so that production loss/down time is the least. This is very important since any improvement project directly hits plant operation.

Once the project is in progress, it should be continuously monitored so as to maintain the schedule.

When plant is restarted after implementation of the project, operation is monitored very closely and the results are compared with the initial predictions.


- India is still lagging considerably on energy front compared to world standards.

- This gap can be narrowed provided management sincerely initiates energy projects and forms an exclusive EMC which shall work as an independent profit centre.

- EMC should be guided by an expert outside agency (ENERGY ADVISOR).

- This Exclusive Cell should be incumbered by very dedicated, highly motivated and enterprising engineers/staff.

- EMC has to work in a well coordinated manner with the production and maintenance group of running plants.

- Based on findings of energy audit, project(s) should be structured, evaluated and implemented in well planned and coordinated manner.

- Energy Audit should be repeated periodically for improvements.

It can be concluded that if attempted earnestly, benefits of energy projects are bound to outweigh input costs/efforts. It has to be borne in mind that energy projects can never be attempted departmentally with successful results because of conflicting interests/priorities. It has to be done by an exclusive cell assisted by an external specialist agency (ENERGY ADVISOR).

Figure 2. A typical energy conservation project