“The key is to save energy with energy efficient technologies”

Learning Center - Cold Room

Danfoss is a world leader with over 80 years of experience in research, development and production of energy efficient technologies, making modern living possible through Climate and Energy solutions.

Ravichandran Purushothaman, President, Danfoss in India, speaks to Renu Rajaram on their green missions and efforts towards reducing carbon footprint.

Ravichandran Purushothaman

Ravichandran Purushothaman

Excerpts from the interview:


Tell us briefly on Danfoss’ latest cost-effective application solutions and products that can help lower the power consumption?
Danfoss has a range of applications that help conserve energy in cold storage, refrigerants and power electronics in a cost effective manner. The most recent innovation in the Power Electronics Portfolio of Danfoss is theVLT ® AutomationDrive FC 360, which finds application across industries such as mining, textile, manufacturing and processing industries, Data Centres and even the automation industry among others. In addition to its energy conservation properties, FC 360 does not contain lead, cadmium, hexavalent chrome, mercury or flame retardant PBB and PBDE, making it very environment friendly.

ADAP-KOOL® range of Control Systems is a relatively new entrant in the market too and caters largely to the retail market. Its application can reduce energy consumption by up to 33 per cent in refrigeration systems alone. And the potential savings are even higher if one chooses to control additional utilities like lighting and HVAC. Around the world, more than 50,000 ADAP-KOOL® supermarket installations already operate to improve food quality and benefit energy consumption.

In the Commercial Compressors business OptymaTM Slim Pack, the new condensing unit designed to fit into a light and compact housing, has already found great acceptance in the milk capital of India-Gujarat with many milk societies installing these applications in their plants to lower their total life cycle costs. Additionally the Refrigeration VLT Drive cuts the external component count, integrates easily into existing system and makes motors energy efficient thereby improving the energy balance of the overall refrigeration system and reducing its environmental footprint.
All our products across PE, RC and CC portfolios are designed to conserve energy.


Please brief on Danfoss’ contributions towards a green world? How do you ensure that your products are not adding to the carbon footprint?
Our products reduce carbon footprint instead of adding to it. As a company, from an industry perspective, Danfoss is trying to ensure that there is strong awareness on energy efficiency and the use of energy efficient products. When you are in a stage where producing more energy is a grave challenge, its conservation is the next best fuel to run on. The beginning of this journey starts with stakeholder education. Today the shift to natural refrigerants is still being deliberated in specific applications only because users are not aware of safety standards and requirements. With adequate training and adoption of right technology, shifts such as these can help considerably reduce the country’s carbon footprint.
In order to educate customers, owners and other stakeholders on applications, Danfoss has set up a Refrigeration and Air Conditioning learning Centre in Chennai which houses a two Stage Ammonia Cooling Unit. The Centre focuses on facilitating knowledge transfer about Danfoss technologies, its applications and value added services to customers and partners who can register themselves for the e-learning courses or even visit the Centre to gain hands-on experience in handling these new to world technologies and feel enabled to make informed decisions within their businesses that can help lower the GWP of our country.
Danfoss’ focus is to help improve automation levels that help in both energy efficiency and productivity, thereby enabling the profitability of our customers. In addition to improving the overall efficiency of the System, our valves, drives and electronic controllers help users better adhere to safety standards by reducing leaks and training stakeholders on best practices.
Our customers are our best endorsers. A cold storage at Kartarpur, in the state of Punjab, India is extensively using VLT® drives and soft starters for its refrigeration plant. Surprisingly, you will find the drives installed on screw compressors, refrigerant pumps and evaporator fans. The condenser pumps have been fitted with Danfoss MCD soft starters. A total of 22 VLT® drives and five MCD soft starters have been installed in this plant. Mr. Kunwar Charanjit Singh, owner of this cold storage, is a very happy man today as the electricity bill for the plant has been reduced by 50 percent after the installation of the drives
In another case, Efficiency increases and energy savings go hand in hand at Jindal Polyfilms in India. In 2009 the Company installed Danfoss VLT® HVAC drives to control the chillers that ensure the correct water temperature throughout the production process. Today, these chillers use 25-30 per cent less energy.


Buildings consume 40 per cent of the total energy produced. Please explain the need of inclusive measures by both public and private sector and the Government to produce desirable results in the development of energy saving buildings?

In India energy is not correctly priced and hence our focus to get conscious on energy efficiency is still in its early stages. Two thirds of India is yet to be built and unless we embrace technologies which are energy efficient, it will have adverse impact on sustainability.

Corporates and industrial entities are not the only ones who own infrastructure. Infrastructure can be owned by governments, corporates, as well as private entrepreneurs. The uptake of energy efficient technologies can definitely help corporates and organizations reduce their energy footprint. The Bureau of Energy Efficiency has been driving the labeling of energy efficient buildings. There are international bodies that are accrediting buildings with platinum and gold ratings for sustainability and the use of sustainability in the creation of new infrastructure. From our experience, a number of companies in India are trying to use these concepts through creating green buildings, green hotels or green airports. To enable the deployment of these concepts, green products and technologies that can truly deliver energy efficiency are required. Essentially, this segment of the market is relatively an easy target because there is a regulatory body (like BEE) and a number of corporates who want to responsibly create infrastructure.
The key is to save energy with energy efficient technologies that can be implemented in existing & new buildings and the industry at large. Danfoss is in the process of influencing minds to shift to smarter technologies that are not only sustainable but also viable. Our technologies enable this shift. For example, we have proven technologies such as District Cooling which can be used by both Government and private industry.


Please tell us about your company’s Green credentials?

Danfoss being Danish in lineage is working towards replicating a zero waste work environment at its new upcoming facility in Oragadam. While on the one hand our products reduce other companies’ energy consumption, internally we ensure we are environment friendly in our production practices. The platinum rating that Danfoss has received for its manufacturing plant in Oragadam Chennai is testimony to the fact that we care internally too about the noise we make in the environment. Innovation by design is a key factor that has enabled this including energy efficient structural glazing, re-use of construction waste generated either within the site or disposing to recycler, using recycled material as much as possible, insulated roofs to minimize heat ingress, and on site renewable energy 1MW solar plant planned and this will produce 1.5 million unit per annum.


What is the investment and revenue from India and could your please compare the same with your global business?

We recorded 100 million in sales last year and are currently investing 100 million USD in India, predominantly towards product manufacturing, infrastructure development and R&D Capabilities. The Indian market ranks 11 for Danfoss globally.


Tell us about Danfoss India’s plan to invest Rs 500 crore by 2015 to expand production and R&D and about Rs 17 crore Chennai facilities?

‘India 2015’ is Danfoss India’s growth outline for the coming years. We go wherever growth takes us. We look to tap further into the fast growing Indian market and increase sales three fold by 2015. A pivotal part of this strategy is to build a combined manufacturing, R&D and sales campus in the near future that will serve as Danfoss India’s future headquarters.

The investment of 17 crore for the factory in Sholinganallur is for the manufacture filter-driers for refrigeration and air-conditioning units, 80 per cent of which will be for the overseas market. The plant spread across 10,000 square feet, is built to have a capacity of two million pieces a year.

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