What do MTU gensets have to do with car safety belts or tyre pressure? The Micronas company based in Freiburg makes semi-conductors which are used as sensors by the automotive industry. In production, it uses a CHP plant based on MTU Onsite Energy gensets for heat, electrical power and cooling. The AE 12V Series 4000 L33 gensets are each equipped with a 400 V generator delivering 1,287 kW power. Thermal energy up to 1,323 kW at each genset is mainly harnessed from the engine cooling water and exhaust gas. "Installation of other systems such as oxidation catalysts and exhaust gas heat exchangers make for even better fine-tuning of the CHP plant," explained Peter Grüner from gas system sales at MTU Onsite Energy.
Production with high power demand
Micronas needs the energies mentioned above for production in what are known as 'cleanrooms'. These are rooms that must be kept absolutely sterile for making semi-conductors from silicon wafers. Automobile manufacturers such as Toyota then install the semi-conductors in cars. However, their manufacture is a complex, and extremely energy-intensive process. The clean rooms must be kept – all year round – at a constant temperature of 22°, with 45% air humidity. The rooms are also equipped with large extractor units working round the clock to remove dust from the air.
Waste heat recovery
Parallel to production, heat discharged from the MTU gensets is used for cooling. Using the co-generation principle, chillers are used to produce cold water from the waste heat for cooling purposes. That means that the discharged heat is used optimally, facilitating an overall efficiency of 88%. With the help of the CHP plant, plus a rooftop solar power installation, Micronas can generate 35% of its electrical power requirement, 60% of its heat and 40% of its cooling capacity all by itself. "Our annual cost saving is so high that we will have covered our investment in about 4 years," said Micronas CEO Matthias Bopp. Besides the supply of gensets and components, Micronas has also signed a contract with MTU for a long-term full service package.
The content of the stories reflects the status as of the respective date of publication. They are not updated. Further developments are therefore not taken into account.