Posted 14 September 2006 - 04:44 AM
That's correct kens.
I have bored many people with this story before and I apologize in advance if you've heard it, but it does make sense to repeat it in this context.
I once was asked to take over a project where a sawmill was retrofitting soft starters onto every motor 50HP and up. When I took over, they were 90% complete or so, I just finished the project and commissioning of the remaining 8 soft starters. After doing the last one, I was discussing the overall project with the plant engineer and asked him why he had undertaken such a task in the first place (hoping to capitalize with other sawmills on his reasoning). His answer shocked me. Turns out the first salesman to get involved sold him on the idea that this would reduce his peak demand charges. Like a fool, I immediately corrected him on that concept, explaining that they were not going to help. He proceeded to show me his utility bills and in fact, his demand charges WERE lower! I had to investigate and discovered that because his operators were no longer afraid of restarting machinery, they actually turned things Off when not in use, i.e. breaks, lunch, shift changes etc. More Off time, less energy, less demand dollars! The demand charge rate was still just as high because his peaks were just as high as ever. But because his overall electricity use was down, the associated demand charge dollar reduction was real, it just didn't come from the direction he thought it would.
"He's not dead, he's just pinin' for the fjords!"