Lean Six Sigma in Alternative Energy
As per the industry classification benchmark, this industry sector includes the following subsectors –
Renewable Energy Equipment – Companies that develop or manufacture renewable energy equipment utilizing sources such as solar, wind, tidal, geothermal hydro, and waves.
Alternative Fuels – Companies that produce alternative fuels such as ethanol, methanol, hydrogen and bio fuels that are mainly used to power vehicles, and companies that are involved in the production of vehicle fuel cells and/or the development of alternative fuelling infrastructure.
Case Study Description
Problems due to extreme weather conditions are not new to the wind turbine industry. When high speed winds carry ice, snow, and fog, technical problems are likely to develop. One of the common problems is failure of turbine’s anemometer. When the anemometer failure occurs, the information on wind direction and force does not get relayed to the huge blades. This leads to inefficient usage of wind energy leading to energy losses and downtime.
Designed experiments were taken up by the R&D team of a large wind energy company to address this issue. Through several weeks of experimentation in simulated conditions, it was found that heating circuit design was the critical factor that needed change. New controls were introduced with the changed circuit design. Five day tests were made mandatory in several simulated conditions for each anemometer to be approved. Mistake proofing was done to eliminate the possibility connector’s attachment with junction box. On implementation of the improved design at all affected sites, no defects were found in several months that followed.
Feedback from participants
It was a knowledge gaining training with a good layout of various topics in detail.
– Raghuram K, Senior Engineer Six Sigma, LM Wind Power
The green belt training by Benchmark is taught in a very effective and simple manner. Their strength lies in the way they deliver the fundamental concepts in a very simple manner for anyone to understand it easily.
– J.S Arun, Engineer, Vestas Wind Technology