Environmentally friendly energy from biogas
Energy from farmer Reiner Graf's cogeneration facility in the immediate neighbourhood is used for the sustainable production of RAUCH machinery. The cogeneration facility is supplied by a biogas facility at the depot in Schwarzach, Germany. It is operated by 100% locally generated biomass with a primary energy factor (fp) of almost zero.
In addition to the 265 kW of electric energy that is fed right into the low voltage centre at the RAUCH factory, another 250 kW of heat output from the biogas engine is used to heat the RAUCH powder coating plant's degreasing facility. The RAUCH Service and Training Centre building has been heated with waste heat from the cogeneration facility since 2015. Two large buffer tanks were installed for this purpose. The tanks are filled with leftover heat that is no longer required by the degreasing facility. This investment led to an improvement in both efficiency and sustainability.
The new management building was built according to the KfW's 55 standard and connected to the biogas district heating system. Because of its dual use for electricity and heat, the biogas engine has an efficiency rate of 85%.
This uses the biogas more efficiently, which is also better for the environment. And RAUCH's innovative biogas concept also supports regional agriculture.
Using renewable energies consciously with photovoltaics
As part of the "sustainable production and manufacturing" initiative, RAUCH started operating a photovoltaic facility at its Baden Airpark location back in 2014. The enormous facility consists of 1,728 solar panels on the 15,000 square-metre roof of the production hall. Under ideal conditions, its peak output is 440.6 kWp. This allows RAUCH to generate 12% of its own energy requirement in-house and Co2-neutrally with solar power.
With all of this in mind, it is no surprise that RAUCH was named one of the top agricultural engineering companies in Germany for environmental protection in the Lean & Green study by the Otto von Guericke University in Magdeburg, Germany. "A power supply from a raw biogas plant is a trendsetting example!"
RAUCH does everything with precision, including energy efficiency.
REDUCING ENERGY CONSUMPTION WITH HIGHLY EFFICIENT AND MODERN FIBRE LASER AND BENDING TECHNOLOGIES
Energy consumed by cutting was significantly reduced through the use of state-of-the-art fibre laser technology.
RAUCH is particularly proud of the three CNC-controlled bending presses and one automatic bending cell for large, heavy parts, relieving its staff of this physically demanding task. Thanks to precise bending of metal components, energy-intensive welding can be avoided. Workpiece stability is optimised by state-of-the-art 3D design programs for intelligent planning of edges. If welding is still necessary, the fumes generated are immediately aspirated and purified in a central filter facility.
RAUCH is setting new sustainability standards in sheet metal processing, too. Thanks to smart laser technology, the surfaces of all raw sheets are perfectly and intelligently used for cutting individual components.
Valuable scrap metal is reduced to a minimum and recycled in steel processing, ensuring that raw material resources are used as efficiently as possible.
NO EMISSIONS POWDER COATING PLANT
RAUCH's modern, environmentally-friendly powder coating plant operates completely free of emissions.
Its in-house vacuum water treatment facility means no waste water from washing and degreasing. The water is stored in tanks after being treated and fed back into the process when needed.
Harmful paint residue is also reduced to a minimum in the powder chamber. Powder that does not adhere to the workpiece is aspirated, purified and reintroduced into the coating process.
By using new chemicals, heat energy consumption in the pre-treatment facility was reduced by 40% in 2020. In 2021, gas consumption in the powder enamel furnace was reduced by 15% through the use of new powder coating technology. RAUCH's high-quality surface finish therefore contributes to the protection of both people and the environment.
SMART USE OF LOST HEAT AND ENERGY EFFICIENT LIGHTING
During winter operation, filtered and purified welding fumes can be redirected into the halls as warm air. This ensures a healthy, ideal working environment in the welding facilities and also manages to control emissions.
Waste process heat from the powder enamel furnace is used to heat the adhesive water dryer. The waste heat from all production facilities is reintroduced to heat the factory halls by ceiling fans. This means that it is not necessary to also heat the halls across the whole of production.
Using energy-efficient lighting with movement sensors further reduces electricity consumption in office, production and assembly areas.
PRESERVING RESOURCES WITH SMART PROCESSES AND OUR STAFF
Applying Kanban control cycles with reusable containers saves on wasteful cardboard packaging. The containers cycle between suppliers and the assembly lines multiple times.
Hundreds of thousands of sheets of paper are saved annually through digitised production drawings and worklists on production machinery, paperless picking and reducing paper on workshop orders.
Getting staff involved with the topic of environmentally-friendly production led to numerous suggestions for improvement with the goal of reducing packaging and waste. These were implemented as a community. Wastefully packaged purchased parts were analysed in insourcing projects and manufactured in-house instead.