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Business News: 06-03-13 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Sentinel-Tribune Staff   
Monday, 03 June 2013 10:35
Cooper-Standard received an Environmental Stewardship Award this month, following a large-scale lighting retrofit project that will dramatically reduce Cooper-Standard's energy spend while benefiting the environment.
Contemporary Energy Solutions and installation partner Thomann Electric completed the project, which involved replacing 638 hot-burning, energy-draining 400-watt metal halide HID fixtures with 628 Orion Energy Systems fluorescent fixtures. CES also added motion controls onto 70 of the fixtures.
Cooper-Standard is projected to save more than $80,000 a year in lighting electricity costs. In addition, this dramatic reduction in electricity use will translate into 1.1 million kWh savings and 670 tons of carbon dioxide indirectly being removed from the atmosphere.
CES representatives Tony and Romano Vlastelica presented Cooper-Standard officials with the Environmental Stewardship Award. The ESA is given to companies that significantly benefit the environment through significant reductions in energy use.
"The lighting is so much brighter on the floor, it's unbelievable," said Robert Huey, plant manager of the 173,000 square foot facility in Bowling Green. "For safety reasons, it's huge. Having lighting that's so much brighter, you can see every nook and cranny in the place now. Safety will improve as a result."
Huey added that quality control at Cooper-Standard, which produces automotive parts such as rubber seals and primary door seals, has also improved. He said Tony and Romano Vlastelica used a light meter to show that the new fluorescent fixtures were producing between 39-42 foot-candles - compared to 15-17 with the old HID system. The motion controls will add to the savings and modernize the facility. The controls in that area of the plant will turn off fixtures after 15 minutes when there is no activity in the area. Huey noted that the new fluorescents instantly reach full brightness when re-activated, while the old metal halide HID fixtures required 15-30 minutes of re-strike time and therefore were not controls-compatible.
"I can tell you that employee morale is up," Huey said. "People are happy about coming into a place that's this well-lit. They feel good about it. I didn't realize how big a factor that would be but it really has been."
The rebate will help Cooper-Standard achieve payback in about 1.5 years.

First Solar's Perrysburg Township facility has done it again.
The Tempe, Ariz.-based solar energy company announced in April that tests conducted by the U.S. Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory confirmed they set a record of 16.1 percent total area module efficiency for their cadmium-telluride (CdTe) solar module.
The prior record was 14.4 percent, which First Solar set in January.
First Solar maintains a research and development center in Perrysburg Township, which developed and manufactured the module.
In late February, the company announced a world record in efficiency for another product, a CdTe solar cell, which was also created at the Township facility.

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