During the lockdown of 2020, we saw a lower-than-normal demand for electricity, but last year’s economic recovery greatly increased energy consumption and sent prices skyrocketing. In parts of Europe, the wholesale price for electricity more than tripled in 2021, reaching the highest level in decades. In fact, some say this record-breaking surge in energy prices threatens to derail the whole post-pandemic economic recovery and even slow down the transition to more sustainable production.
One industry segment that has to battle the soaring energy costs are tube and pipe producers.
“Unfortunately, we can’t do anything about the price of electricity, but we can definitely help you cut your power consumption”, says Grzegorz Korzuszek. “After raw materials, energy is always the main cost to anyone in the tube and pipe industry”, he points out. “So, don’t let that energy go to waste by using poor quality impeders!”
Looking at the energy crunch from another perspective, it is positive that producers are seeking to become more energy-efficient – and thereby more eco-friendly – by improving their production process and investing in better machines.
“We’re obviously happy to assist anyone wishing to do so”, Grzegorz says. “However, green investment doesn’t always have to be costly, sometimes all it takes to save energy is the right impeders.”
The Managing Director of EFD Induction Poland is eager to tell all tube and pipe producers about this excellent product which will help them cut their electricity costs.
Impeders are an integral and critical component in the pipe welding process. Often neglected, they can cost your business substantial amounts of money if they are not properly designed and manufactured, and correctly selected. Unfortunately, tube and pipe producers often opt to save money on impeders, thinking there is minimal difference between the best and the not-so-good. That is not the case!
“Do you know that not having the correct ferrite length can increase welding power consumption by thirty percent?”, Grzegorz asks. “That quickly becomes an expensive way to save a few Euros.”
A good impeder will effectively increase the impedance of the parasitic current path around the inside circumference of the pipe, ensuring the power is directed into the weld vee. In addition, it concentrates the magnetic flux created in the work coil, so that more energy is induced into the pipe.
The design and placement of the impeder can drastically affect the efficiency of the weld. Impeders from EFD Induction’s consumables company, EHE Consumables, have the highest quality ferrite grade to give optimum efficiency and stability during the production process.
“A major producer in Turkey actually reported 28,000 Euros annual energy savings on five tube mills after changing to our HPI ferrite cores”, Grzegorz smiles. “And, another one of our customers reduced their welding power consumption by 15 percent after installing a large diameter rectangular cluster impeder system on a 24” pipe mill”, he continues. “That was a massive 225 kW saving!”
The life expectancy of impeders must also be taken into account when trying to keep costs down. Usually, the time it takes to change an impeder costs considerably more than the impeder itself, so durability is important.
“We all know that downtime can be hugely expensive, so our impeders are made to last”, Grzegorz assures us. “The impeder design ensures effective cooling and good thermal endurance, whilst a good casing protects the ferrite from mechanical damage.”