Using Heat Efficiently
STIHL pays particular attention to efficient use of resources in its production processes. For us, this also includes avoiding as far as possible the waste heat that occurs in production. After all, the conversion from a different form of energy into waste heat is generally an irreversible process. If we need heat for a production process, we design its use as efficiently as possible – even beyond the normal industrial standards.
One example of this is the insulation of the band heaters in plastics processing. In the production of plastic components, the plastic granulate is first melted and then injected into a mold. The band heaters of the injection molding units used not to be thermally insulated and transferred their heat not only to the granulate but also to the surroundings. The band heaters needed to be insulated in order to reduce waste heat and energy consumption. Working together with a supplier, STIHL developed its own solution: segmented insulation of individual band heaters. With this solution only individual segments have to be replaced during maintenance operations or in the case of damage, while the remaining segments can be left in place. The solution was so efficient that the labor and material costs involved were recovered within a year.
It was for this project that STIHL was honored, as one of 100 firms, for its efficient use of resources. The initiative "100 companies for efficient use of resources in Baden-Württemberg" is one of the most significant activities of the "Alliance for more efficient use of resources", which was set up between the state government and leading trade associations in 2013. The aim is to have companies focus more on saving resources and promoting environmental protection. The award goes to companies who prove in practice that prudent use of resources can be worthwhile for the business and the environment.