Monday, 23 April 2012 08:30

Ecolab's behind the Scenes Innovation Drives Environmental Sustainability

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10 recent innovations empower global customers to preserve and protect Earth's resources

OnEarth Day, more than one million facilities around the world will be saving water and reducing energy use through innovations developed byEcolab, the global leader in water, hygiene and energy technologies and services. The company's products and services are used in hotels, restaurants, manufacturing plants, hospitals, refineries and many other locations to provide and protect clean water, safe food, abundant energy and healthy environments.

"Our more than 22,000 sales-and-service representatives around the world combine their expertise with our pioneering technology to deliver positive environmental outcomes for customers and society," said Doug Baker, chairman and chief executive officer, Ecolab.

Ecolab has long been a leader in the development of products and services that provide outstanding results while reducing environmental impact. One of the company's earliest innovations, introduced in 1928, was a dispenser to efficiently control chemical use and reduce waste. The company's long history of innovation continues today with a number of award-winningEcolab programs designed to produce superior results while reducing water, energy, labor and disposal impacts. These include:

3D TRASAR technology for cooling water, a U.S. Presidential Green Chemistry Award winner, saved customers nearly 93 billion gallons of water worldwide in 2011. The technology combines chemistry, remote services and sophisticated monitoring and control to improve a number of industrial operations. It is being expanded to other uses including boiler water and reverse osmosis membrane treatment, saving even more water and reducing energy use.

DryExx dry conveyor lubricant eliminates the water used in conveyors for glass packaging in beverage, brewing and food processing, reducing water use by as much as 500,000 gallons annually per production line. In a typical five-line plant, DryExx can save more than 2.5 million gallons per year. Dryer plant floors also enhance worker safety. It won Best Product design at the 2011 JustMeans Social Innovation Awards.

Aquanomic laundry system utilizes innovative wash processes and low-temperature chemistry to reduce water and energy consumption by up to 40 percent while providing clean, white and soft results. It received a Minnesota High Tech Association Cleantech Tekne Award, presented to businesses that manufacture environmentally sound solutions that reduce costs, inputs, energy consumption, waste or pollution.

PARETO mixing technology is a patented, engineered system that enhances chemical performance by optimizing the injection of chemical additives into industrial process streams. Initially launched in the papermaking industry, it saved customers more than 2 billion gallons of water and nearly 900 billion BTUs of energy in 2011. It is now expanding rapidly into new industrial applications including waste water treatment.

Apex Conveyor dish machine is designed to reduce water use and recapture heat, resulting in utility savings of up to 50 percent. The Apex Conveyor dish machine recycles heat, replenishes the wash-tank automatically and without interruption, and cleans and thoroughly de-limes itself automatically using an innovative, patent pending process. This innovative dish machine received the 2011 Kitchen Innovation Award from the National Restaurant Association.

BrightWaterTechnology is a patented nanoparticulate chemistry that increases production from existing oil reservoirs. Recovering up to an additional 5 percent of the original oil in place, this easy to implement and cost-effective technology reduces the need for drilling additional wells and extends the life of current oil reservoirs.

Envirocid Plus Clean In Place cleaner uses a patent-pending, blended acid formulation that helps reduce total phosphorus and nitrates in food processing plant effluent. It was named a 2011 International Dairy Foods Association Innovation Sustainability Award winner.

Excelerate ZTF zero trans-fat cleaning program supports food processors use of healthier zero trans-fat oils. However using these oils has the unexpected consequence of coating processing equipment and environmental surfaces with a stubborn residue. Ecolab's solution cleans this in half the time of other cleaning methods, improving the cleanliness of food processing environments. It was winner of an Institute of Food Technologists 2011 Food Expo Innovation Award.

Encompass Environmental Hygiene program provides healthcare facilities with a proven approach to improve the cleanliness of operating rooms and patient rooms, reducing the risk of infections. The process minimizes the amount of water and chemistry used during the cleaning and disinfecting process, reducing water use by 80 percent. The training and education program for operating rooms has received the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) "Seal of Recognition" for meeting the guidelines set forth in AORN's Perioperative Standards and Recommended Practices.

COIL-FLO coil cleaning technology deep cleans and disinfects the coils in building heating and cooling systems. It helped the Fayetteville Veterans Administration Medical Center in North Carolina win a VA Sustainability award for reducing energy use and avoiding more than 1,900 tons of carbon emissions.

Ecolab has a strong commitment to innovation with 5,800 patents and 1,300 researchers; including 500 Ph.Ds., working in a network of 15 facilities located around the world. Over the past five years, the company has invested $750 million in R&D to develop programs to create cleaner, safer and healthier environments while helping reduce energy, water and natural resource consumption, enhance air quality, and minimize environmental impacts.

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