Green Energy

Clean Energy at the Airport

May 22 2017 Read 524 Times

Lufthansa Technik moves to decentralised power plants for electricity and refrigeration.
At its site in Puerto Rico, Lufthansa Technik uses clean energy obtained from biomass available in the region: Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico and ENTRADE today announced a comprehensive energy supply contract. The first two trigeneration* power plants (55 kW power; 100 kW refrigeration each) will come into operation in May 2017 in 2x20-foot containers, which will be visually inconspicuous next to the two aircraft hangars at the state-of-the-art overhaul site. The key advantage for Lufthansa Technik is the reliable and on-demand energy supply that is replacing expensive power from diesel.

Lufthansa Technik AG is the global market leader in MRO (maintenance, repair and overhaul) services for aircraft. Since 2014, the company has been steadily expanding its state-of-the-art site at Rafael Hernandéz Airport in the west of Puerto Rico, and more than 350 people now work there.

The facilities in the two aircraft hangars for five medium-range aircraft include a painting line. Excessive temperatures and the resulting failure of the power supply are extremely critical here. “To date we have been using diesel generators to minimise the risk of power failures. The energy supply in Puerto Rico is comparatively expensive and is not 100% reliable”, says Elmar Lutter, CEO of Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico. “That’s why we were looking for a viable alternative.”

The Cleantech company ENTRADE operates worldwide as a decentralised energy supplier in association with the American investor arensis Corp. The two companies supply power to the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator building, as well as several industrial companies in one of Europe’s largest business parks near Liverpool. In the Japanese Prefecture of Fukushima, clean energy from ENTRADE is used for heating the water and some of the rooms at a spa resort.

The Type E3 power plants can be integrated into standard containers and operate with different kinds of biomass. In Puerto Rico, pellets based on waste wood produced in the region will initially be used as the fuel for environmentally friendly energy generation. The cooperation will involve investigating the scope for using aircraft waste (catering waste) directly from the airport. Catering waste currently has to be disposed of and this is very expensive.

“At all Lufthansa Technik sites, both resource conservation and emission reduction play a major role in achieving corporate objectives”, says Elmar Lutter, CEO of Lufthansa Technik Puerto Rico. “The emission-free ENTRADE power plants are the perfect fit - using fuels like waste wood direct from the surrounding area. We were also impressed by the combined supply of power and refrigeration - it’s well known that we have more than enough heat.” 

From ENTRADE's perspective, the close cooperation with Lufthansa Technik is a significant milestone. Cooperation talks are also in progress with representatives from the considerably larger site in Manila (Philippines).

“On the one hand, Lufthansa Technik’s high profile makes it a hugely valuable partner for us - with the 30 sites offering major potential, particularly in warmer regions”, says ENTRADE CEO, Julien Uhlig. “On the other hand, our first presence in the immediate vicinity of an airport will raise our profile among this customer segment globally.”

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