Energy and resources are the basis for the manufacturing economy as well as a consuming society. Due to the increasing global demand for energy and the equally strong growth in demand for fossil and renewable raw materials, the availability of energy and these materials must be ensured in order to keep the competitiveness of manufacturing companies. In recent years, companies have begun to rethink their approach and ecological goals are increasingly being anchored in corporate strategies. Companies are not only concerned with the energy efficiency of the produced goods, but also with the energy efficiency potential of their value-adding activities in manufacturing and logistics.
The project partners are anticipating to approach these challenges and to provide future users with manageable methods and tools for evaluating energy efficiency in production and logistics scenarios and for optimizing the energy requirements across the entire supply chain.
Method and research approach
The main goal of the E2-Design project is to enable companies to take energy efficiency into account as an additional target parameter. In addition to the classic performance and cost parameters energy efficiency should be considered appropriately in the strategic and tactical planning phases of value-added networks. For this purpose, a toolbox for the energy-efficient design of production and logistics networks is to be developed and made accessible to the general public. The procurement, production and distribution processes are considered. The production is included, because of its dynamic behaviour, which frequently leads to recurrent changes in production networks.
The consolidated research results (e.g. guidelines, methods, process models, IT-demonstrators) are to be used cooperatively by operators of large production networks and by the SMEs integrated into these networks in order to optimize energy efficiency across the entire supply chain. The results of the research project should, for example, favour an energy-optimized choice of location or a selection of energy-saving supply strategies and modes of transport in the network. This leads to a significant reduction in energy consumption in the production of more complex goods in Germany.