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Shedding Light on Foundries

A European company has manufactured the world’s first LED lamp specifically designed for the harsh conditions in foundries. Foundry Trade Journal’s Lynn Postle met with Bostjan Bedene, director of Smart Energy Solutions Lighting (SES-Lighting) of Slovenia to discuss the product’s capabilities.

The new products for the foundry market include LED high bay fixtures and gantry crane lights to replace inefficient traditional lighting and high pressure sodium. The efficiency of LED diodes is much greater than that of classic filament lights which places LED lighting at the forefront of future lighting requirements.

Although it has taken some time for advances in the technology to make the option viable for many foundries, Bedene says the time is right now to make the investment. “LED is not a new technology,” he said. “It is over a hundred years old but it is now a much more cost-effective option than before. There used to be a five to ten year payback following the investment and now it is around two years.”

One foundry which has embraced the desire for more energy efficient lighting is Litostroj Steel Group Ltd in Slovenia which installed the technology at its Semco Foundry. In three production bays, 107 mercury lamps, with a total consumption of 460w were replaced with 120w beLine® lamps. With the lamps operating 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, the total reduction in electricity costs is around €55,000 a year. 

“We have been leading the way with research and our engineers are constantly working on further developing the technology,” Bedene told Foundry Trade Journal. “The price of lamps has reduced by half and we can pass this on to the customer so now we are witnessing more foundries wanting to adopt the technology which is competitive to other types of lighting. Other lighting also needs replacing more frequently and requires maintenance, whereas our lights have lifespans of 100,000 hours, give good illumination and require no maintenance.”

Bedene confirmed that greater results are achieved in conditions where the ceiling height is high. “The highest level we have installed the lamps was in a steel facility, not a foundry, but that was 32 metres and they witnessed almost four times better illumination and 75 per cent electricity savings.”

Developed in line with environmental concerns, SES-Lighting says it is proud that beLine® technology reduces Co2 emissions by up to 90 per cent.

SES-Lighting has developed a good reputation in Slovenia and its products are internationally certified so the company has undertaken projects in other parts of the world, including Italy, Poland, Sweden and India. “There is huge potential for this globally as it has been designed as a niché product for ‘dirty’ environments. We are also looking to ensure they can work in even greater temperatures and are investigating new markets. We are happy to work with the end user or use distributors. The product is suitable for the whole world and can be modified to suit different regions such as India, Japan, Europe and the US.”

The company is preparing to conduct a foundry survey and anyone interested in taking part should contact Bostjan Bedene direct on email: [email protected] 
The company is also interested in discussing options with suppliers keen to add this type of product to their range.

The Future
The company is now on the third generation of the beLine® lamps which offer improved benefits such as longer lifespan, thanks to an improved cooling system; more efficient installation; improved vibration and lightning strike resistance as they are more robust.

Bedene said: “A key feature of all SES-Lighting products is high-quality design and construction, as the cost reduction benefits of LED lighting can only be achieved through long-term product reliability. Because they are designed for industrial use, the service life of SES-Lighting LED products is typically far longer than cheaper LED alternatives. They require minimal maintenance and carry five-year parts, performance guarantee which also includes the power supply.”

Contact (International): Bostjan Bedene, SES-Lighting, Tel: +386 (0) 30 453 901, email:[email protected] web:
Contact (UK & Ireland): Richard Williams, SES-Lighting UK, Tel: 01886 880088, email:[email protected] 

Lease a Light
Thanks to the Foundry Energy Efficiency Fund, foundries in the UK can now lease a light through Mercantile Investors. The LED Light Leasing contract is for a total of 60 months with 36 monthly payments with foundries paying nothing for the last 24 months of the contract and no upfront capital investment.

For full details contact Richard Williams, Tel: 01886 880088, email: [email protected]