Foxconn develops carbon-reduction arm to save energy and promote carbon trading
Foxconn has made its carbon-reduction technology committee an independent company to develop its carbon saving and trading business. The company, Shenzhen Fox-Energy Technology, was created to replace inefficient equipment and explore the business potential of carbon trading.
The manufacturing behemoth, famed for its production of Apple products, has profited significantly from its investments in carbon reduction technologies.
Its Shenzhen division invested less than 50 million yuan (US$8 million) last year, yet managed to reduce Foxconn’s carbon emissions significantly. The company used just over one third of its allocated quota and earned around 10 million yuan (US$1.6 million) from selling the remaining part of its share.
Zhuang Chunyuan, Foxconn’s vice general manager, said the company has reaped financial rewards from carbon trading initiatives. Its Chinese divisions invested 532 million yuan (US$86 million) on 2,455 carbon reduction and energy-saving projects between 2010 and 2013, which reduced 1.07 billion yuan (US$174 million) worth of electricity costs and direct energy-saving benefits. The group's 45-million-yuan (US$7.3 million) energy-saving projects in Shenzhen saved around 200 million watts last year alone.
An auditing team has been set up to monitor the group's energy uses, which are broken down into 11 categories and 177 items, including lighting, air conditioning, water usage and more. As part of the initiative, individual departments could be fined if they significantly fail to meet their carbon reduction targets. The department that beats its target by the greatest amount also stands to be awarded up to 500,000 yuan (US$81,500) a year.
Shenzhen Fox-Energy Technology was formerly the group’s energy-saving technology committee between 2008 and 2013, but has now been assigned to manage and trade the group's carbon quotas as a separate entity.
Foxconn decided to made it an independent company after Chinese government decided to implement policy to promote energy saving and reducing carbon emissions.
The company now has 200 experts responsible for managing and reviewing energy uses and 28 senior carbon auditors. Foxconn has also assigned 800 part-time monitors across its business empires and centralized the management of equipment such as air conditioners, water coolers, air compressors and humidifiers to enhance efficiency, centralize maintenance and reduce energy consumption. Any equipment deemed not up to standard will be replaced.
The new initiative has the potential to reduce outgoings for electricity consumption, while giving the company the opportunity to sell its left over carbon quota.
Chunyuan is confident that now is the right time for the business to truly invest in its energy saving commitment. He has even called on the government to relax controls on the carbon-trading market and implement a more market-oriented environment for investors to profit from the trades.
Chunyuan said the group has been observing the government's carbon trading program and plans to sell its surplus quotas before the program drags down their prices. The company is also seeking to work with banks to explore the possibility of using the quotas to obtain financing.
Siemens: Providing the First Industrial 5G Router
Across a number of industry sectors, there’s a growing need for both local wireless connectivity and remote access to machines and plants. In both of these cases, communication is, more often than not, over a long distance. Public wireless data networks can be used to enable this connectivity, both nationally and internationally, which makes the new 5G network mainframe an absolutely vital element of remote access and remote servicing solutions as we move into the interconnected age.
Siemens Enables 5G IIoT
The eagerly awaited Scalance MUM856-1, Siemens’ very first industrial 5G router, is officially available to organisations. The device has the ability to connect all local industrial applications to the public 5G, 4G (LTE), and 3G (UMTS) mobile wireless networks ─ allowing companies to embrace the long-awaited Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).
The router can be used to remotely monitor and service plants, machines, as well as control elements and other industrial devices via a public 5G network ─ flexibly and with high data rates. Something that has been in incredibly high demand after being teased by the leading network providers for years.
Scalance MUM856-1 at a Glance
- Scalance MUM856-1 connects local industrial applications to public 5G, 4G, and 3G mobile wireless networks
- The router supports future-oriented applications such as remote access via public 5G networks or the connection of mobile devices such as automated guided vehicles in industry
- A robust version in IP65 housing for use outside the control cabinet
- Prototypes of Siemens 5G infrastructure for private networks already in use at several sites
“To ensure the powerful connection of Ethernet-based subnetworks and automation devices, the Scalance MUM856-1 supports Release 15 of the 5G standard. The device offers high bandwidths of up to 1000 Mbps for the downlink and up to 500 Mbps for the uplink – providing high data rates for data-intensive applications such as the remote implementation of firmware updates. Thanks to IPv6 support, the devices can also be implemented in modern communication networks.
Various security functions are included to monitor data traffic and protect against unauthorised access: for example, an integrated firewall and authentication of communication devices and encryption of data transmission via VPN. If there is no available 5G network, the device switches automatically to 4G or 3G networks. The first release version of the router has an EU radio license; other versions with different licenses are in preparation. With the Sinema Remote Connect management platform for VPN connections, users can access remote plants or machines easily and securely – even if they are integrated in other networks. The software also offers easy management and autoconfiguration of the devices,” Siemens said.
Preparing for a 5G-oriented Future
Siemens has announced that the new router can also be integrated into private 5G networks. This means that the Scalance MUM856-1 is, essentially, future-proofed when it comes to 5G adaptability; it supports future-oriented applications, including ‘mobile robots in manufacturing, autonomous vehicles in logistics or augmented reality applications for service technicians.’
And, for use on sites where conditions are a little harsher, Siemens has given the router robust IP65 housing ─ it’s “dust tight”, waterproof, and immersion-proofed.
The first release version of the router has an EU radio license; other versions with different licenses are in preparation. “With the Sinema Remote Connect management platform for VPN connections, users can access remote plants or machines easily and securely – even if they are integrated in other networks. The software also offers easy management and auto-configuration of the devices,” Siemens added.