Margins improving for waste heat business
by Jon Mainwaring
Significant savings in terms of both carbon emissions and energy costs can be achieved simply by analysing energy-hungry activities and making them more efficient. In the automotive industry, companies like BMW and GM are looking at ways of capturing waste heat from a car’s exhaust and transforming it into electricity. Such projects are likely to play an important part in making electric and hybrid vehicles a viable option for motorists.
In the industrial sector, businesses are already making huge savings in their operating costs by capturing waste heat and doing something useful with it. However, plenty more still needs to be done. The amount of energy currently lost in industrial processes is so great that it is estimated the US could generate 20% of all its electricity simply by using existing technologies to capture the energy that industry wastes (source: EPA).
A handful of engineering firms around the world are developing technologies designed to capture waste heat and turn it into alternative forms of energy. China Energy Recovery (CER), whose shares are quoted in the US on the OTC Bulletin Board, is one such firm.