Alfa Laval and Microsoft to develop digital tools for heat exchangers


Swedish manufacturer Alfa Laval has signed a global collaboration agreement with US software giant Microsoft to develop digital tools that facilitate the servicing and maintenance of its portfolio of plate heat exchangers.

The new tools will use artificial intelligence (AI) to enable end users to determine if maintenance is needed and, if so, what kind, Alfa Laval said in a statement Dec. 13.

Alfa Laval specializes in heat transfer solutions, including brazed heat exchangers suitable for propane (R290) and CO2 (R744) requests. This includes the AXP82, launched in February 2021 and designed specifically for the CO2 applications; it has a new channel plate design, giving it a fatigue performance that exceeds the standards of previous Alfa Laval heat exchanger models.

“The service [tools] will also offer sustainability benefits, as estimates show that up to 2.5 percent of global CO emissions2 emissions could be avoided if heat exchangers currently installed in industrial processes were simply cleaned and maintained properly, ”the statement said.

“Through this agreement, we are able to create unique customer value with high availability,” said Thomas Møller, President of the Energy division of Alfa Laval. “We can make sure our heat exchangers are performing optimally and maximize customer uptime, which is good for both customers and the environment. ”

Proper maintenance of heat exchangers is also important for the longevity of refrigeration systems, as “properly maintained and maintained” Alfa Laval heat exchangers can operate for more than 20 years in industrial applications, the company noted.

Microsoft is not the only global player with which Alfa Laval is collaborating in an effort to reduce its carbon footprint. In 2019, Alfa Laval and Schneider Electric began to digitize Alfa Laval’s energy infrastructure. Collecting data on the energy consumption of all business divisions of Alfa Laval enables it to identify projects aimed at reducing energy consumption.

Earlier this year, Alfa Laval also launched a recycling program for its heat exchangers.

The company aims to become carbon neutral across its entire value chain by 2030.

In addition to its heat transfer solutions, Alfa Laval is also active in fluid handling and centrifugal separation. The company is active in more than 100 countries and has 16,700 employees. Annual sales in 2020 were SEK 41.5 billion (US $ 4.54 billion).

“With this agreement, we are able to create unique customer value with high availability. We can ensure that our heat exchangers are operating optimally and maximize customer uptime, which is good for both customers and the environment ”,

-Thomas Müller, Alfa Laval

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