Energy reduction project at Pfizer

Pfizer Improved Air Quality While Cutting Energy Costs

Project Profile

Systems:
300 complex air handling systems

Building: 
Pharmaceutical manufacturing and research facility

Environment:
Rural location 

Camfil won a supply and installation contract at the Pfizer Global Research and Development Campus in South East Kent, UK, that improves air quality and saves over £2 million.

Camfil have been working closely with the Capital Projects team at Pfizer Global Research and Development in Sandwich, Kent, to help them realise significant savings on their existing HVAC plant which serves a laboratory and R&D facilities on their 340-acre site. 

In 2006, Camfil undertook several trial installations in Pfizer building 500 that proved to be highly successful. Thanks to improved filter efficiency and reliability (fewer maintenance interventions), Pfizer achieved savings in energy as well as operational costs. As a result, they decided to roll out the solutions to another nine key buildings in 2009 as part of their site energy reduction initiatives.

Huge projected savings, quick ROI

For the nine buildings selected, savings are projected to be £2.1 million over 5 years, with a payback period of less than 10 months.

Under the project scope, the filter banks were to be replaced on a number of existing air handling units (AHUs). The work undertaken consisted of filter framework modification and renewal, installation of new gauges, deep-cleaning the AHUs and fitting high-efficiency/low-energy F7-grade air filters that were manufactured at Camfil's facility in Haslingden in Lancashire. In this particular case, Pfizer had two available options:

Option 1

No capital, just optimisation of current space to fit best available low-energy air filters.

Option 2

With capital to fit the lowest running cost option by fitting low-energy air filters and improving air quality from F7 to F9 Eurovent standards.

Pfizer wisely chose Option 2, and the first installation phase will be completed within the required timeframe and before the end of Pfizer’s financial year.

After first conducting a thorough air handling plant assessment, Camfil was able to accurately estimate the savings on filters, energy, labour and waste disposal.

David Mellon, who was overseeing the project on behalf of Pfizer and who was charged with implementing all capital projects at the Pfizer site related to energy reduction, said:

A patient in a scanner

“This prioritised energy-reduction project at the Pfizer site demonstrates that understanding the base criteria for running expensive HVAC plants is key to maintaining lean and agile facilities in the face of economic uncertainty and volatility in energy prices.

The fact that an air filter does not have a 3-pin plug on it does not mean that it does not affect energy consumption.

The more effective surface area presented to the air flow reduces resistance and therefore energy consumption. In this case it will be 17%.

Other benefits we at Pfizer now realise we've achieved, but that were not necessarily apparent until now, include reduced change frequency of the filters and thus less waste disposal, reduced energy consumption, reduced C02 emissions and of course saving Pfizer money!”