The system, the brainchild of a Cemex employee, has been trialled in Cemex’s UK cement operation, where it has performed effortlessly. Not only has the use of electricity to power the discharge equipment cut emissions, but it has enabled a faster turnaround and significantly quieter delivery. Longer-term, vehicle wear and tear are also reduced.
The benefit to the environment of incorporating this equipment into a commercial fleet is considerable; the trial has demonstrated a potential saving of over 4000kg of CO2 in a year per vehicle using the system, as well as 330 gallons of fuel.
Matthew Wild, vice president of Supply Chain and Procurement for Cemex EMEA, said: “We have been very impressed with the results of the initial trial of the electric discharge equipment in our cement business. Every single delivery that uses this system to discharge cement, rather than the tanker’s own fuel, saves 13.5kg of CO2; if this equipment was used across our fleet over a full year, the difference to our supply chain emissions would be considerable.”
The idea for this new discharge equipment came from Nigel Ponton, National Fleet Engineer for the UK business. He worked with supplier Gardner Denver to create the system, which is mounted onto the tractor unit and simply requires a three-phase connection to pressurise the tank and allow discharge to the silo. This means no additional equipment or investment is needed at the customer’s site.
Wild added: “We believe that every member of our workforce plays a role in ensuring we reach our goal of operating as a net zero company by 2050. The development and trial of this idea demonstrate that nurturing and investing in innovation in your business helps achieve your strategic priorities. Following the successful results of this trial, we are exploring incorporating it across our wider fleet while also looking at land-based units which can be housed at site.”
Cemex believes that true carbon neutrality can only be achieved by encouraging innovation and discovering breakthrough technologies. This is an important pillar of its dedicated climate action strategy; Future in Action.