BRENTWOOD, U.K. – Ford has halved the amount of water and energy it uses in making its new EcoBlue diesel at its largest global diesel engine plant.
The Dagenham Engine Plant produced the first 2.0L EcoBlue in April and boasts among the lowest water usage per engine of any of its worldwide manufacturing facilities and about half the amount used to produce the previous 1.8L TDCi diesel.
That amounts to an anticipated annual saving of 4.6 million gallons (17.5 million L) of water compared with 2011 – enough to fill seven Olympic-size swimming pools.
The improvements come from a reduction in the volume of coolant pumped around the plant. Three smaller coolant systems require around 70% less energy and contribute to reducing energy use per engine from 188 kWh in 2011 to 92 kWh in 2016 – enough to power an average home for a week, while LED lighting will help reduce energy consumption almost 750,000 kWh each year.
Minimum quantity lubrication machining tools, which replace high volumes of coolant with fine mists of oil to cool, lubricate and clean during the metalworking process, use 99.8% less water than the machining tools they replace and are expected to account for annual water savings of almost 4.2 million gallons (16 million L).
“Ever since Henry Ford first introduced the moving assembly line Ford has been at the forefront of manufacturing innovation, and our new Dagenham facility is no exception,” says Linda Cash, vice president-manufacturing, Ford of Europe. “Ford is using the latest technologies to ensure our all-new EcoBlue diesel engine production meets the highest standards for sustainability and makes a significant contribution to our global environmental targets.”
The Dagenham site also is home to the Dagenham Diesel Centre, which produces small-capacity diesel engines and is where the new EcoBlue was designed and engineered.
EcoBlue production capacity initially will be 350,000 units per year with one engine produced every 30 seconds. The second phase of engine production is scheduled to start in 2017, with the first installation in Ford cars planned for 2018. The added capacity of up to 150,000 units for this phase brings total annual capacity for the all-new engine range to 500,000 units.
The new 2.0L EcoBlue diesel is offered in the new Ford Transit and Transit Custom commercial vehicles, featuring friction-reducing innovations that claim a 13% improvement in fuel efficiency.
Ford is targeting a 30% reduction in greenhouse gas per vehicle produced between 2010 and 2025 globally, and looks to further reduce the amount of water used per vehicle, having achieved its goal of a 30% reduction between 2009 and 2015.