European Technology Cooperation “SmartPM” for Energy Savings in Home Appliances, Healthcare and Medical Equipment Aims at Reduction of Electricity Wastage to a Minimum; Under Infineon Project Coordination
News Release of the European Technology Cooperation “SmartPM”
Neubiberg, Germany – September 8, 2009 – As awareness increases about climate change, stringent emission controls, dwindling energy resources and a rising demand for energy, it is more important than ever that the available electrical energy is consumed efficiently. Supporting this approach, together with 17 European partner companies Infineon Technologies (FSE: IFX / OTCQX: IFNNY) has formed the technology cooperation SmartPM (Smart Power Management in Home and Health) to bring down electrical waste to a minimum in home appliances, power supplies and in healthcare and medical equipment. Under the project coordination of Infineon, the companies are collaborating to significantly increase energy efficiency savings in appliances by up to 25 percent of the electrical energy consumption, without compromise to performance, while potentially reducing overall CO2 emission by 540 grams with every kilowatt hour of electrical energy saved. The European SmartPM technology cooperation includes companies and academic institutions from Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain and Sweden.
Among the devices with the highest electrical energy savings potentials today are electrical motors and power supplies such as used in servers, desktop and laptop computers, and battery chargers for mobile devices. For example, electronically controlled motor drives in household appliances such as refrigerators, air-conditioning systems, washing machines or dishwashers could see an increase of energy efficiency of up to 35 percent. According to several market research institutes, approximately up to 60 million server units shall be in operation until 2011. A server consumes an average of 600 W which corresponds to a global consumption of 36 GW. Even a reduction in demand by 1 percent, corresponding to 360 MW, would be equivalent to the capacity of a hydroelectric power station, whilst not forgetting that more efficient power supplies also have reduced cooling demands, further lowering the electrical energy consumption.
In the SmartPM project, the 18 companies will work together to develop system architectures, power modules, innovative design concepts for chip circuits including chip sets, chip memory, power management and specific driver ICs. The semiconductor technologies under investigation include silicon, Silicon-on-Insulator (SOI) and Silicon-Carbide (SiC). They cover different voltage ranges, including low voltage (up to 100 V), net voltage (120 V to 400 V) and high voltage (at least 1,000 V).
Applications benefiting from the SmartPM project
Home appliances including motor drives are, for example, washing machines (approximately 75 million units shipped annually worldwide, including washer-dryers); refrigerators (about 90 million shipped annually worldwide); fridge-freezers (about 9 million shipped annually worldwide); dishwashers (about 23 million units shipped annually worldwide); and room air conditioners (global unit shipments estimated at about 65 million) as well as power supplies for notebooks (about 130 million units shipped globally in 2008) and energy-efficient stand-by applications of Plasma and LCD displays and TVs (about 10 million units shipped in 2008). Medical equipments will include ultrasound echographs and X-Ray machines of which in 2008 about 95 million were produced worldwide.
The SmartPM project, which will finish in January 2012, has a total budget of approximately Euro 20 million, half of which is carried by the partners. It is supported by a financial grant of approximately Euro 3.3 million from the European Nanoelectronics Initiative Advisory Council (ENIAC) as part of the sub-program “SP4 Nanoelectronics for Energy & Environment” and of more than Euro 6 million from national funding agencies, such as the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF); the Belgian IWT; the French Ministère de l'Economie, des Finances et de l'Industrie; Secrétariat d'Etat à l'Industrie (STSI); Enterprise Ireland; the Italian Ministero Istruzione Università Ricerca; APRE Agenzia per la Promozione della Ricerca Europea; the Dutch SenterNovem; the Research Council of Norway; the Spanish DGI-Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia; and the Swedish Vinnova.
The SmartPM project partners
The SmartPM project participants are, in alphabetical order, semiconductor, power module and software companies, manufacturers of motor drives and medical equipment as well as academia: Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas (Spain); Delft University of Technology (the Netherlands); Dublin City University (Irleand); EBM-Papst Mulfingen (Germany); Elec-Con technology (Germany); Fraunhofer Gesellschaft (Germany); GE Vingmed Ultrasound AS (Norway); Infineon Technologies (Germany); JLT Mobile Computers Sweden (Sweden); Kontron Embedded Modules (Germany); Microspire (France); On Semiconductor (Belgium); Philips Consumer Lifestyle BV (the Netherlands); Philips Technologie GmbH Forschungslaboratorien (Germany); Stiftelsen Sintef (Norway); STMicroelectronics (Italy); Telefunken Semiconductors (Germany); and Thales Research and Technology (France).
Further information on ENIAC which initiated the SmartPM project is available at www.eniac.eu
Infineon Technologies AG, Neubiberg, Germany, offers semiconductor and system solutions addressing three central challenges to modern society: energy efficiency, communications, and security. In the 2008 fiscal year (ending September), the company reported sales of Euro 4.3 billion with approximately 29,100 employees worldwide. With a global presence, Infineon operates through its subsidiaries in the U.S. from Milpitas, CA, in the Asia-Pacific region from Singapore, and in Japan from Tokyo. Infineon is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: IFX) and in the USA on the over-the-counter market OTCQX International Premier (ticker symbol: IFNNY).