FEL Hosts ISO-NE Board Tour Of Fairchild Semiconductor

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Energy manager FEL Power recently hosted a tour of Fairchild Semiconductor for ISO-New England Board Members. Fairchild Semiconductor's manufacturing activities are energy-intensive, requiring 8-12 MW of electricity per month and an annual electricity bill exceeding $6 million. FEL guided the company through the process of becoming an electricity self-supplier through ISO-New England and has helped them maintain a predictable annual electricity cost since 2005.

FEL Power energy management client Fairchild Semiconductor's South Portland plant

FEL Power recently hosted a tour of energy management client Fairchild Semiconductor for ISO-NE board members.

What we brought Fairchild Semiconductor was the know-how to become their own energy provider.

Four members of ISO-New England’s Board of Directors recently visited Fairchild Semiconductor, a leading supplier of power management and mobile semiconductors worldwide, and an electricity self-supplier since 2005. The event was hosted by August Fromuth, Founder and Managing Director of Freedom Energy Logistics (FEL Power), Fairchild’s energy manager.

Fairchild’s John Gervais, Director of Site Services and Michael Vail, Manager of Site Services/Utilities Manager, made a presentation to the group about the company’s increasing global competition and its energy cost profile. They stated that Fairchild’s Maine manufacturing operations are energy intensive, using 8-12 MW of electricity per hour with an annual electricity bill exceeding $6 million. Finding ways to effectively reduce electricity costs was imperative and any savings achieved enable the company to invest in other energy saving improvements.

Fromuth, past chair of the End Users Group at ISO New England said, “When we first met with Fairchild managers in early 2005, they were doing an admirable job of controlling their energy consumption. They were constantly reassessing their processes, cutting waste, powering down when sections of the line were not needed, providing efficiencies of scale where possible. What we brought to them was the know-how to become their own wholesale energy provider.”

Fairchild plugged directly into the grid December 1, 2005 and has saved hundreds of thousands of dollars over Standard Offer every year since.

“Since we became our own wholesale supplier in 2005, we’ve expanded the plant a number of times. Our output has increased, and electricity fees unassociated with generation and supply have risen at rates much higher than inflation. Through all that, we’ve been able to maintain a steady, predictable annual electricity cost ,” said Fairchild’s Vail.

After the presentation, the group donned clean room garments and toured Fairchild’s wafer fabrication areas. Visitors saw firsthand both the extensive electricity needs of the facility and the intensive efforts of Fairchild to value engineer every aspect of its manufacturing process. Fairchild’s air handlers --designed to control airborne particles as small as 0.3 microns, (a typical hair is 80 microns)—are a huge energy draw, as are the chillers that maintain constant temperature and humidity levels.

ISO-NE Board members present were Roberta S. Brown, president of Sassafras River Associates, LLC of Galena, MD; Paul F. Levy, past President & CEO of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA; Louise McCarren, former CEO of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council; and Vickie Van Zandt of Van Zandt Electric Transmission Consulting, Inc, of Battle Ground, WA. They were joined by Marianne Vetter, Vice President & Chief Administrative Officer at FEL Power.

FEL Power (http://www.felpower.com ) provides customers with high-end energy management services in order to obtain electric power at the lowest possible price. Utilizing wholesale opportunities, market guidance, and long-term procurement planning, it supplies clients from throughout New England with electricity at cost reductions of 10-15%.

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Barbara Wilson
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