08/10/2008 - 22:00

Alternative spin on energy efficiency

08/10/2008 - 22:00

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A WESTERN Australian equipment designer is looking to stake a claim in the lucrative global energy market, taking on the world leaders in energy efficiency technology.

Alternative spin on energy efficiency

A WESTERN Australian equipment designer is looking to stake a claim in the lucrative global energy market, taking on the world leaders in energy efficiency technology.

Joondalup-based energy efficient equipment designer, Robertson Technology, has spent the past six years fine-tuning its designs to measure the efficiency of motor-driven devices, such as large pumps and blowers (compressors).

Robertson Technology managing director Malcolm Robertson believes it's more cost effective to focus on energy efficient projects than the development of renewable energy sources.

"An average 500-kilowatt pump in a water utility chews up a lot of electricity each year, and it may be running at 70 to 80 per cent efficiency, so our device measures the efficiency and can tell you whether it's worthwhile refurbishing that pump," Mr Robertson told WA Business News.

"The significant thing with our invention is that we have long-term stability so that our temperature probes...would be stable for a number of years, so it opens up the possibility of continuous condition monitoring, which wasn't possible before."

Managing the family business from his home, Mr Robertson has developed technology he hopes will help garner a greater share of the global market.

We've got the most accurate differential temperature measurement in the world," he said.

"In our laboratory we can measure differences in temperature of a 1/10,000th of a degree centigrade, and that's stable for several years.

"We're beating NASA by one or two orders of magnitude, so we're pretty happy with that result."

The key markets for his business are located in the Northern Hemisphere, which has been a major challenge.

"The EC and the states between them are two thirds of the world's market for us, about a third each that's for North America and Europe," he said.

"Australia is not the best place in the world to try and develop energy efficient equipment because it's got a relatively small population...and the price in industrial electricity has been very low.

"We're actually trying to attract investment to promote the technology internationally. We're really aiming to get about 50 reps in different countries. It could develop into $5 million profit per year."

Mr Robertson, along with seven other WA companies, will pitch his business at potential investors during the Leading Lights conference in Perth next week.

Other companies include ReadOn, an interactive software system to help people learn to read, The Buzz, a new telephony technology, and i-Delve, a hyper-interactive web-mapping tool.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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