Exone end to end binder jetting service

Going Green Pays: Conwed Releases Impressive New Global Sustainability Report

INTAMSYS industrial 3d printing

Share this Article

conwedMinnesota-based plastic netting manufacturer and 3D printing pioneer Conwed just published their Global Sustainability Report 2016 and they have shown some impressive results in the reduction of waste. The company has several locations, each with wildly different waste and sustainability standards, including manufacturing sites throughout the US and in Belgium. So the company decided to implement best practices at all of its locations with the goal of both increasing efficiency in day to day operations and in developing netting manufacturing solutions that would require less material and produce less waste.

Advanced water filtration system with 3D printed feed spacers.

Advanced water filtration system with 3D printed feed spacers.

As one of the world’s largest manufacturers of plastic netting materials, the company’s products are used in hundreds of applications. They serve industries as diverse as agriculture, automotive, transportation, medical, consumer packaging, energy production, construction and of course water filtration. Conwed is producing some groundbreaking work in the development of 3D printed feed spacers that enable uniform water flow through their membrane structures in complex spiral-wound reverse osmosis and nanofiltration membrane systems. Their research is leading to new, highly advanced water purifying and filtration systems that could radically improve water quality throughout the world.

Conwed made the decision to review all of its manufacturing operations way back in 2009 and gave themselves a set of sustainability goals that would modernize their production processes. They focused on four major areas. The first was a goal to reduce their carbon footprint company-wide and the second was to control water consumption. They also focused on reducing the amount of cubic yards of waste that were generated as well as the total process resin waste that was being generated.

“We believed we needed to focus on areas we could directly impact at each of our manufacturing locations. Improving our production efficiency while continuously reducing our expenses and waste was a natural way to impact our sustainability record,” explained Conwed Senior Strategic Marketing Manager Ivan Soltero.

Conwed plastic netting solutions.

Conwed plastic netting solutions.

Since Conwed implemented their sustainability goals the company has cut greenhouse gas emissions by 13%, dropped water consumption by 24%, reduced cubic yards of waste by a massive 79% and eliminated a total of 19% of their process resin material waste. The company managed these remarkable reductions using a series of ongoing water usage audits, preventive maintenance measured and regularly seeking potential process improvement opportunities. They worked closely with the manufacturing and operations teams responsible for managing each location and have a shared goal of reducing water consumption at all of their plant locations until they have optimizes water usage.

3dp_conwed_sustainability“Embracing a sustainability program has had a direct impact on our business because we are focused on finding ways to do things better, more efficiently, with the least amount of waste. That surely impacts our financial performance, but it also reassures our customers that we are driven to manufacture the best plastic netting with the least amount of material and waste. Although we are proud of the progress we made, we understand that sustainability is an ongoing commitment with significant value to Conwed and our stakeholders. Sustainability efforts are now part of our everyday business,” continued Soltero.

The largest reduction of water consumption made by the sustainability program was due to improving manufacturing processes that would control material waste and encourage the reuse of as much resin internally as possible. Not only was waste reduced, but the new processes also produced a considerable cost savings. The company also invested in new equipment that made it easy to identify and collect materials that can be sent to recycling facilities, collaborated with many of their suppliers and customers to produce the best waste reduction practices. Discuss the release of their latest reports in the Conwed Sustainability Report forum over at 3DPB.com.

 

Share this Article


Recent News

BASF Opens New 3D Printing Center in Detroit

3D Printed Touch Sensors Yield Feeling Future for Cybernetics



Categories

3D Design

3D Printed Art

3D Printed Food

3D Printed Guns


You May Also Like

3D Printing News Briefs, August 25, 2021: Software Beta, Self-Replicating Printer, & More

We’re starting with materials in today’s 3D Printing News Briefs, as XJet as announced the commercial availability of alumina ceramic. Moving on, Raise3D has announced the ideaMaker 4.2.0 beta, and...

Featured

Facility for Mass Roll-to-Roll 3D Printing to Be Opened by MIT Spinout

Massachusetts manufacturing startup OPT Industries uses automation engineering, computational design, and materials science to develop and manufacture customizable functional materials for 3D printing. The MIT spinout company became well-known for its...

3D Printed Sensor Created by Fraunhofer and ARBURG

One of the many Holy Grails of 3D printing is the ability to 3D print fully functional items in a single build process. Companies like Inkbit and Sakuu are after...

Inkbit Raises $30M in Series B Funding, Plans to Expand Production of 3D Printing System

MIT spinout Inkbit has raised $30 million in a Series B funding round led by venture capital firm Phoenix Venture Partners (PVP). The company intends to use the funds to...


Shop

View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.