ZF opens first zero-emission factory in Klasterec, Czech Republic – ET Auto

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One of the primary challenges is to convert the existing ZF plants around the world so that they can be operated with climate-neutral energy from now on.

At the production site for power electronics in Klasterec in the Czech Republic, ZF is opening its first zero- emission factory after a renovation period of just under a year and a half. The plant, which is part of the Electrified Powertrain Technology division, supports the company’s efforts to achieve climate neutrality across all value chains by 2040. It will be used as the blueprint for all ZF plants worldwide.

The technology company is gradually shifting to sustainably generated energy at all locations, increasing the energy efficiency of processes, electrifying a significant proportion of its products and using recycled materials.

One of the primary challenges is to convert the existing ZF plants around the world so that they can be operated with climate-neutral energy from now on. “The sustainable transformation at the Klasterec location is ground-breaking for our entire production network and helps us to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” Stephan von Schuckmann, member of the ZF Board of Management, said.

To build strong, sustainable foundations it’s important to equip plants with the ability to generate electricity. In Klasterec, this was accomplished by installing 3,400 solar modules on the campus, meeting roughly 20% of the plant’s annual electricity requirements.

Any electricity that isn’t generated internally is purchased from renewable sources – mainly wind and hydroelectric power. “Klasterec is our benchmark,” emphasizes Dhanashree Kad, Head of Sustainability at ZF’s Electrified Powertrain Technology Division.

As early as 2025, five years earlier than initially planned, all ZF locations will be fully powered by green electricity, which will be generated in-house or obtained through contracts with renewable energy providers. Additionally, the Czech e-mobility plant’s fossil fuel-dependent gas heating system has been replaced by heat pumps, reducing the plant’s overall annual heating costs by 50%. During colder months, the plant uses the natural cold of the outside air (free cooling) to cool down the technology within the facility.

ZF has operated a plant in Klasterec , about 100km northwest of Prague, since 1992. Today, the newly remodelled plant has nearly 700 employees and produces power electronic components for electric motors produced by ZF plants in Germany and Serbia. Customers include international car manufacturers, the company said in a media release.

  • Published On Mar 1, 2024 at 11:00 AM IST

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