Sony is focused on reducing our environmental footprint starting where our products are born. For example, CMOS image sensor production requires extreme clean room air conditioning. We have taken steps to ensure that the rooms are energy efficient while maintaining workspace quality levels required to produce one of our highly technical products.
Powering precision-manufacturing clean rooms with energy efficiency
CMOS image sensors are the electronic eyes of smartphones and digital cameras. Every Xperia™ and countless other devices from cameras to cars have one. Today's latest semiconductors, such as CMOS image sensors, cannot be made without a clean room, and it takes a lot of energy to maintain the required temperatures, humidity and cleanliness.
Empowering factory employees to innovate environmental workplace solutions
To maintain the high-level clean room conditions necessary for the fine processing of semiconductors, it is essential to leverage the experience and knowledge of internal stakeholders. They are key to improvement efforts that can reduce impacts on the environment while maintaining the clean room standards required for product quality and high production yields.
Recycling excess heat to reduce total energy consumption
We focused on the air-conditioning system at the Nagasaki Technology Center to cut energy use. In semiconductor manufacturing, it is important to keep the clean room within a certain range of temperature and humidity. To do that, the temperature of the air taken in from outside is adjusted by either cooling or heating.
Energy for the steam heating of this plant previously came from burning fossil fuels. By replacing this with heat given off by the equipment operating in the plant, we have increased our energy efficiency by approximately 2.1 times.
The new system realised two key environmental benefits: Increasing overall energy efficiency by repurposing waste heat; and helping to reduce our CO2 emissions by lowering fossil fuel consumption. The new system has reduced CO2 emissions by about 52% from the previous configuration's approximately 9,300 tons to approximately 4,400 tons.
Sony Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation
Sony Device Technology (Thailand) Co., Ltd. (SDT) handles semiconductor assembly and shipping. By remapping air flows using "partial air conditioning" and raising refrigerated water temperatures, they have been able to run clean rooms with far less energy.
Optimising airflows for improved efficiency
The new system has reduced CO2 emissions by about 67% compared with the previous system, from approximately 4,000 tons to approximately 1,300 tons. Newly introduced HVAC units control airflow more efficiently by directing air at production machines. The new airflow strategies also shift unwanted dust to the ceiling and away from production areas.
Sony Technology (Thailand) Co., Ltd
CWS-Asia Pacific OFFICE
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