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QUENCHING THIRST WITH ENERGY EFFICIENT CONDITION-BASED MONITORING (CbM) TECHNOLOGY


Water is truly the giver of life, and without it, life itself is simply not possible. Humans, plants, and animals—entire ecosystems and food chains—depend upon clean water to survive. But while nearly 70% of the world is covered by water, only 2.5% of it is fresh and fit for use and consumption. The remainder is saline and ocean-based. Beyond this, just 1% of our freshwater is easily accessible, with much of that trapped in glaciers and snow. And it seems the danger signs are growing as the UN reports by 2025, an estimated 1.8 billion people will live in areas plagued by water scarcity, with two-thirds of the world's population living in water-stressed regions as a result of use, growth, and climate change.

So what’s a planet of 6.8 billion people to do to access drinkable water, as more countries are impacted by conditions out of their hands?

It may seem like a tall task, but Danfoss—with its critical desalination products—is up to the challenge. It’s partnering with Analog Devices, Inc. (ADI)—and its breakthrough, condition-based monitoring technology—to bring fresh water to those in need, in the most energy efficient manner.

97%
PERCENTAGE OF EARTH’S WATER COMPRISED OF OCEAN1
<1%
PERCENTAGE OF THE WORLD’S WATER CONSIDERED DRINKABLE2
200M
KILOWATT HOURS CONSUMED DAILY BY DESALINATION PLANTS3
2
GALLONS OF SEAWATER REQUIRED TO PRODUCE 1 GALLON OF FRESHWATER3
female IT engineer working in server room

AT A GLANCE

COMPANY

Danfoss

INDUSTRY

Industrial Automation

ADI SOLUTION

ADI OtoSense Condition-based Monitoring (CbM) Quality Control.

CHALLENGE

Deliver fresh water through desalination technology/seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) for communities around the world, while limiting energy usage and environmental impact.

GOAL

Incorporate condition-based monitoring technology to enhance productivity, decrease maintenance costs, and lessen energy consumption.

TRANSFORMING THE WORLD THROUGH INNOVATION

Danfoss, a transformative engineering company headquartered in Denmark, is “enabling the world of tomorrow to do more with less”—from infrastructure and food supply, to energy efficiency and climate-friendly solutions. You’ll find Danfoss products and services in refrigeration, air conditioning, heating, motor control, and mobile machinery.

But it’s Danfoss’ recognition as leaders in energy efficient and high-performance products that is now making a dramatic impact in the desalination process—using seawater reverse osmosis (SWRO) to extract fresh water from seawater—which is ultimately impacting the world for the better.

Danfoss has decades of experience developing components for critical applications, including many pioneering developments like axial pump technology. It has leveraged this expertise to become leaders in advanced SWRO and is poised to expand upon its footprint across the world, delivering fresh water to those most in need, especially in developing countries.

THE DESALINATION PROCESS

desalination treatment and process

Step 1:
Pumped Seawater

Saltwater is pumped out of the ocean to begin the desalination process.

Step 2:
Pre-Treatment

Seawater goes through a pre-treatment process to remove materials and particles.

Step 3:
Reverse Osmosis

Reverse osmosis process via specialized pumps, sends concentrated seawater back to the sea and keeps clean water continuing through the process.

Step 4:
Post Treatment

Post-treatment of the water that has continued includes remineralization and stabilizing to correct pH levels.

Step 5:
Fresh Water is Stored
and Sent Out

The fresh water is then stored so there is a reliable supply of desalinized, potable water for communities in need.

SWRO: CREATING AN ABUNDANT SUPPLY OF FRESH WATER

Most would agree that desalination (or seawater reverse osmosis, SWRO) is currently one of the best answers to solving the world’s fresh water shortage. But there are inherent challenges in utilizing this technology, not the least of which is the energy demand (and associated costs) in extracting fresh water from seawater. A substantial amount of energy is necessary because the actual salt forms a strong chemical bond with the water and it’s difficult to break it down and extract the water itself.

Beyond this, energy costs associated with running desalination plants can account for as much as half of the costs of making drinking water from the sea.4

Danfoss addresses this energy consumption challenge with its four core technologies that provide superior energy-efficient, desalination solutions: high pressure pumps; drives; energy-recovery devices; and pressure and fluid control devices. These advanced technologies combine to deliver highly efficient, cost-effective, and long-lasting water purification solutions.

Danfoss high-pressure pumps are at the heart of more than 20,000 seawater reverse osmosis systems around the world. They’re often used at island communities and cruise ships where a consistent stream of fresh water is crucial. These pumps feature a simple design with few moving parts to ensure easy maintenance, long service intervals, and the highest efficiency rates—with up to 92% efficiency, depending on pump sizes.

It’s this approach to sustainable development that is the fundamental element of Danfoss’ approach to business and focus on resource efficiency, risk mitigation, reputation, and engagement. A similar theme is embedded in ADI’s engineering DNA in developing breakthrough technologies.

ADI OtoSense logo

OTOSENSE: LEVERAGING SENSING INTERPRETATION IN QUALITY CONTROL

Analog Devices first engaged with Danfoss on workshop meetings that covered its vision, roadmap, and technologies. This resulted in identifying areas where a collaboration was possible, including a number of industrial technologies and systems that could help accelerate Danfoss to a path of smarter, more sustainable designs.

Chief among these technologies was ADI OtoSense™, specifically its Quality Control functionality. OtoSense is an AI-driven platform that senses and interprets in real-time, any sound, vibration, pressure, current, or temperature for continuous, condition-based monitoring and on-demand diagnostics. It detects anomalies and learns from interaction with domain experts while creating a digital fingerprint to help identify faults in a machine so it can predict breakdowns before they cause costly downtime, damage, or catastrophic failure.

OTOSENSE AI QUALITY CONTROL ON PRODUCTION LINE

white 100 percent icon on blue background

Improve quality control by testing 100% of the assets at the end of line or through the assembly process instead of random sampling.

white dollar sign icon on blue background

Detect a larger number of defective units to reduce retests, customer returns, and warranty costs.

white integrated circuit icon on blue background

Automate the process by making faster, better informed AI-driven decisions to single out abnormal units.

Danfoss decided to utilize ADI OtoSense Quality Control in a pilot program for its pump-testing process to ensure the health and proper functioning of its pumps. These tests require a great deal of energy, so by using ADI OtoSense in the testing, Danfoss will be able to reduce its energy output by 23% and potentially, in the future, by as much as 50%—a demonstrative step in helping lower Danfoss’ carbon footprint.

By ensuring the Danfoss pumps are performing at peak levels, and enduring less maintenance time, ADI ultimately hopes that OtoSense will deliver greater predictability, consistency, enhanced productivity, and product quality, while reducing energy output and environmental impact.

OTOSENSE QUALITY CONTROL—HOW IT WORKS:

pink brain icon

1. Otosense AI

Advanced AI software runs on the computer to analyze data in real time.

blue life line icon

2. Data Is Collected

Sensors are wired to the computer to collect data, enabling enhanced anomaly modeling.

green mangifying glass icon

3. Asset Identification

For more context, OtoSense can retrieve the asset’s serial number or add additional sensing modalities to gain additional insights.

red a plus icon

4. Health Score

The computer will then display a real time health score. If the score is lower than target, it displays the most likely faults based on its learning.

yellow hard hat icon

5. Operator Feedback

Finally the operator can provide feedback, such as a pass/fail and give specific comments.

“OtoSense solves two major concerns: Real-time edge interpretation which continuously translates signals faster than the speed at which data arrives; and AI for sensing interpretation which uses expert human technicians and engineers to help OtoSense learn and progressively become an expert itself.”

Sebastien Christian

ADI AI Engineering Director, OtoSense inventor

ADI AND DANFOSS: PARTNERING FOR GOOD

Analog Devices and Danfoss have a long relationship of more than 20 years, accentuated by their shared vision of helping improve the world though technology. ADI had traditionally been a loyal component supplier to Danfoss but were not a partner for co-creating complete, system-level solutions.

Today, this stronger, collaborative relationship enables Danfoss and ADI to act as innovators for the common good and catalysts of change to help improve communities throughout the world—including desalinating oceans for fresh water while leveraging energy-saving technologies to lessen environmental impact.

boy with hands under water faucet
“Our relationship (with ADI) was built around AI and CbM. The “aha!” moment for us occurred when we realized their technology had the ability to both detect and diagnose very specific events with our pumps - not just vague areas of potential problems leaving us to connect the dots. This has helped us learn very quickly, and now we’re seeing the potential for faster and more energy-efficient, post-production testing because of it.”

Georg Herborg Enevoldsen

R&D Director, Danfoss High-Pressure Pumps


1National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

2National Geographic: Freshwater Crisis

3Seametrics: 15 Interesting Facts About Desalination

4 www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2013-05-01/energy-makes-up-half-of-desalination-plant-costs-study,