LED conversion cuts Rockline's operating, maintenance costs


A global, world-class manufacturer of premium paper products, Rockline Industries has grown to become a major supplier of private-label wet wipes to its Arkansas neighbor, Walmart. As part of its comprehensive sustainability initiative, Rockline has charted an aggressive course to reduce its environmental footprint through more environmentally efficient operations, transparency and integrity.

As part of its program, the company recently replaced its inefficient metal halide fixtures with Dialight’s high-efficiency DuroSite LED High Bay luminaires inside its production facility. Not only has the conversion reduced energy consumption and operating costs, but it also has positioned the company to benefit handsomely from energy-saving rebate incentives – to the tune of nearly $50,000.

Gentle on baby’s skin, consumer’s wallets and the environment
For more than 30 years, Rockline has built a reputation as a trusted supplier of household paper and non-woven products, including; coffee filters, paper baking cups, baby wipes, personal care and home care wipes, and its newest line of biodegradable, flushable moist toilet tissue. As the largest supplier of wet wipes in North America, the company is a recognized leader in product innovation – as well as sustainable manufacturing practices. Its line of environmentally friendly wipes is 100 percent biodegradable and made with 100 percent renewable resources.

Rockline’s corporate sustainability program, “Changing Our Environmental Footprint”, is aimed at not only increasing use of sustainable supplies and optimizing the environmental friendliness of its products. The company also is determined to improve its facilities and operational practices to reduce its carbon footprint and environmental impact. With aggressive goals, including a 2 percent reduction in both energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions per standard unit of production for 2010, Rockline is committed to “walking the walk” and encouraging its customers, associates, suppliers and communities to join in.

Cutting energy costs, consumption in Booneville
With 15 metal halide fixtures burning 12 hours a day, five days a week in the mixing room, and another 125 ablaze 24/7 in the manufacturing area at its Booneville, Ark., baby wipes production facility, Rockline’s energy consumption was excessive. To improve energy efficiency and reduce total operating costs, the company recently replaced all 140 of the 400-watt metal halide fixtures in both areas with Dialight’s high-efficiency DuroSite LED High Bay fixtures. The new fixtures have not only slashed future energy consumption per fixture from approximately 400 watts to just 150 per unit, but they also have improved light performance and output, reduced maintenance cost and qualified Rockline for a substantial rebate for its energy-efficient practices.

“The installation went very smoothly with minimal interruption to our manufacturing process,” said Nick Santoleri, vice president of manufacturing at Rockline. “The beauty of it is that the new fixtures use all standard plugs, so there was no need for rewiring during the retrofit.”

Better performance, less maintenance
In addition to the significant energy savings, the new LED fixtures also have helped to reduce lighting maintenance. When you factor in the cost of renting a lift to reach the 18-foot mounting height, maintaining the old fixtures was a large expense every year.

With unique, highly efficient 11,600 lumens (79 lumens per watt), the Dialight DuroSite Series LED High Bay fixtures combine the latest Cree XLamp XP-G LED, precision optics and next-generation thermal management practices. The long-life performance of the Dialight LED fixtures means that Rockline can now expect to get as much as 10 years of life out of each fixture – with the first five covered by Dialight’s no-cost replacement warranty.

The company and its employees are both pleased with the significant temperature drop inside the manufacturing facility as a result of the new LED fixtures. Without the excess heat generated from the metal halide fixtures, Rockline’s HVAC engineers have noted a 20-ton (10 to 15 percent) reduction in air conditioning demand to maintain comfortable temperatures inside the facility – an additional energy-saving and sustainability benefit for the company.

“Employees have noticed that it is cooler, and they like the light produced by the LEDs better than the old lights,” Santoleri said. “It’s not only more uniform, but the crisp white light is easier on the eyes.”

In an area prone to severe weather and the associated power outages, the instant-on feature of the DuroSite fixtures also is a significant benefit to both worker comfort and safety. And, the fixtures tend to generate less static, eliminating the light distortion that can occur with even minimal dust accumulation on traditional metal halide units.

Annual rebates add to LED benefits
As a result of its energy-saving initiatives, which included the Dialight DuroSite retrofit, Rockline is qualified and has already applied for a $48,000 energy-savings rebate through American Electric Power’s Southwestern Electric Power Company.

“The energy and cost savings combined with the opportunity to receive the energy-efficiency rebates has made the conversion to LED lighting a substantial part of our sustainability efforts,” Santoleri said. “We’re already looking to convert other areas where safety and color rendering are just as important as energy efficiency, including our building exterior and truck loading area.”

For more information on Dialight products and services, visit www.dialight.com.

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