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The target for the size of our contribution in reducing CO2 emissions through energy-saving products was 34.85 million tons in fiscal 2013. However, the actual result was 33.68 million tons, mainly due to the drop in sales of consumer goods. In a breakdown of CO2 emissions reductions by global product category, approx. 83% came from air conditioners, TVs and illumination lamps. By region, Japan, Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa, and China & Northeast Asia made up roughly 72%. In addition, CO2 emissions from the use of our major products in fiscal 2013 was estimated to be approx. 77 million tons.*1
In Japan, we continue to work toward increasing the percentage of No.1 energy-saving products while reducing the percentage of low energy-saving products, in accordance with the Energy Conservation Performance Catalog.*6 Regarding the target of achieving more than 30% ratio in No. 1, more than 70% in the top ranking ratios (including No. 1), and reducing lower-ranking product types as far as possible, we have been able to push up the No. 1 ratio from 16% to 38%, the top ranking ratio from 62% to 73%, and the number of low-ranking product types reduced to one model (0.4%) for which production has been terminated, achieving in effect, zero.
The 2012 model of DIGA for the Japanese market, DRM-BR130, has reduced power consumption-not only when operating but also in standby mode-achieving 14.9 kWh*7 in annual power consumption, which is the lowest in industry.*8 In addition, it was selected as the Product of the Year in the Eco Mark Awards 2012, as a product that excels not only in energy-saving performance but also in resource conservation and recyclability.
Blu-ray Disc Recorder DIGA DRM-BR130
Eco Mark Award 2012 logo
The 2012 model, CS-TC18NKY, for the Indian market is equipped with a compressor capable of stable operation even under temperatures as high as 55°C and achieves an outstanding energy efficiency ratio of 11.64 Btu*9/hW. Further, it has the ECONAVI function for automatically controlling and adjusting operation power by detecting the level or absence of human activity, cutting down energy consumption by as much as 20%. The product received India's National Energy Conservation Award 2012, given for outstanding energy-saving performance.
Air conditioner CS-TC18NKY
National Energy Conservation Award 2012 trophy
The 2012 model for Brazil, NR-BB51PV1, has achieved energy consumption of 44 kWh/month*10 through its inverter and other energy-saving technologies, and has been certified as Rank A, the top-level ranking in Brazil's energy conservation standards. Also, its ECONAVI function to automatically conserve energy by detecting the refrigerator door opening and closing or the room light being turned off to suspend power consumption during designated hours, has contributed to further reducing power consumption by as much as 10%.
Nickel metal hydride rechargeable batteries lose their power output during long periods of storage due to self-discharge, the natural depletion of battery capacity.
Using our own unique technology, energy loss of the eneloop by self-discharge has been curbed, achieving the industry's top-class residual energy ratio of approx. 90% after one year and approx. 70% after five years. Also, the charger is equipped with a standby energy zero*11 mode, controlling energy loss also when recharging.
Nickel metal hydride rechargeable battery for household use eneloop
UV printing in which UV light is used to dry the ink instantaneously offers many benefits. In addition to eliminating the need to wait for the ink to dry, it has the capability of printing on a wide range of materials and can be used in various applications.
Our LED line-type UV curing system, UD90, is equipped with its own unique cooling mechanism to prevent overheating, thus making the use of high-output UV LEDs possible. Compared to conventional UV lamp mechanisms, energy consumption while in operation has been cut to roughly 1/8. Also, LEDs enable instantaneous on and off, enabling power to be shut down during standby, compared to the conventional mechanism that requires power during standby mode, thereby reducing energy consumption on standby to approx. 1/18. Furthermore, the UV LED has a life roughly 15 times that of conventional UV lamps, lasting around 15,000 hours. It is also distinguished for not using mercury.
These environmental functionalities have been recognized with the UD 90 receiving the Japan Machinery Federation Chairman's Award at the fiscal 2013 Commendations for Outstanding Energy-Saving Appliances.
LED line-type UV curing system UD90
Mark of Commendations for Outstanding Energy-Saving Appliances
The MIP006 PWM control IC for switching power supply, launched in 2012, has been used as a power supply for TVs and PCs. Appliances remaining connected to an electrical outlet are able to reduce energy consumption when the power is off by 94% compared to the previous MIP2D2 model. Standby power consumption in AC 100 V connection can be reduced to under 0.003 W, contributing to our goal of standby energy zero*12 power consumption for appliances.
PWM control IC for switching power supply MIP006
We actively develop our energy creation business to maximize the size of contribution in reducing CO2 emissions. By delivering photovoltaic power generation systems and household fuel cell cogeneration systems as means to create necessary electricity with few CO2 emissions, we reduce CO2 emissions in society.
The size of contribution in reducing CO2 emissions through energy-creating products for fiscal 2013 was 3.27 million tons, severely impacted by market slowdown due to the reduction of renewable energy-related subsidies in Europe. Although the goal of 3.6 million tons was not reached, the effort resulted in a 15% growth over the previous year.
Photovoltaic power is generated by transforming solar light energy into electricity by semiconductors. The amount of power generation depends on season, weather, and time, but unlike thermal power generation in which fossil fuels are burned to generate electricity, no CO2, exhaust gas or ash is emitted during photovoltaic power generation.
The Panasonic Group's HIT*13 solar panels provide high-power generation efficiency and output per unit area, and are lightweight and compact, allowing sufficient power generation even with narrow roofs. The HIT 233/240 Series, the home photovoltaic power generation system that achieves top-class power output,*14 has been joined by the HIT Half-Type 116/120, which has half the size and was launched in January 2013. With the introduction of this product, combined use with the standard size has enabled effective use of space and installation of more photovoltaic modules.
Also, HIT photovoltaic cells achieved the world's top conversion efficiency*15 of 24.7%*16 in research tests. The conversion efficiency rate achieved 0.5 percentage points higher than the top rate of the single-crystal silicone solar cell reported for commercial sizes (of over 100 cm2), demonstrating that HIT solar cells possess outstanding efficiency.
Residential photovoltaic power generation system (joined by the half-type)
Fuel cell cogeneration systems provide high-power energy efficiency and conservation by generating electricity through an electrochemical reaction between oxygen in the atmosphere and hydrogen extracted from city gas, and can heat water with the heat generated from the reaction at the same time.
In May 2009, we launched our household fuel cell cogeneration system named ENE-FARM in partnership with domestic gas companies to lead the world in bringing fuel cell cogeneration technology into the home for residential use. By December 2012, we shipped a total of approx. 21 thousand units.
In addition, new products were developed in the ENE-FARM series in cooperation with Tokyo Gas Co., Ltd., to further reduce the price and installation space, as well as achieve a general efficiency of 95.0% (LHV*17), which is the highest in the world.*18 The products were launched in April 2013.
New product of ENE-FARM
Energy-storing products store and use power when needed. These energy-storing products play an important role in ensuring the stable supply of power through the use of renewable energy, such as solar and wind power. Further attention has gathered since the Great East Japan Earthquake as to the importance of these products in alleviating electricity shortfalls during power outages and at times of disaster.
The Panasonic XLJ-ME15A lithium ion storage battery system 15 kWh (compatible to general environment) can store power directly from photovoltaic power cells without DC to AC power conversion, thus eliminating power storage losses and ensuring efficient power consumption. In case of power failure, the system automatically switches to independent operation and supplies power to designated devices. Additionally, the power supply from the storage batteries can be controlled with a timer to supply power automatically during peak power hours and control system power consumption as a result. It is also compatible to multiple output of single-phase 100 V/single phase & triple phase 200 V, so that it can be used in a variety of electrical devices including lighting fixtures, electric fans, cell phones, notebook PCs, wireless communication devices for use in disaster situations, security devices, and pumps. The product has been designated as eligible for the FY2012 Subsidy Program Promoting Installation of Stationary Lithium-ion Storage Batteries.
Lithium-ion storage battery system for public and industrial use XLJ-ME15A
In line with the rise in environmental awareness and to improve fuel efficiency of vehicles, the use of Idle Stop vehicles is spreading alongside eco-cars including hybrid vehicles (HEVs). Idle Stop vehicles had the problem of huge battery load due to the need to supply total power from the (lead) battery for the air conditioning fan and other devices during Idle Stop (engine not running) in addition to engine startup.
For this reason, Energy Company developed the 12 V Energy Recycling System utilizing automotive nickel metal hydride batteries for Idle Stop vehicles. The system stores the energy generated at deceleration and reuses the energy to improve its capability of supplying energy to the electrical components of the vehicle. In addition, further improvements in fuel efficiency can be made possible by supplying power to the assist motor of the drive system. Based on technology cultivated in the development of HEV batteries, power cells with enhanced power storage efficiency and durability under high temperatures have been developed. This design enables greater flexibility in terms of installation, such as installation in the engine compartment.
Furthermore, the 12 V Energy Recycling System can be connected in parallel to the lead battery. This leads to reduction of the load on the lead battery because the electric current mainly flows to the nickel metal hydride battery due to its low electrical resistance. Panasonic tests showed that the life of the main battery (lead battery) is extended by about 6 times*19 when used together with the 12 V Energy Recycling System, compared to that of the lead battery system when used alone.
Automotive nickel metal hydride battery cell used in the 12 V Energy Recycling System.