16.11.2022 | Sustainability | Reading-time: 2 min

Emmi installs solar thermal system

Lucerne/Langnau - The milk processor Emmi has become the first private Swiss company to put an industrial solar thermal system into operation. It generates high-temperature process water at the production site in Langnau in the canton of Bern.

Around 109 solar thermal energy collectors are converting sunlight into heat at Emmi’s production site in Langnau. According to a press release, this solar thermal system is the first operated by a private company to be used industrially in Switzerland. It should save 55 metric tons of CO2 per year. With this, the milk processor considers itself to be on track for its netZERO 2050 emission reduction course.

Around 210 square meters of roof surface in Langnau are being used to convert sunlight to meet some of the site’s requirement for high-temperature process water. The system was created by the Geneva-based supplier TVP Solar. To date, the company has proven this technology’s efficacy within the heating network of the infrastructure company Service Industriels de Genève and in other countries.

TVP Solar CEO Piero Abbate comments: “This pioneering project is a prime example of the potential of solar thermal energy for industrial uses in Switzerland as well.” It has been supported by the Swiss Federal Office of Energy using funds from the Swiss Climate Foundation. Abbate adds: “Further support is needed from the federal government to implement decarbonization in Swiss companies more rapidly and extensively.” Planair, an engineering office specializing in renewable energy from La Sagne in the canton of Neuchâtel, integrated the system into the existing processes.

According to Emmi, more than a third of Switzerland’s CO2 emissions come from heating. The company’s information states that it is currently investigating the implementation of solar thermal energy at other production sites.