Color Printing Company

IEA Helps Printing Business Keep the Presses Running
A major Iowa printing company depends on continuity in its electrical power to keep its business running smoothly. The company prints retail inserts, direct mail, catalogs, comics and an assortment of other pieces for customers across the United States.

In 1986, the company made the decision to add on an on-site backup generator to handle its facility’s load during power outages and to be prepared in the event of a weather-related interruption.

Initially, Industrial Energy Applications (IEA) installed a 1,500 kW diesel generator, which IEA owns, operates and maintains based on a shared-savings agreement. The interruptible program helps the business pay for their generation.

Over the years, the company added two additional generators for a total standby generation capacity of 3 MW. IEA provides the company with 24/7 monitoring service through its state-of-the-art Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system. “Having on-site backup generation gives us peace of mind.”

To safeguard its operations, the printing company used “storm runs.” When severe weather approaches (e.g., lightning, high winds, freezing rain, heavy snowfall, etc.), they proactively start the generators and transfer its load from the utility, isolating the facility from any induced faults or storm damage that may cause a utility outage. Once the storm has passed, the facility is transferred back to the utility and the generators are shut down.

“Having on-site backup generation gives us peace of mind knowing our presses will remain running and our customers will receive their order on time,” said the electrical coordinator for the printing company. “There’s no concern about lost revenue or lost productivity when bad weather is forecast.” Additionally, IEA ran the generation system during periods of utility interruption.