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IHS Report Summary

Project ID: 743024

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - IHS (water and energy efficient Induction Humidification System for textile applications)

Reporting period: 2016-11-01 to 2017-02-28

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

The AERIS Group, is located near Bergamo, Italy and specializes in the design, development, manufacturing and commissioning of air technological applications, ranging from air conditioning through to removal and heat recovery. With more than 50 years of experience and a turnover of over €6 million in 2016, our group is composed of 3 companies: AERIS air technologies, expert in HVAC and filtering, EDENYA for air cooling solutions and MAZZINIICI, our textile division. The technical know-how of our high-specialized professionals, our detailed knowledge of materials, production processes and production methods in the different industrial fields as well as a business strategy turned towards continuous innovation and global presence are the basis of our success and growth.

We listen carefully to customers feedback from the textile sector – which represents 35% of our turnover – and their concerns about product quality, water and energy consumption. This led us to the development of the patented Supra high pressure water technology 20 years ago.

We are now developing the next step, the Induction Humidification System (IHS): by integrating a customized air distribution and diffusion system with specific diffusers, we can “move” a volume of air 10 times equal to the primary air, and fully mixed with micronized water for even humidity level without water waste. The IHS reduces drastically water consumption by 50% and energy by up to 60%, while guaranteeing an optimum control of humidity (+/-0.5%) and temperature (+/- 0.5 degrees).

The IHS system will achieve long-term profitability for both our customers and our company, with an increase of sales reaching €5.7million by 2023, for a total of €15.0 million of accumulated revenues over the 2019-2023 period.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

The work has been undertaken under four strands.

In the technical section (Task 1) we have continued to develop and test the equipment at Fibre Nobili (part of the Luis Vuitton group) to measure the benefits and identify operational improvements prior to launch of the commercial product. The tests have been extremely successful demonstrating control of temperature to ±0.5oC and humidity to ±0.5%RH at a reduction in water use of 50% and energy use of 60% over a comparable adiabatic A/C system. We have undertaken a Freedom to Operate IP search which has confirmed that we are not infringing any prior art. We have identified our supply chain and costs for further development prototypes as well as the stages required to take the product through to market.

In the commercial section (Task 2) we have deepened our knowledge of the market and made some preliminary contact with clients for trials of the product. We have investigated other market options, particularly the paper and pulp market in Europe as well as analysing our competitors.

In the financial section (Task 3) we have reassessed the financial feasibility to ensure that the product will be profitable in a timely manner and to understand the financial requirements for full development.

These tasks have then been brought together into a business plan (task 4) containing elements of tasks 1-3.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

The apparel industry accounts for 10% of global carbon emissions and is the second largest industrial polluter after the oil industry. Global carbon emissions from fossil fuels were 9.795 GtC (35.94 GtCO2) in 2014 meaning that the textile industry is responsible for (approximately) 3.594 billion tonnes of CO2 emissions per annum. It is also the second biggest polluter of freshwater resources.

Our product will enable textile mills to significantly reduce the amount of water and energy they require to maintain the environment within the production areas in order to ensure that the product is of the desired quality. As well as reducing energy and water usage, this should also decrease the amount of water material generated due to poor control of the internal environment.

The ability to accurately control the temperature within the production areas will also improve the working environment for the staff at textile mills worldwide.

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