A leading global designer and manufacturer of engineered solutions, SKF held a technical session on traditional power and the renewable energy segments at Taj Land's End in Mumbai. R Srinivasan reports.A leading global designer and manufacturer of engineered solutions in bearings, seals, mechatronics, lubrication systems and services, SKF held a Technical Press Day and a dedicated technical session on their traditional and renewable energy segments at Taj Land's End in Mumbai. The conference covered updates on their global and Indian operations including the market scenario and opportunities, their offerings and applications and new and innovative solutions to help improve productivity.Delivering his welcoming speech, Tom Johnstone, President and CEO, SKF Group, spoke about the company in its entirety and about the company in the four dimensions of business, employee, environmental and community care. He said that the company's sales in 2010 was MSEK 61,029 (~ Euro 6.7 billion) and has around 44,742 employees with a presence in over 130 countries. He added, "One of our driving forces is to deliver significant energy and carbon savings to our customers with our solutions." Following a technical glitch during his presentation, he quipped, "Now let's see how Rakesh [Makhija, President, SKF Asia] presents his slide."Speaking about the company's sales Rakesh Makhija, President, SKF Asia, said, "The company's sales (2010) was SEK 16.4 billion (around 1.8 billion euros) and we have about 10,000 employees in the region." He added, "Growth in Asia is high so we will be adding about 10,000 employees."The company had also inaugurated its Global Technical Centre in Bangalore, India (GTCI) and speaking about it, Shishir Joshipura, Managing Director and Country Head, SKF India, said, "With the launch of the GTCI our customers will benefit from closer to home availability of our global knowledge and expertise in addressing the growing need in India for newer technology development at a faster pace. Additionally, over the last two years, the company has opened two factories in Ahmedabad, Mysore and Haridwar to meet the expanding product base in the region." He said that the company's sales (2010) was around Rs 23 billion and that the group in India has about 2,800 employees.In the technical presentation and discussion on the 'traditional power' segment Greg Toomey, Group Segment Expert (traditional energy), USA, and Kundan Dave, Key Account Manager, Power segment, service division, gave presentations. Greg speaking about their company's solutions for a traditional power plant said, "In a coal pulveriser, better seal design will prevent failure of the roller bearing due to coal dust ingress. This results in cost savings due to lesser maintenance."On the topic of 'renewable power', there were presentations by Stefan Karlsson, Group Segment Expert, Industrial division, Sweden, Abhijit Kulkarni, Manager, Energy segment, Renewable Power and Krishna Kumar, DGM, Marketing, Lincoln India.Speaking about changes in the industry over the last five years (2005- 2010), Stefan said that in 2005 the total installation was about 60,000 MW whereas in 2010 the total installation was about 200,000 MW. About the major trends he said that they are: major growth by Asian turbine manufacturers, newer areas of operation (deserts, arctic areas) and offshore, expanding turbines sizes and direct drive versus gearbox-equipped turbines.Speaking about India in the wind energy segment, Abhijit said, "India is placed fifth in the global wind industry and has a total installed capacity (2010) of 12,966 MW with a growth of approximately 20 per cent year-on-year growth for the last three years. From 1995 - 2004 the industry was growing at a very slow rate but after 2005 the growth has been exponential and in 2011 we are expected to reach around 3,000 MW. So there is great potential."The decision of the conference agenda to go from global to Asia to India and to then focus on the technical seminar (which was split up into traditional and renewable energy sessions) was a great progression of sorts.
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