Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation

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Energy efficiency and effective war fighting go hand-in-hand at Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation.

Best known for its world-famous BLACK HAWK helicopter, Sikorsky Aircraft supplies airplanes and helicopters to all five branches of the U.S. Armed Services, and sells to commercial and government clients in 40 other countries, as well. 

It is an energy-intensive business. But through a comprehensive company-wide approach to efficiency, Sikorsky has found ways to save over 71,000 megawatt hours of electricity a year. And what’s good for the environment is good for the bottom line: Sikorsky is saving nearly $8 million annually in energy costs.

“We take a disciplined and comprehensive approach to environmental responsibility, and that includes greenhouse gas reduction and energy conservation goals that loop in everyone from top executives to outside suppliers,” said David Eherts, Vice President, EH&S and Chief Safety Officer.  “Our energy efficiency efforts are saving us money, helping us improve our manufacturing processes, and saving on maintenance costs—and that makes us more competitive in today’s global market.”

Sikorsky’s two-million-square-foot production facility in Stratford, Connecticut, houses approximately 6,650 full time employees working in engineering, manufacturing, assembly and test flight operations.   

Last year, Sikorsky put in a new 10 megawatt combined heat and power cogeneration plant, which produces enough power to supply 84 percent of the facility’s electricity needs and 85 percent of its steam heating needs. The power plant uses waste heat to operate absorption chillers, provide space heating in winter, and power a steam-turbine air-compressor system. The cogeneration plant cuts greenhouse gas emissions by more than 8,900 tons annually. That is the equivalent of taking 1,600 cars off the road.

The combined heat and power cogeneration plant is just the latest in a long string of energy-efficient and clean-energy efforts from Sikorsky Aircraft. Some examples:

  • In 2010, Sikorsky installed 250 rooftop solar panels that generate 106,250 kilowatt hours of clean, renewable energy each year. So far, the panels have generated enough electricity to power 164 homes, while eliminating more than 200,000 pounds of greenhouse gas emissions.
  • With help from the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund, Sikorsky built a new facility for testing helicopter transmissions that cuts emissions and reliance on grid power.
  • Sikorsky replaced old, inefficient parking lot lighting with super-efficient LEDs. 

Sikorsky is not resting on its laurels. This year’s renovations to the company’s Engineering Building will be LEED silver certified. And the company has started work on ISO 50001 Energy Management Certification, after the Department of Energy selected Sikorsky to participate in a pilot program.

Sikorsky Aircraft: committed to energy efficiency, energy alternatives, and sustainability—while building some of the world’s best aircraft. 

Savings Snapshot
Annual Energy Savings (kwh/yr): 77,174,587
Total Savings ($): $ 7,660,943
Total Project Cost: $ 26,938,605
Incentive Dollars: $ 4,831,533
Customer Cost: $ 22,267,680
Simple Payback: 2.9

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