AU Optronics Corp. today announced that its process water full-recycling system, the first of its kind developed in Taiwan, launched at the Company's Lungtan site. AUO has made a technological breakthrough in process water recycling.
By going through various recycling phases, process water could be condensed and reduced by 98%, and then zero liquid discharge is realized by using high efficiency evaporation equipment. AUO also pledged that by year 2020, the Company will achieve three major water resource goals, namely "Water Reduction, Water Creation & Water Replenishment". The goals are: TFT-LCD production water intensity will be reduced by 30%, 10,000 tons of reclaimed water will be used daily at AUO's Taichung site, and water replenishment will be achieved at AUO's Lungtan site. Proactive and forward-looking water resource development strategies will be deployed to ensure sustainable development for the environment.
"Under the increasingly extreme weather conditions, risks caused by water shortage present challenge and crises. However, through technological advancements in green and water resource management, AUO continues to create new values and opportunities on the path to sustainability. For instance, we were the first to have engaged in the research of process water full-recycling in 2010. The system successfully operated in the end of this year, proving that it not impossible to strike a balance between environmental and economic development. Next, through the declaration of the three goals of AUO Water 2020 -- Water Resource Development Blueprint, AUO is committed to safeguarding the water resource on a proactive and long-term basis," said Paul SL Peng, AUO's Chairman & Chief Executive Officer.
Premier Chi-Kuo Mao, while attending the event, also acknowledged AUO's long-term dedication to the research and development of water-saving technologies, and subsequently the successful launch of the process water full-recycling system. The Company, capable of balancing both business development and environmental protection, sets an example for the sector.
AUO started the research and development of process water recycling in 2010, and had worked with Industrial Technology Research Institute of Taiwan (ITRI) for a year on partial technologies involved. Then, AUO proposed its self-designed system and construction plan, and initiated the three-year construction of process water full-recycling system in 2013. The system officially launched in the end of this year, setting a successful example for independent system design and integration achieved by local teams. The process water full-recycling system at AUO's Lungtan site uses membrane bioreactor (MBR), reverse osmosis (RO), electrodialysis reversal (EDR), and evaporator (EVP) during the various phases of water recycling and reusing to achieve zero liquid discharge. Meanwhile, by leveraging optimized and integrated design, AUO's process water full-recycling system could significantly reduce energy use and sludge, which is an advanced and environmentally-friendly water resource recycling solution available in the manufacturing sector.
AUO continues to sharpen its edge on the research and development of various water saving and processing technologies to increase water efficiency and reduce use of tap water; in 2015, the total process water recycled at all sites in Taiwan amounted to 112 million tons, equivalent to the annual water consumption of 373,300 households. The next step is to attain the three goals of "Water Reduction, Water Creation & Water Replenishment" by 2020. "Water Reduction" refers to a 30% drop in the production water intensity, which will be achieved by improved processing technologies and water treatment equipment to effectively reduce water use during production. "Water Creation" refers to 10,000 tons of reclaimed water used daily by AUO's Taichung site, which echoes the national water resource policy and significantly increases autonomy in water supply. "Water Replenishment" will be achieved based on Lungtan's zero liquid discharge solution. Through self reduction in water use and technological support to the supply chain, AUO aims to become Taiwan's first company to achieve water replenishment by collective water-saving efforts along the supply chain..
AUO also declared today the opening of AUO GreenArk at Lungtan site, which adopts AUO's solar modules and storage system to meet low carbon green concept. It is hoped that through the showcase and guided tour, the public could better understand AUO's innovative water recycling technologies and water related knowledge, planting the seed of green consciousness and promoting the concept of sustainability.