Q&A with Zoran Falkenstein, Acting Group President of Advanced Technologies at Applied Medical
Applied Medical is a global company that designs, develops and manufactures medical devices for customers in more than 75 countries. The company recently worked with REC Solar to install nearly 3 megawatts of solar at their corporate headquarters in Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif. and at a nearby distribution center. To learn more about why they made this investment, we interviewed Zoran Falkenstein, Acting Group President of Advanced Technologies at Applied Medical.
1. Tell us about Applied Medical.
At Applied Medical, we are dedicated to providing innovative medical devices that improve patient outcomes and enable the advancement of minimally invasive surgery. As a new generation medical device company, we are equally committed to improving the affordability and accessibility of high quality healthcare.
2. Can you tell us about the broader renewable investments being made at Applied Medical?
As a company committed to making a meaningful, positive difference in everything we do, from enhancing patient outcomes to caring for the environment, we wholeheartedly believe in the benefits of using renewable energy. At Applied we utilize a cogeneration system in one of our main manufacturing facilities. This system generates both electricity and thermal energy, reduces energy demand and serves as a back-up energy source. We have a fuel cell system which converts natural gas into electricity, providing reliable power to our main campus. Plus, we worked with REC Solar to install solar panels on eight of our buildings, adding to our growing portfolio of clean, reliable energy.
3. What are the primary drivers of your sustainability investments?
We align everything we do with our business model. As a vertically integrated company, we manage everything in-house from product design to product development to manufacturing and distribution. Generating renewable energy onsite fits perfectly within our business philosophy, and allows us to better control utility costs, help power our manufacturing facilities without any interruptions or delay to our customers, and maintain our commitment to being good stewards of the earth.
4. Why do you think projects like solar are important for your team members, customers and patients?
Solar energy provides a reliable and independent source of energy. It allows us to control costs and produce clean energy to help power our buildings. It’s an important aspect of how we make a positive difference in the world around us. When we take concentrated steps to properly care for the earth’s natural resources, it helps us reduce our environmental impact over time and promote a better future for our team members, our customers and the patients who benefit from our products.
5. Are there any key insights from your latest solar project that you’d like to share with other companies looking at solar investments?
Apart from solar PV systems being the right choice for us for environmental and sustainability reasons, the technology has matured to be a very cost effective and relatively low-maintenance source of renewable energy. I would highly recommend implementing commercial solar systems if the energy demand in a building is small to moderate, or if the objective is peak shaving. Regardless of the particular components used in any solar system, it is very important to partner with the right company so both can benefit from the system in the long term.
For more information on Applied Medical’s sustainability efforts, visit appliedmedical.com/sustainability.