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US Ordnance Rural Energy for America Program Audit Earns $259,418 in Energy Efficient Project Savings

With the help of: Manufacture Nevada


U.S. Ordnance (USO) is headquartered at 300 West Sydney, McCarran, Nevada with 115 employees. U.S. Ordnance, since 1997, builds military small arms, machine guns and replacement parts. The Company sells only NATO-sanctioned weapon systems to U.S. governmental agencies and government-approved foreign leaderships and militaries. Since its start twenty-one years ago producing one product – the M60, the Company has grown to be the number two supplier in the world for NATO weapons. Until 2023, U.S. Ordnance will be the only supplier of 50 caliber weapons to the US government.

The Challenge

Due to high operational costs and safety concerns, U.S. Ordnance (USO) was focused on finding a better way to handle the 70 lb. bars used to produce their barrels. The manual process required two workers with the operator leaning inside the machine creating a potentially unsafe working condition. In an effort to improve the blanks process and safety, USO decided the incorporation of a robot, energy efficient machines, and lighting were key. They planned to add an automation cell and replace four machine centers with three modern, significantly more productive, and energy efficient machine centers. The total budgeted cost for the new equipment and lighting was $1,089,951. With this significant investment, USO was looking for ways to offset the cost of adding energy efficient automation and lighting to the facility.
U.S. Ordnance is very appreciative of the NVIE relationship and introductions made related to the energy savings.  The NVIE team provided valuable information and timely communication throughout the process.
— Tasha J. Reisz, CPA, Chief Financial Officer, US Ordnance

MEP's Role

To assist USO, NVIE introduced the USDA REAP audit and grant program designed to incentivize rural manufacturers to consider upgrades for energy efficiency. NVIE also educated USO on the energy incentives provided by NV Energy (Nevada’s power utility).

 NVIE brought in a Certified Energy Manager, to perform an ASHRAE Level 2 audit on the production facility. The audit was partially funded by a grant awarded to NVIE to offset 75% of the audit cost. With the audit complete, U.S. Ordnance was eligible to submit applications to the USDA and NV Energy for grants and incentives toward the implementation of the energy efficient projects. This was a competitive process in which only the most justified energy saving projects were awarded.  

With the help of NVIE, U.S. Ordnance had successful applications and received $9,418 in incentives from the local power utility, NV Energy, for the installation of LED lights. The increased brightness on the production floor improved working conditions and increased morale. USO was awarded a $250,000 grant from the USDA that offset nearly 25% of the entire project cost. Additionally, energy usage, maintenance costs, and labor costs were projected at a conservative savings of $311,000 per year. A modest increase in equipment usage will only increase the savings.

Created June 2, 2020, Updated July 12, 2021