An intro to bean heater modules
As soy bean crushers evaluate options for maximizing their operating margins and crush spreads, the option to reduce operating and maintenance costs are always welcome.
Conditioning of soy beans is a critical yet energy-intensive process in achieving target efficiency in oil extraction plants. It is also a good heat sink for utilizing waste heat from the rest of the plant.
Typical sources of waste can be:
- Vapors from meal dryer cooler
- Condensate that is otherwise returned without subcooling
Cooling of hot oil
The availability of these waste heat sources in each plant vary with the plant layout, steam source and choice of equipment used for meal drying/cooling. However, the choice of heat transfer equipment that can efficiently recover this low grade energy to heat and condition the beans is essential to finding an efficient and economically viable solution.
Solex indirect plate heat exchangers provide high density of heat transfer area within a compact design that allows for very efficient utilization of the recovered energy. The narrow channels inherent to all plate heat exchangers makes this possible by maintaining high velocities in the channels that is essential to higher rates of heat transfer.
The Bean Heater Modules developed by Solex are specifically designed for this purpose allowing existing installations to easily reduce their steam consumption, with low capex and minimal shut down for installation.
These modules can be installed on top of existing bean conditioners, allowing use of waste heat for conditioning, increase capacity or improve overall conditioning or used to replace existing tube sections that need replacement due to leakage and cracking.
The modular design makes expansion and installation simpler, cheaper and faster.
The modules are also used for complete new conditioners, with optimized design using a combination of waste heat and steam sources.
The plate design not only offers trouble free and an efficient mode of heat transfer, but also the long life of the plates in this highly abrasive environment is an added advantage that reduces wear and tear and costs associated with frequent replacement of tube sections and the downtime required for removing or repairing the leaking tubes.
The external flexible hoses connected to manifolds allow for easy isolation and maintenance. Any individual plate can be plugged without opening the system. Also, if and when replacement is required the access doors can be used to remove and replace an individual plate with minimal disruption of production.
Whether its adding capacity and performance, replacing worn out tube sections or switching to a more efficient, robust, trouble free and optimized bean conditioning option, the Bean Heater Module is technically and commercially an ideal solution.
Solex Bean Heater modules are already successfully operating and reducing steam consumption in soy bean plants in North America, Asia and Europe.
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