Removing water or other solvents from a product – be it in a liquid form, a filter cake, a centrifuge discharge or semi dry particles – to produce a dry powdered product, requires a lot of energy.
The steadily climbing oil prices and tighter regulations on CO2 emissions have made energy conservation and saving a priority to be implemented into the technologies developed by GEA Niro.
Saving energy can be done in many ways and mentioned are just a few obvious examples that can be applied to your existing plant or as something you should make sure to implement in your future projects:
- Invest in a plant that is designed for long operation hours (with no or little deposits in the drying chamber) without the need to stop for cleaning - either dry or wet. Heating up the spray drying plant after a shutdown is costly.
- If you already have a spray drying plant, make sure it is not running idle and contact GEA Niro's Plant Upgrade & Rebuild division for advice on how to upgrade your existing plant with the newest energy saving technologies. This also includes solving problems with deposits in your drying chamber perhaps caused by uneven drying air distribution or because you have changed product composition or recipies since plant start up.
- Increase the drying air temperature and solids content in the feed (if possible) without jeopardizing plant performance and final product quality.
- Depending on the composition of your product, use a fluid bed dryer whenever possible after the spray dryer for drying in two stages.
- Preheat the concentrate.
- Recover the heat in the exhaust air from the spray dryer and the combustion gas from the indirect fired air heater and use it to preheat the drying air.
- If you use an evaporator (TVR or MVR) in your process, utilize the warm condensate to preheat the drying air.
- Change dampers in air supply systems for fans with directly coupled motors with frequency converters.
- Use product recovery systems with high efficiency and a low pressure drop such as the SANICIP™ bag filter
- Depending on your existing spray dryer type, you may consider changing your air disperser to a new GEA Niro low pressure drop design and thereby further reduce energy consumption.
GEA Niro has unmatched experience and expertise in process drying and heat transfer technology and is one of the world’s leading suppliers of drying equipment, including gas and oil fired heaters and heat exchangers. We have the technology insight, product experience, and engineering expertise needed to create a total heat recovery solution for your plant, complete with system control. Performance is optimized by a heat recovery management system that ensures you that heat saved in one part of your plant is not lost somewhere else.