Computer modelled heat recovery could slash processors' energy bills

Thursday 29 July 2010

In the first part of a special edition on plant efficiency, we look at the results of a recently published Australian project, which found that a combination of computer modelling and dehydrator redesign can cut energy bills in half in dried fruit manufacture.

The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), in collaboration with Horticulture Australia Limited and the Australian Prune Industry Association, determined that drying prunes was much more efficient, by up to 50 per cent, if processors recycled exhaust heat from dehydrating tunnels and used solar power.

Lead researcher Dr Henry Sabarez, who is based at CSIRO, said that the Australian prune industry realised a couple of years ago that it needed to improve cost efficiency in the dehydration process to remain competitive and to mitigate the environmental impacts of production.

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