Slurry Tank Heating
Hydro-Thermal’s slurry tank solution has several key benefits over sparging. These benefits include:
- Higher quality starch conversion. The condensation of steam bubbles prevents hot spots from occurring and results in a consistent temperature at the Hydroheater discharge. This prevents denatured enzymes and retrograded starch resulting in better enzyme utilization and higher quality starch conversion.
- Accurate temperature control. When using a Hydroheater for slurry tank heating, all of the slurry will enter the tank at the correct temperature, and there will be minimal temperature variation across the tank. This will allow the enzymes to be optimized for the full retention time required and will result in higher starch conversion before the downstream Jet Cooker.
- Reduced maintenance. Keeping all of the steam injection contained at one point and externally of the slurry tank will prevent damage to the tank from the spargers. It will reduce the amount of unscheduled or scheduled maintenance hours required for fixing the steam sparger or possibly the slurry tank.
- Energy savings. All of the steam will be condensed in the Hydroheater before it is discharged back into the slurry tank and no steam will be lost to atmosphere. This will reduce the amount of steam needed for the same temperature rise at the slurry tank and there will be lower natural gas usage at the boiler.
- Particle size reduction. The additional shear point added to the process will help reduce the particle size exposing more available starch and break up “dough balls”. This will allow a larger surface area for enzyme contact for the full retention time which will improve the starch conversion process.