Pannonia Bio in Hungary is the largest ethanol plant in Europe and one of the world’s most efficient refineries. In line with its mission to mitigate climate change, the company needed a reliable and cost-effective solution for boosting the capability of its distillation and fermentation cooling processes to support an increase in production.
Dry or evaporative cooling
Following the initial contact in 2018 when Pannonia Bio representatives visited the Kelvion booth at the ACHEMA trade fair in Frankfurt, we researched the options of dry cooling versus evaporative cooling.
The main priority was to cool the water to 27 ⁰C. Initially, we explored using water from the river Danube as a cooling media. It would be passed through heat exchangers to cool the water from existing cooling towers. However, this would have meant significant capital expenditure.
In this case, we recommended evaporative cooling as the more economical solution. This involved installing three cooling tower cells for the fermentation and distillation process applications.
First, we visited the Pannonia Bio site to assess the positioning and configuration. The cells are based on our standard cooling tower model and customized to meet the site’s specific requirements. We also increased the height to fit better with the existing cooling towers.
The new cooling towers were delivered in March 2019 and assembly was completed in May. They are now operating effectively and to the customer’s satisfaction.