IE3 motors promise impressive energy savings for odour control facility

20 December 2011

High-efficiency, IE3 class motors look set to save a UK-based pet food manufacturer around £26,000 per year on energy costs for a new odour control facility.

As part of an expansion plan, Golden Acres Petfoods intends to raise its production rate from 1,500 metric tons of dry extruded pet food a week to 2,500 metric tons. To achieve this the company needed more capacity to extract the hot odorous gas that is produced during the cooking process.

The company has built an extraction plant that takes odours from the process lines as well as providing general extraction for the production buildings. Three fans have been placed in a purpose built fan house. Two of these handle the extraction of the process gas and are powered by two ABB IE3 motors, one of 250 kW, the other of 185 kW. All the building ventilation volumes are brought together to a single fan powered by a 250 kW ABB IE3 motor.

The two airstreams – process gas and building vent air – are brought together into a concrete transfer duct where three more fans – powered by three110 kW ABB IE3 motors – blow the process gas and building vent air through the wet scrubber. When fully operational, the system will extract 500,000 m3 of air from the factory every hour.

Commenting on the project, Ian Barnes, project manager in charge of the development of new buildings and process plant on the site, said: “As well as being required under DEFRA regulations for the pet food industry, we are also keen to be a good neighbour to people living nearby. We proved the technology using a pilot wet scrubber and bio-filtration unit and the chosen technique is approved by the industry as the best available.”

The ABB motors are believed to be the first large-scale use of IE3 standard motors in the UK. Up to 96% efficient, they exceed the recently introduced EU Minimum Energy Performance Standard (MEPS) requirements.

Jim Whittaker, engineering director of Golden Acres, explains how he came to recommend these B IE3 motors for the fans: “Our fan suppliers Halifax Fan originally offered standard efficiency motors. With an energy usage of 908 kW, the total running cost per year would have been £411,860. We were keen to save as much as energy as possible, so Halifax Fan requoted to include ABB IE3 motors. The higher efficiency of the IE3 motors gave a lower energy usage of 851 kW, producing a total running cost per year of £386,013, a saving of nearly £26,000 a year over the standard efficiency solution. The payback is just under three years when the Enhanced Capital Allowance (ECA) is taken into account.”

Barnes explains further: “With the high electrical demand of the new production lines, the new facilities will require a 6 MVA supply so we are obviously keen to keep our electricity use as low as possible.”

Halifax Fan ensured that the process fans were sized to meet the exact need of the process, allowing the frame size of the fan motors to be kept as low as possible.

“Another factor in favour of IE3 motors is that ABB motors have a much higher build quality and therefore greater service life than standard motors, in addition to being eligible for the ECA,” said Whittaker. “The ABB motors are well suited for inverter operation. Large inverter driven motors require non-conducting bearings and insulation profiles to withstand the additional thermal loads at low speed. Other companies could not give us the same assurance.”

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