Planned Iowa ethanol plant will use Hydro-Thermal slurry heater

By Haley Olson | June 28, 2017

Wisconsin-based Hydro-Thermal will provide a turnkey slurry heating system for a planned Elite Octane ethanol plant in Atlantic, Iowa.

The 120 MMgy plant is set to be online in the third quarter of 2018, according to Hydro-Thermal. The company says the plant is one of the first to incorporate Hydro-Thermal’s Hydroheater before it is set to open. The Hydroheater is installed in about a dozen existing plants.  

“We have a long history within the ethanol and other industries,” said Mike Hollenberg, Hydro-Thermal project manager. “The new slurry Hydroheater system has been an offering Hydro-Thermal has had in place for roughly five years.”

Hollenberg said the system optimizes a plant’s production, helping access starch availability before fermentation, providing precise temperature control, creating a potential for enzyme reduction, and eliminating cold and hot spots.

“When you have the opportunity to build a new plant, you have a chance to incorporate several of the things the industry has improved on over the past decade, and I would consider the Hydro-Thermal application for heating slurry one of those learning applications,” said Nick Bowdish, CEO of Elite Octane, in a statement. “Today, we are able to eliminate the cook tubes and a few other pieces of standard plant equipment and instead spend the capital on more efficient systems, like the Hydro-Thermal system.”

In the Elite Octane plant, the Hydroheater will control temperature by catching cold flour, eventually mixing it with hot corn mash to continue the conversion process.

“The industry continues and will continue to focus on optimization to include energy, chemical and other cost savings input factors” Hollenberg said. “We will continue with this and other turnkey technology offerings to current and future customers.”