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Latest publications

Special Reprint from SUGAR INDUSTRY  141 (2016) No. 3, 156–158 

An upgrade for batch centrifugals

by Dirk Seebaum, Sven Weidner

In the sugar industry, operating costs can be permanently reduced without making high investments. Calculations have shown that investments in upgrades of existing plants will pay themselves off after only 95 days in case of DynFAS FS upgrades, or 240 days for drive upgrades. With its retrofit concept, BMA Automation located in Braunschweig is aiming at three targets: a better utilisation of the centrifugal capacity, increased energy efficiency, and the use of innovative operating modes. Moreover, current standards with regard to plant safety are implemented by an upgrade, and a higher product quality is achieved thanks to innovative sensor technology.
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Abstract from Sugar Journal, June 2017

Continuous crystallisation of A and C product

by A. Lehnberger, D. Laue and R. Hempelmann

Changing market conditions are forcing cane sugar factories to find ways of improving the quality of the produced sugar and increasing the sugar output. Numerous process details from crystallisation, which are commonly applied in beet sugar factories, but not yet considered to be state of the art in the cane sugar industry, have in recent years been implemented in cane sugar factories.

Continuous crystallisation of bold A sugar in a vertical continuous pan (VKT) was verified while working at very low temperature differences. Process automation together with far-sighted operation of the process produces A massecuite of a consistent quality. The use of 4th vapour for continuous crystallisation of A product contributes significantly to steam savings in the sugar production process.

The yield improvement obtained by continuous cooling crystallisation of C product directly depends on the outlet temperature reached. The oscillating vertical cooling crystalliser (OVC) system achieves low molasses purities thanks to a final temperature of 40°C and the low percentage of fine crystals.  

More about crystallisation

Reprint from Vol. 141 (2016) No. 2, 86–90

Environmental technology: Fluidised-bed steam dryers – latest developments and practical experience

by Gerald Caspers, Klaus Nammert, Holger Fersterra, Hartmut Hafemann

Fluidised-bed steam dryers have been in use for industrial- scale drying of pressed beet pulp for more than 20 years. This highly energy-efficient process can be considered to be state of the art in the industry. Scientific laboratory and pilot-plant testing have provided the basis for a detailed description of the principles of flu - idisation and drying in superheated water vapour. Advances in production data acquisition, in particular regarding the options for the real-time presentation and evaluation of high-resolution operating data (Industry 4.0), have opened up new potentials for optimisation of the drying process in fluidised-bed steam dryers. By analysing and interpreting sequences of events, or simultaneous events, it is now pos- sible to analyse process behaviour in great depth. This allows malfunctions to be avoided by improved design or, assisted by suitable measuring and control systems, to be detected at an early stage. Failures can then be prevented altogether by initiating automated countermeasures. On the basis of more recent insights gained from the analy- sis of faults and disruptions using modern operating data acquisition, BMA’s fluidised-bed steam dryer (WVT) has been subjected to fundamental technological and technical improvements, so it now meets today’s demands for effi - ciency and reliability. Modifications include the product inlet, the distribution plate and several other parts, in addition to the known and patented PPS (Plug Protection System; EP 2457649 B1), and the patented rotary weir (EP 2146167 B1).
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Reprint from SUGAR INDUSTRY / ZUCKERINDUSTRIE 140 (2015) No. 12, 748–752 Verlag Dr. Albert Bartens, Berlin, Germany

A look at technological and technical tower extraction trends

by Thomas Schulze, Andreas Lehnberger, Joachim Pfauntsch, Thomas Frankenfeld

Tower extraction has become the state-of-the-art technology for extracting sugar from cossettes. Sugar yield and plant economy are factors that have made this technology prevail over other extraction methods. In particular for high throughput rates per extraction line, tower extraction plants are unrivalled. The possibilities to reduce the energy consumption during extraction are shown using the example of a technologically leading European sugar producer. Thanks to the installation of large extraction plants in the sugar factories of Schweizer Zucker AG at Frauenfeld and Aarberg, the extraction losses and also the raw juice draft could be reduced significantly. Based on the records of the campaigns from 2000 to 2014, the paper reports on results of the operation of a modern tower extraction plant. In the more recent past, there has been a trend towards longer beet campaigns, and sugar factories are increasing their capacities due to economic reasons. Depending on the project conditions, various extension concepts are coming into effect. Special emphasis has to be placed on future-oriented material selection.
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604 International Sugar Journal | August 2014

Falling-film evaporator plant for a cane sugar factory: Presentation of the concept and operating resultsLehnberger

(1), F. Brahim (1) and S.S. Mallikarjun (2); (1) BMA Braunschweigische Maschinenbauanstalt AG, Germany, (2) Indian Cane Power Ltd, India

In the cane sugar industry, Robert evaporators are generally considered the preferred evaporator design because of the issues associated with the scaling of heating surfaces. An evaporator set concept has been developed in collaboration with a supplier to utilise falling-film evaporators in the cane sugar industry in order to benefit from the numerous advantages of this technology. In 2011, a new 5-effect evaporator set composed entirely of falling-film evaporators was designed, supplied and commissioned for the Indian Cane Power Limited (ICPL), Uttur, a sugar cane factory located in the State of Karnataka, India. The design targets for this evaporator plant were smooth operation of falling-film evaporators in the cane sugar industry, considerable reduction of the steam consumption of the sugar factory and clear increase of power export to the local power supply network. The supplier BMA accompanied this project with the preparation of mass and energy balances, process flow diagrams and process layout concepts. BMA also assisted with commissioning and chemical cleaning of the plant.
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Reprint from Vol. 138 (2013) No. 8, 522–524

Fluidised bed and steam drying news*

by Gerald Caspers, Klaus Nammert, Holger Fersterra, Hartmut Hafemann, Andreas Lehnberger

The drying of pressed sugar beet pulp in a pressurised fluidized bed with superheated steam is widely used in the sugar industry and can be considered to be state of the art for energy-efficient drying concepts in combined plant systems. The process has been used on a large scale in the sugar industry for more than 20 years. In the past campaign, BMA subjected existing drying systems at various locations to a number of refinements. These systematic, process engineering modifications allow the driers to work more efficiently and reliably. Feeding pressed pulp into a fluidised-bed drier is a critical phase in the drying process and can lead to malfunctions. The ability to determine the fluidisation conditions in the first drier cells provides more detailed insights into the process so that critical situations can be detected at an early stage and therefore malfunctions can be avoided. Further investigations have shown that the height of the fluidised bed has a considerable effect on adequate product transport and on the degree to which the heat from the circulated steam is utilised and, consequently, on water evaporation.
Read more 


Batch centrifugals: Have we come to the end of development?

by S. Stiegert, I. Geyer, D. Spangenberg and A. Lehnberger

For many decades, centrifugals have been absolutely vital for sugar production. In the course of time, their design and features have been modified and upgraded many times. Could it therefore be that they have reached the final stage of development? BMA’s new batch centrifugal of the E-series is setting an impressive example of how much potential for development an already highly sophisticated product still offers: As before, the sugar is spun to separate the sugar crystals from the mother liquor but the subtle difference is in the detail. This article explains what concrete benefits users will derive from the latest technical and technological insights that have been incorporated into this generation of BMA centrifugals. First practical experience confirms the success that this consistent development has brought.
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Challenges by transferring proven efficient design from beet to cane based on practical experience*

by Dr. Andreas Lehnberger

In the past, developments in beet and cane sugar factories took place separately. Both industries used to rely on their local sugar institutes and technologists, who were best aware of the local economic conditions. One major difference between the cane and beet sugar industries is the energy supply issue: Cane sugar factories are self-sufficient in energy by burning bagasse, whereas beet sugar factories need to buy their primary energy. As a result, the beet sugar industry has been striving to improve energy efficiency. Nowadays cane sugar factories are keen on improving their energy efficiency, to maximise sell of surplus power to national grid. With reference to case studies, efficient designs proven in the beet sugar industry have been successfully applied to cane sugar factories. The challenges in designing efficient sugar mills, particularly in evaporator and sugar boiling houses, are explained especially. 
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BMA - Oscillating vertical cooling crystallisers (OVC) in cane sugar factories: Return on investment after just one year

In order to achieve optimum crystal yields, sugar factories have to use cooling crystallisers for low-grade massecuite. However a number of basic conditions have to be fulfilled for excellent crystallisation results and, therefore, a high crystal content in the massecuite.
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Reprint from Vol.,137 (2012) No. 8, 518–522

Applications for drying and cooling sugar in respect of specific needs and ambient conditions*

by Hartmut Hafemann, Henning Griebel

BMA develops and builds equipment for drying and cooling sugar since quite a number of decades. The following products came out of this long period like the drum dryer/cooler and horizontal fluidised bed cooler. The latest application is BMA’s vertical fluidised bed cooler, type VFC, which has been installed and successfully been taken into operation e.g. at Imperial Sugar, Savannah USA. This paper focuses on the importance of taking into account the individual requirements and specific ambient conditions to adequately choose the drying and cooling equipment.
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