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January | February 2013 Profitable aquafeed moisture control

International Aquafeed is published six times a year by Perendale Publishers Ltd of the United Kingdom. All data is published in good faith, based on information received, and while every care is taken to prevent inaccuracies, the publishers accept no liability for any errors or omissions or for the consequences of action taken on the basis of information published. ©Copyright 2013 Perendale Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means without prior permission of the copyright owner. Printed by Perendale Publishers Ltd. ISSN: 1464-0058

The International magazine for the aquaculture feed industry

FEATURE

Profitable aquafeed

moisture control
such that the mean MC can be maximized without exceeding the upper specification limit (USL). Fortunately, a solution for poor MC sensing and control was supplied by the derivation of a MC sensing and control model from first principles. The Delta T model: MC = K1(ΔT)p – K2/Sq relates the product MC exiting a dryer to the temperature drop (ΔT) of hot air after contact with the wet product and the production rate or evaporative load (S). The model solved the two main problems with MC sensing and control by producing. Firstly, a rugged, reliable ‘inside-the-dryer’ moisture sensor; and secondly, a new and powerful control algorithm that precisely adjusts the set point for evaporative load changes. aquafeed inside the harsh environment of a dryer while it is being dried with a belt dryer. As illustrated by Figure 2, patented Delta T technology invented a new type MC sensor that can be installed ‘inside-the-dryer’ which reduces the dead time (time to detect a disturbance entering with the feed) by at least 30 percent. Since dead time is directly proportional to the product standard deviation, use of this ‘insidethe-dryer’ sensor reduces the standard deviation at least 30 percent below that achieved by use of currently used MC sensing methods. It should be noted that use of raw Delta T data will not work—it must be processed by the model before use. Figure 3 illustrates the advantage of reducing dead time for aquafeed drying. Three possible locations are shown for installing the MC sensor. Dead time for each installation point is the time it takes for the individual MC method to detect a change in evaporative load entering with the feed. The lowest dead time is 14 minutes for the Delta T sensor inside the dryer; the next lowest dead time is 20 minutes for a MC meter located at the dryer exit; the longest

by John Robinson, President, Drying Technology Inc, USA quafeed producers are losing about $4 to $10 per ton of product produced in terms of lost production, higher energy consumption and lowered product quality. These losses can be recovered by substituting a more effective moisture (MC) sensing and control technology for currently used traditional MC sensing and control.

A

Figure 1: Typical MC distribution curve produced by poor MC sensing and control

A new type of MC sensor
Figure 2 describes how the Delta T MC sensor continuously measures the MC of

The control problem
Two main problems prevent traditional MC sensing and control technology from being effective. Firstly, the lack of timely and accurate MC data upon which to base control action (poor MC sensing). Secondly, the inability to correctly adjust for evaporative load changes entering with the feed. Figure 1 shows a typical normal MC distribution curve produced by traditional MC sensing and control technology. The curve is relatively wide as a result of the effect of high MC standard deviation. It is obvious that the wider the MC variation the lower the target mean MC must be to prevent production of wet product. Consequently, use of currently available control technology forces manufacturers to over dry their products which causes significant costs in terms of lower production, higher energy usage, and poorer quality. Figure 1 illustrates the effect of poor MC sensing and control on MC variation.

Figure 2: Delta T ‘inside-the-dryer’ MC sensor

The control solution
Losses caused by poor MC sensing and control may be recovered if the MC variation (standard deviation) is reduced
Figure 3: Delta T reduces dead time on belt dryer

14 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | January-February 2013

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FEATURE

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January-February 2013 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | 15

FEATURE

Delta T

BREAKTHROUGH
in Aquafeed Technology
Many leading aquafeed manufacturers in the industry count on Extru-Tech to engineer the perfect aquafeed production solution. industry leading equipment and engineered production advantages will give you the upper hand over the competition. could you use a cost effective improvement in performance and finished product quality? contact one of the Aquafeed consultants at Extru-Tech today at 785-284-2153.

Current

MC

Figure 4: Delta T MC control allows mean MC to be maximized without exceeding USL

Figure 5: Outside view of Delta T MC system

E ExTRU-TEcH
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Take this opportunity to visit www.extru-techinc.com/at to see the next level in aquafeed technology.

dead time is 30 minutes for MC samples taken downstream of the dryer and analyzed by a laboratory instrument. For the above conditions, the Delta T accomplishes dead time reductions of 30 percent and 53 percent below that for the moisture meter method and the laboratory MC sample method respectively. The standard deviation reductions would also be reduced 30 percent and 53 percent respectively.

MC in spite of frequent changes in evaporative load entering the dryer with the feed. Proprietary methods are used in adapting the model to the dryer and product.

Application of Delta T to aquafeed manufacture
The above-mentioned reduction in standard deviation enables the target MC to be increased by 0.5 percent to as much as 1.25 percent without fear of producing wet product which might mold in transit or storage. Figure 4 shows schematically how reducing the standard deviation enables the mean MC to be increased by shifting the Delta T curve rightward until the upper + 3 standard deviation points (USL) of both curves coincide. The difference in mean MCs represents the economic gain from using Delta T technology.

Results and conclusions
From 10 to 25 lbs of additional water can be safely sold with the product per ton of product produced without exceeding the upper specification limit using this new technology. The return to the aquafeed manufacturer is $4 to $10 per ton of product for a wholesale product price of $800 per ton. In addition, energy savings of approximately four to seven percent possible. The Delta T has been successfully applied in the US for MC sensing and control of many products, including aquafeed using a Beltomatic conveyor dryer. More InforMatIon:
Website: www.moisturecontrols.com

®

A new MC control algorithm
As a result of its theoretical basis, the Delta T technology provides a new control algorithm that enables precise calculation of the set point necessary to maintain the target

P.O. Box 8 • 100 Airport Road Sabetha, KS 66534, USA Phone: 785-284-2153 Fax: 785-284-3143 extru-techinc@extru-techinc.com

Corporate offiCe

www.extru-techinc.com

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16 | InternatIonal AquAFeed | January-February 2013
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LINKS
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Chicken viscera for fish feed formulation Profitable aquafeed moisture control Spray-dried plasma
– from porcine blood in diets for Atlantic salmon parrs

The shrimp feed industry in China
– an overview

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