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ARS Home » Plains Area » Las Cruces, New Mexico » Cotton Ginning Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #262717

Title: Energy conservation principles

item Funk, Paul
item Hardin Iv, Robert

Submitted to: National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/5/2011
Publication Date: 4/26/2011
Citation: Funk, P.A., Hardin Iv, R.G. 2011. Energy conservation principles. National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference. 628-635.

Interpretive Summary: Twenty cotton gins in six states gave ARS scientists access to their plant while it was running. The electricity used by each motor in the plant (there typically are well over one hundred) was quantified by opening each motor's energized 480 VAC disconnect box and clamping an ammeter around each cable while the motor was under load. This information was aggregated to estimate the percentage of electrical power used for each stage of the ginning process as well as to estimate the amount of energy (fifty-eight percent) used for non-value-added functions such as material handling. These findings made it possible to recommend changes in how cotton gin plants are designed and operated. Implementation of these recommendations will save the industry money and will save the United States energy resources for years to come.

Technical Abstract: This paper and presentation discuss preliminary findings from energy audits conducted in cotton gins in six states including the allocation of motor horse power and kilowatt hours energy consumption per bale. General inferences will be drawn from information collected at gin plants of various bale-per-hour capacity and annual throughput from various parts of the cotton belt. Practices common to gins that had particularly low energy per bale costs will be shared so that the industry as a whole may benefit by implementing ideas that will lead to energy (and cost) savings.