Location: Cotton Ginning ResearchTitle: Cotton gin drying systems–patterns in fuel energy use
|Hardin Iv, Robert|
Submitted to: ASABE Annual International Meeting
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/18/2017
Publication Date: 7/18/2017
Citation: Funk, P.A., Hardin Iv, R.G., Terrazas, A.A. 2017. Cotton gin drying systems–patterns in fuel energy use. Proceedings of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) Annual International Meeting. Paper No. 1701520.
Interpretive Summary: Fuel cost increases and consumption variability threaten gin profitability. Twenty-three U.S. cotton gins were audited to quantify fuel use effectiveness, looking for patterns in fuel use efficiency that might correlate to various facility designs, equipment selections, or operation strategies. Identifying industry best practices is a first step to recommending best practices, and an opportunity to inform wise use of resources for future research projects addressing the fuel energy conservation topic. Reducing fuel use improves environmental stewardship and sustainability as well as industry economic viability.
Technical Abstract: Fuel cost increases and consumption variability threaten gin profitability. Twenty-three U.S. cotton gins were audited to elucidate drying system components, layouts and process control strategies that made better use of fuel. Seed cotton samples were obtained before and after each drying system and the difference in their respective moisture contents was used to quantify drying. Air flow and temperature were measured to estimate fuel consumption in each drying system. The ratio of drying to heating energy indicated fuel use efficiency. For the commercial gins analyzed so far fuel use efficiency ranged from 3 to 38 percent. First stage systems averaged 21% and second stage systems averaged 9%. From the limited data available it was not possible to separate fuel use efficiency differences by specific dryer types. Gins with duct insulation made better use of dryer fuel, and the improvement was proportional to the fraction of duct length insulated. Fuel use efficiency also improved with burner proximity to mix point.