Background processes keep things flowing
Brewing is an energy-intensive business. 300-400 liters of water are needed to produce just 100 liters of beer. Generating the necessary electricity, heat and cooling power also generates costs and negatively influences the environment. Oettinger investigated a range of possibilities to ensure its operations run at maximum efficiency and decided that the best solution was a combined heat and power (CHP) plant with an absorption chilling unit. “At our company we set great store by regional identity and brand awareness. That is why we commissioned a firm of consulting engineers from this area and why we opted for a top-brand CHP solution from mtu
Onsite Energy in Augsburg using engines that are built in the region,” declared Metz. The ‘Moroschan’ engineering consultancy designed the facilities for the Oettingen location as well as for the brewery in Mönchengladbach and stipulated 5,000 hours of CHP plant operation a year. Downtime was to be scheduled outside brewing operations and 100% of the power generated was to be available for use by the relevant production facility. On this basis, the choice went in favor of an mtu
16V 4000 gas engine delivering 2,000 kW of electrical energy. Oettinger utilizes thermal energy discharged from the engine to heat the brewing water and in Oettingen, the exhaust is used to generate steam. “In Mönchengladbach we use the exhaust to heat water for the mash house,” explained Metz. In Oettingen, the engine’s thermal base load is sufficient to run an absorption chiller unit for cooling the storage tanks, for example. The absorption chiller unit alone accounts for 20% of requirements. Nevertheless, the natural gas CHP module is not the sole element in the company’s cogeneration concept. Beer production and the filling equipment needed to wash bottles and kegs use a lot of water and Oettinger cleans that water in its own two-stage treatment plant. In Oettingen, the biogas generated in the treatment plant is used to fuel the boiler house, for example, and is thus also utilized in the heating process.