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AB Energy’s new trigeneration system for the Garofalo pasta factory
Innovation is combined with tradition: the AB Energy group has designed, built and installed a new trigeneration plant for the historic Garofalo pasta factory in Gragnano (Naples). The Brescia-based group managed the energy efficiency optimisation of the entire pasta production chain, exploiting the technological and practical potential of natural gas-fuelled cogeneration. The choice of the prestigious Neapolitan company, famous throughout the world as a symbol of Mediterranean flavour and known for its attention to product quality and great respect for its place of origin, came from an awareness of how trigeneration can combine optimisation of energy costs with a genuine commitment to the environment. The AB Group technicians installed a high-efficiency version of the Ecomax 26HE trigeneration system in the Gragnano pasta factory, in a configuration specifically developed for the plant’s specific needs.
This was designed to integrate seamlessly with existing installations, particularly in regard to flows of thermal energy use.
The system was installed and made operational within just a few months of the approval of the feasibility plan. The installation was performed entirely by specialised AB Group personnel, taking care to keep the plant as active as possible, without affecting the flow of production.
The installation is the result of the AB Group’s applied research and is unique in Europe as a design and production model.
The electricity is entirely consumed by the plant, with control of the generator in zero grid-exchange mode, in order to prevent the transfer of power to the grid at night, when the pasta factory is not in full operation.
The thermal energy is also entirely consumed by the factory’s appliances: the pasta production process involves the use of both overheated and chilled water, and some of the hot water is also used for heating the work areas during the winter months.
The choice of technology has thus allowed the attainment of high output, while greatly reducing CO2 emissions.
The various technologies used by the generator set for the reduction of pollutant emissions are among the best currently available on the market. The first of these prevents the formation of pollutants by means of a combustion regulation system, and another reduces the levels of carbon monoxide produced during combustion through the use of an oxidising catalyst.
AB Energy also designed and built the connections with the existing installations in the Garofalo plant, particularly the overheated water network, the cold water system and the electrical circuits, thus ensuring perfect compatibility with the technology already in place.
The overall efficiency of the system exceeds 85%.