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Heat integration options based on pinch and exergy analyses of a thermosolar and heat pump in a fish tinning industrial process

Available online 23 March 2013
Publication year: 2013

Thermosolar technology is being inserted gradually in industrial activities. In order to reach high energy efficiency, thermosolar can be linked to heat pump technology, combining more efficient conventional and renewable energy support for processes. Their integration in complex processes can be improved systematically through well established analytical tools, like pinch and exergy analyses. This work presents a methodological procedure for the analysis of different options of heat integration of a solar thermal and heat pump technologies in a tuna fish tinning process. The plant is located in a climatic zone where diffuse irradiation contributes more energy to the process than beam irradiation does. Pinch and exergy analyses are applied in the context of a low and middle temperatures, where the process demands big amounts of hot water and middle pressure steam. In order to recover internal heat, pinch analysis allows to understand the complexity of the heat exchange network of the process and to define thermal tendency objectives for energy optimization. Exergy analysis quantifies the variation that the quality of energy undergoes while it is used in the process according to the different way of integration. Both analytical tools, in combination with economical variables, provide a powerful methodological procedure finding the most favourable heat integration and, by this, they help in the technological decision making and in the design phase.


► Integration of solar thermal energy in batch canning process was assessed. ► Pinch and exergy analyses were used to determine the optimal energy supply configuration. ► Combination of heat pump and solar thermal energy improves the energy efficiency and reduces fossil fuel consumption.

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