April 21, 2008

Study : Ethanol Production Has Become More Efficient

Study shows ethanol production has become more efficient from 2001 to 2006.A new study conducted by the Argonne National Laboratory for the Renewable Fuels Association shows that ethanol production has become more efficient since 2001. The study analyzed ethanol producer survey responses to determine how ethanol production in 2006 compared to 2001. Major findings of the study include...

  • Ethanol yield per bushel of corn increased 6.4% for dry mills and 2.4% for wet
  • Total energy use (fossil and electricity) decreased 21.8% in dry mills and 7.2% in wet mills from 2001 survey.
  • Another major change from 2001 survey is 15.7% decrease in grid electricity use
    in dry mills.
  • There is a shift in process fuel use from coal to natural gas in the dry mills.
  • More than one third (37%) of the dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS), the feed co-product of dry mill ethanol production, was sold as wet feed which
    reduces heat demand in the plant.
  • CO2 collection and production as a co-product is on the rise that a total of 23.5% of the ethanol production capacities responded exported CO2.
  • Finally, water consumption in dry mills decreased 26.6% from 2001 survey.
It is pretty interesting to see the progress that ethanol production made over the five years of the study period. Having written several posts that deal with new technologies that hold the potential to make ethanol production even more efficient, it will be interesting to see what happens over the next few years.

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