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New STELA BiTurbo dryer – even cheaper grain drying

New STELA BiTurbo dryer –  even cheaper grain drying

Grain drying is an ideal preservation method, which is necessary in case of storing corn, sunflower or rape seed, but often also cereals. During a wet harvest season, such was this year, having one's own dryer is a great advantage, as outsourcing could be quite expensive. Thanks to new STELA BiTurbo dryers supplied by PAWLICA the grain drying is now even cheaper than before.

STELA-LAXHUBER GmbH is a family business with an eighty-year-long history. It currently offers a wide range of dryers, suitable not only for grain, but also fruit, saw dust, wood chips and digestate. “STELA dryers are made of tempered aluminium that has a total resistance to corrosion. Their capacities range between 5 and 250 t/h. The final product is always tailor-made, offering several options of heating, ventilation, heat recovery, control of dust, noise and automatic moisture control. The dryers on offer are batch or continuous, mobile or stationary. All types are controlled by SIEMENS industrial automatic control with a keyboard and data display on a screen,” says Ing. Pawlica.

STELA-LAXHUBER dryers have always boasted extremely low consumption of gas and electricity, and low fuel costs for drying one ton of product of 1% moisture. “If you use the STELA-LAXHUBER dryer for rape seed, cereals and mainly corn, the return on investment is approximately two years,” says Managing Director, Ing. Petr Pawlica, MBA.

STELA dryers are also highly valued for being grain-friendly. No mechanical damage to the grain or reduce in germination is caused during the drying process.

A revolution in corn drying

Last year, the STELA-LAXHUBER company introduced a revolutionary BiTurbo technology allowing for two-phase heating. “The new generation of BiTurbo dryers uses an entirely new technological elements whose benefits are the reduction in heat consumption by up to 15% and limiting damage to the grain during the drying process. Unlike previous models, the new ones have two combustion burners, each of which can be set to a different temperature. As a result, during a two-stage drying process, it is possible to significantly regulate the amount of heat and thus save a lot of money,” says Ing. Pawlica. More specifically, the tower of the dryer is divided into two parts with different drying temperatures. While very wet grain is dried in the upper part at temperatures between 90 and 100°C, the final drying takes place in the lower part at much higher temperatures (130 – 150°C). Because corn is dried gradually, the grain is not damaged, and a considerable amount of energy is saved. If the grain coming from the field is not so wet, it is possible to use one burner only, the lower one, while the upper part may be warmed up only.

Each section of the STELA BiTurbo dryer has also its own fan and uses different type of air for heating. In the upper part of the dryer only, fresh heated air is used for drying and it is discharged out of the tower after being used. In the lower part, the fresh air is mixed together with used air, saving some energy again. The dryers are also equipped with a new system of two-phase dust separation called Combi Clean Air.

How it works

As explained by Ing. Martin Novák, the project engineer of PAWLICA company, thanks to a revolutionary air duct arrangement in STELA dryers with BiTurbo technology the required amount of warm air is reduced by up to 50%, resulting also in a reduction in heat energy consumption by up to 15% compared to conventional dryers with active heat recovery. He goes on to explain that the fresh air is aspirated in the lower area of the drying plant, heated up by a gas burner for example and led into the lower drying section, the so-called dry product area, together with preheated air from the so-called cooling zone. Contrary to the current drying processes, here the grain is dried by a hot air of up to 150°C without damaging it as the moisture of the grain is about 18 – 20 % at this section. Hot air leaving the lower area is led into the upper zone of the drying plant by an axial fan, where it is mixed with fresh air sucked in at the upper part of the dryer. The fresh air is heated by another burner to reach the temperature of 120–130 °C. The heated air first goes through the upper wet grain section, before it is exhausted outside by the second axial fan.

New dryers also in Poland and Slovenia

New STELA BiTurbo dryers are high-capacity machines, and are therefore suitable for large farms, food companies and agricultural purchases. They can operate with consumption below 1 m3 of gas per ton and 1%. “The energy savings are substantial so the investment pays off. For example, when drying 10 thousand tons of corn annually, the return on investment varies from one year to two years,” says Ing. Pawlica. Several companies in Germany and France have already expressed interest in these dryers. Two dryers have been also supplied by PAWLICA Ltd. abroad. The first one was built as part of the project for the food group Panvita near Maribor in Slovenia. Besides a BiTurbo dryer with capacity 100 t/h, a Gebr. RUBERG 100 RUV pre-cleaner and transport systems by Skandia have been also delivered. All are explosion-proof, ATEX certified models and have a dust limit of maximum 10 mg/m3. At the same time, a refurbishment of existing storage bins have been carried out there. PAWLICA Ltd. implemented this project jointly with its partner, STELA Engineering GmbH. “As farmers were very interested in it, we held an open house event here this October. On this occasion visitors could see our dryer and cleaner in operation during the post-harvest treatment of corn,” says Ing. Pawlica.

The second interesting project, the installation of the BiTurbo dryer with capacity 30 t/h, has been implemented for the Polish company Konspol, based in Gierlatow. An intake installation with capacity 100 t/h has been built here, as well as a pair of large BROCK silos (16,000 m3) and five hopper tanks with capacity 30 tons each and a tensometric weighing system. The company demanded a high quality cleaning, so a Gebr. RUBERG RVS100 cleaner was installed here and was also connected to the existing silos.

See more on BiTurbo

Slovenian company Panvita – photo gallery 


Sušička STELA BITURBO, Panvita Group, Slovinsko
Sušička STELA BITURBO, Panvita Group, Slovinsko
Sušička STELA BITURBO, Panvita Group, Slovinsko