Improving Ethanol Plant Efficiency

Cindy Zimmerman

Improving the efficiency of ethanol plants is critical for a number of reasons, but especially in light of high corn prices that are cutting into margins for producers.

FEW 08 PoetPOET has been working on improving the efficiency of their plants for years now according to President and CEO Jeff Broin (pictured here on the left with Nathan Schock, director of public relations for POET).

“We’ve been developing technology for many years that lower water usage, lower energy usage, increase through-put,” Broin said at the 2008 Fuel Ethanol Workshop. “As we’ve developed these technologies they’ve allowed us to be a little more efficient than the average guy. As with any industry, the low-cost producer is going to survive long term.”

POET’s plant in Ashton, Iowa received an Energy Star Combined Heat & Power Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency at the FEW this year. “The Ashton plant actually takes the steam not just to power the plant but then uses that same steam to run the turbine,” said Broin. “So that co-generation is a double use of that same steam which is highly efficient.”

POET currently has 23 plants in operation producing about 1.3 billion gallons of ethanol and they have three more plants under construction in Ohio and Indiana.

Listen to an interview with Jeff Broin from the 2008 FEW here:

2008 Fuel Ethanol Workshop Photo Album

Ethanol, Facilities, FEW, News