FUJIFILM Hunt Chemicals Reduces Energy Footprint with Miura Boilers
In 2009, FUJIFILM Hunt Chemicals in Dayton, TN, underwent an energy efficiency survey — a joint effort with Tennessee Tech University and the U.S Department of Energy. The results of that survey revealed a need to upgrade the factory’s outdated steam plant — ultimately leading the company to replace their old locomotive-style boilers with two Miura EX-200 SGO dual-fuel boilers. Since this chemical processing company making the switch, FUJIFILM’s Maintenance Manager Manuel Calero says they are already saving 33 percent in natural gas costs, with the expectation to improve that number even further.
“We once had two boilers with a full combined output of 450 horsepower,” says Calero,” We now have one on-demand 200 horsepower Miura boiler basically running the facility on low fire, with the second on-demand Miura sitting there on standby.”
As a manufacturer of a diverse range of chemical products, FUJIFILM Hunt Chemicals not only operates 24/7, but also experiences radical shifts in demand for steam at different times. For these needs, the ability to configure the Miura boilers in modular sequence has proven quite efficient.
“The Miura boilers manage our ‘peaks and valleys’ very, very well,” says Calero. “Whenever a reactor comes online to be heated, the Miura boiler provides the steam required, and maybe 10 to 15 minutes later it goes to low fire and drops off.”
The dual-boiler system has also reduced the plant’s downtime during needed maintenance and repairs. “We recently had to upgrade our gas meter and tweak our condensate-dumping system,” Calero says. “The facility didn’t even ‘notice’ we had done that. There was no drop-in service.”
Maximized Use of Space
The unique “once through” design of Miura boilers enables them to produce steam from a cold start in five minutes or less. It also means they can store less water, making them compact in design — a feature which allowed FUJIFILM to install them in their original steam plant facility without the need for expansion — a cost savings the company estimates at about $70,000.
Reduced Harmful Emissions
Not only does Miura’s on-demand steam design save the company significantly in energy costs — the boilers are known for their low emissions of harmful gases, releasing much less CO2 and nitrogen oxides (NOx) than their conventional counterparts. This feature falls nicely in line with the factory’s “green initiative” strategy to reduce their carbon footprint. “Our Miura boilers will give us a major improvement for next year’s report,” says Calero. “It’s a much more environmentally friendly system than what we had before.”
Reduced energy consumption, less intrusive downtimes and low emissions have combined to make the switch to Miura boilers an excellent investment for FUJIFILM Hunt Chemicals all around. “We expect the project to pay itself back in about two years,” says Calero.