Industries Served

Palm Oil Industry

Palm oil refineries utilized many heating mechanisms to further process palm oil into our daily necessities products. This is why palm oil is considered one of the most versatile raw materials in the world. Over the years, HISAKA has worked with palm oil refineries to improve their process efficiency and sustainability by recovering thermal energy through economizers.

Looking for ways to maximize the energy efficiency of your palm oil refinery? HISAKA Thermal Products could be the solution.

Palm Oil Process Flow
Palm Oil Industry

Thermal Solution Products For Palm Oil (Refinery)

Fermentation Process
Process Flow Diagram

Deodorization Process

Deodorization process of palm oil is the final process to process crude palm oil into edible palm oil, which in the deodorization process, it involves many different processing stages.

Crude palm oil transported to a palm oil refinery stored in a storage tank will first undergo purification process.

First, the degumming process is used to separate the gums by adding phosphoric acid to heated crude palm oil (the gums are the impurities that will be removed in the bleaching stage). Next, the treated palm oil will be undergoing bleaching process where bleaching earth (activated clay) is used to absorb all the color pigments contains in the treated palm oil.

After the bleaching process, the bleached palm oil will be sent to the filtration process to remove all the bleaching earth. Lastly, the bleached palm oil will be undergoing deodorization process to remove the odor where the palm oil is heated and the vapor (palm fatty acid distillate (PFAD)), is removed from the oil.

Where can we apply an economizer for heat recovery in the deodorization process?

1. Deodorization stage - Gasket plate heat exchanger can be used as an economizer to control temperature of crude palm oil and RBD palm oil.

2. Deodorization stage - Fully welded or spiral heat exchanger can be used as a high temperature economizer for bleached palm oil/RBD palm oil.

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Our Suggestion On Common Maintenance Issues

High viscosity liquid clogging
Issue 1: Water scaling

This issue may happen when high concentration of CaCO3 in water. The salt is easier to scale at higher temperature.

HISAKA suggestions:
  • Plan proper preventive maintenance to avoid hard scaling.
  • Use suitable chemicals to clean the heat exchanger plate.
Water sedimentation fouling
Issue 2: Hard steam scaling

This issue is happened due to the impurities contained in the steam. After a long period of operation, the scale will build up because CaCO3 is highly deposited at higher temperature. This issue will reduce the heat transfer efficiency.

HISAKA suggestions:
  • Proper preventive maintenance planning is required to prevent hard scaling.
  • Treat the boiler feed water with sufficient chemical.
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Our Suggestion On Common Maintenance Issues

Issue 1: Impurities accumulate at inlet port hole
Issue 1: Impurities accumulate at inlet port hole

This issue may occur due to the high impurities contained in the fluid. After a long period of operation without proper preventive maintenance, the impurities will cause blockage at the distribution areas which caused an increase in pressure drop. Sometimes, solid impurities will cause erosion on the plate distribution area.

HISAKA suggestions:
  • Using bigger plate gaps model for slurry liquid
  • Plan preventive maintenance ahead to prevent damage to the plate surface.
ssue 2: Corrosion of S-frame side
Issue 2: Corrosion of S-frame side

This issue occurs due to the unit has been operated for a long period without proper maintenance or cleaning. When the heat exchanger is not properly maintained, the S-frame will be corroded due to external moisture penetrate onto the S-frame.

HISAKA suggestions:
  • Clean the frame surface and repaint it.
  • Change new D-plate.
  • Plan proper preventive maintenance.
Palm Oil Industry

Thermal Solution Products For Palm Oil (Biodiesel)

Transesterification Process
Process Flow Diagram

Transesterification Process

Transesterification is a process where conversion of triglycerides (fats) contained in oils into usable biodiesel.

First, heated triglycerides, methanol, and sodium hydroxide (catalyst) are fed into reactive distillation column to produce methyl ester (biodiesel) with glycerin.

The output of the reactive distillation (methyl ester + glycerin) is then heated with a reboiler to produce methanol, glycerol, and biodiesel and feed into the settling tank.

The settling tank will then separate biodiesel from methanol and glycerol for further processing.

Where can we apply heat recovery in the transesterification process?

1. After settling tank - Heat exchanger can be installed after the settling tank to perform heat recovery from biodiesel to heat up triglycerides.

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Our Suggestion On Common Maintenance Issues

Issue 1: Serious glycerol fouling
Issue 1: Serious glycerol fouling

This issue may occur if the unit has operated for a long period of time without any periodic cleaning. Glycerol fouls on the plate surface decreases the overall heat transfer performance of the unit.

HISAKA suggestions:
  • Plan proper preventive maintenance to avoid hard scaling.
  • If fouling tendency is high, use bigger plate gaps heat exchanger model.
  • Select suitable chemical for cleaning.
Issue 2: Damage gasket at porthole area
Issue 2: Damage gasket at porthole area

This issue may occur due to the deterioration of the gasket. The gasket that is exposed to higher temperature fluid such as superheated steam tends to has a lower lifespan due to the thermal oxidation process. This will cause leakage if the deterioration of the gasket is too severe.

HISAKA suggestions:
  • Change new set of gasket at least once a year.
  • Use higher material grade of gasket to minimize oxidation process.