Smart steam boiler technology

Published:  22 October, 2019

Heiko Doppler, a Bosch customer service engineer, and Thomas Steffes, project leader at Kramer & Best, have recently handed over a new steam boiler system to André Ködel, master brewer of Park & Bellheimer's brewery in Pirmasens, south-west Germany. PWE reports.

The brewery in Rhineland-Palatinate is using an Industry 4.0 solution in the form of MEC Optimise, meaning that in future it will benefit from digitised data collection, intelligent analysis and maximum energy transparency. Park & Bellheimer expects to save around €80,000 a year in energy costs by installing this upgrade.

MEC Optimise from Bosch is a digital efficiency assistant that helps boiler attendants and operators to locate potential energy losses quickly and suggests concrete measures to address them. The efficiency assistant detects critical situations immediately and analyses the state of components based on the operating mode. The reliable prognoses enable Ködel, who is also head of operations at the Pirmasens plant, to schedule maintenance timely according to the brewery's capacity. Leading-edge predictive maintenance is consequently being brought into a traditional brewery while making its workers, machines and processes more efficient.

The data for MEC Optimise is collected and saved locally by an industrial computer built into the control cabinet. Bosch offers two different systems for transferring and visualising data, which make use either of standardised interfaces to a process control system or of a PC/tablet via WLAN.

At the brewery in Pirmasens, authorised individuals can view the statistics and analyses via the central control station, collecting all the important information about the system's energy consumption, load profile and performance, and digitally entering the results of the boiler tests at the same time.

Being networked with the secure Bosch MEC Remote monitoring system also enables data to be called up from any location, including outside of the brewery. A further advantage of remote access is that, if requested by the operator, Bosch experts can assist with troubleshooting, parameterisation and programming – cost effectively and without having to travel to the site.

Ködel commented: "Uninterruptible yet economical process heating is absolutely essential to running our brewery." The networked solutions from Bosch will help to make response times faster and make work more productive overall.

The new Bosch boiler system supplies the brewing house with steam for processes such as mashing and boiling – up to five tonnes of steam per hour are available. Components for heat recovery, a modulating natural gas burner, speed-controlled fans and various items of automation equipment help to provide the steam in a flexible and energy-saving way.

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