Ceará. Brazil – The Ypióca group, which makes South America’s favourite sugarcane-based tipple aguardente, has branched out into ethanol production, with the inauguration of a major facility in the Brazilian state of Ceará.

Ypióca’s new Jaguaruana mill can produce between 40 and 60 million litres/year of ethanol and around 90 million litres/year of cachaça – another name for aguardente – as well as having the capability to produce neutral alcohol.

The $146-million, fully automated plant is expected to supply one third of Ceará’s market with ethanol for the next three to four years, increasing group turnover by around 20%. Ceará currently imports 160 million litres/year of ethanol and practically all the product goes to gas pumps.

For the project, Ypióca engaged WEG to provide automation systems, including products for the planting of the sugarcane – such as the controlling panels of the water collection and irrigation pumps – to the mills and plants.

A combination of WEG’s CFW-11M modular drive (427 A) and 500 HP 690V HGF Line motor drives the twin mills at Jaguaruana. The site also operates two sets of CFW-11M 811A inverters on its defibre, blades 1 and 2, to drive the 1100 HP, 900 HP and 500 HP motors, and several WEG transformers.

The Jaguaruana industrial site on the banks of the Jaguaribe River has an area of 100- thousand square meters and around 6- thousand hectares of land to plant sugarcane, the main raw material of the industry. The main product, ethanol is now regarded as a sound source of clean and sustainable energy, helping to reduce the emission of pollutant gases into the atmosphere.

The consumption of ethanol in Brazil took a great leap forward over the last few years with an increase in the number of flex-fuel vehicles (alcohol and gas) on the market, and reached 18 billion litres/year in 2008.

source: theengineer.co.uk


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