Use of Waste Heat for Starch Drying at Agrana

| Agrana Stärke GmbH is a leading specialist in processing and adding value to high quality agricultural commodities such as corn, potatoes and wheat, and is part of the Agrana group.

In the context of the European co-founded H2020 project Dryficiency, which is coordinated by AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH , Agrana integrates a closed loop high temperature heat pump in its continuous starch drying process at the company’s production plant in Pischelsdorf, Lower Austria.

The DryFiciency heat pump demonstrator consists of innovative heat pump components which were developed within the DryFiciency project: a modified semi-hermetic screw compressor by Bitzer ( and a novel lubricant developed by FUCHS Schmierstoffe GmbH. OpteonMZ is used as working fluid. It is an environmentally friendly synthetic refrigerant for high temperature applications supplied by Chemours Group

The heat pump will be integrated in the starch drying process, that requires hot air at about 160°C. It recovers waste heat from other drying processes and reduces the steam consumption of the dryer, which is provided by a natural gas fired power plant. The heat pump demonstrator has a heating capacity of approx. 400 kW, which is about 10% of the starch dryer’s heat demand. The heat supply temperatures range from 110 to 160°C. The heat pump demonstrator plant shall decrease the yearly end energy consumption by 2200 MWh and contribute to save CO 2 emissions of about 500 t.

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EHPA invites everyone to submerge themselves in the possibilities that heat pumps are capable to offer in several industrial sectors. To read more stories the updated booklet is currently available on EHPA’s website.