Solae, LLC, a world-leading producer of soy-based ingredients for food manufacturing companies worldwide, was challenged by high humidity levels and rising energy costs at its production and packaging plant in Remington, Indiana. To remedy the situation, Solae enlisted Trane Turnkey Contracting Services.
The Solae plant in Remington, Indiana, with a 40,000 square
foot main building and a five-story packaging tower, was
difficult to cool. It was a struggle to maintain high product
quality levels during spring and summer when temperature
and humidity levels exceeded ideal production conditions.
During such times, the plant was forced to discard an
estimated 10 to 15 percent of product produced.
Much needed plant upgrades would have to adhere to strict
installation requirements in order to keep the plant explosion
proof and free of flammable vapors. In addition, any
equipment installed was required to be 4 feet to 8 feet off
the ground to stay within zone classifications.
Based on a thorough understanding of plant business goals,
infrastructure needs and safety requirements, the Trane team
determined the best solutions to maximize comfort, efficiency
High-efficiency HVAC systems maintain temperature and
A Trane T-Series Climate Changer™ advanced air handler
maintains humidity levels at 30 percent and temperatures
within a margin of 2ºC to 4ºC. It also provides sufficient
cooling for the previously under-served packaging tower.
A second, more reliable chilled water system was added. The
system incorporates outside air for higher energy efficiency
during colder months.
System controls help assure optimal performance
Trane Tracer™ programmable controllers were integrated into
the plant system to keep the air handler, chillers and pumps
running at optimum levels. The expanded plant system
includes additional monitors and sensors, and offers the
flexibility of remote access from any computer.
Service agreement extends equipment life
A Trane Scheduled Service Agreement extends the useful life
of the systems, reducing costly repairs and improving
performance. It assures that all periodic maintenance is being
performed, by factory authorized technicians, as scheduled.
The Solae project is expected to provide over $350,000 per
year in energy and operational savings with a payback of less
than two years. Annual improvements include:
• Product loss down by 2.5 percent
• Equipment downtime reduced
• Energy use cut by nearly 25,500 MMBtu
• CO2 emissions down by over 26 million lb
• Solvent emissions reduced nearly 16,500 gal
• Potable water use cut by 2.5 million gal
• Wastewater down 2.1 million gal
"Trane walked our plant to see the challenges we faced
firsthand," said Chris Steinbrenner, assistant plant manager,
Solae. "We needed to meet some very specific humidity and
temperature requirements to ensure the quality of our
product. Trane responded quickly with an effective solution."
"The plant no longer needs to alter production based on
weather conditions," added Eric Barber, senior production
engineer, Solae. "Previously, this was a common occurrence
during high humidity months."
The Solae Remington plant includes a five-story packaging tower.