Aventine Renewable Energy upgrades Illinois plant to natural gas

decrease font size  Resize text   increase font size       Printer-friendly version of this article Printer-friendly version of this article

Aventine Renewable Energy, a leading producer, marketer and end-to-end supplier of ethanol, has announced completion of a $13.2 million project to upgrade its wet mill ethanol plant in Pekin, Illinois, by replacing 70-year-old coal boiler technology with two newly installed Indeck high-pressure natural gas boilers. The boiler installation is part of the more than $30 million investment Aventine is making to restore its two plants in Pekin.

The new boilers at the 160-million-gallon wet mill improve efficiency while also reducing annual emissions of sulfur dioxide by more than 13,000 tons and emissions of ash by 215 tons. As a cogeneration facility, the plant makes high-pressure steam that is run through turbines, generating 8 megawatts of electricity and using low-pressure steam in the process of corn wet milling. Three old coal boilers, including two vintage 1944 stoker boilers and a 1955 vintage steam boiler, will be permanently retired in early September.

“Ag processing plants must be rebuilt every 20 years, so we are rebuilding the Pekin wet mill to be productive for another 20 years,” explained Mark Beemer, president and CEO of Aventine, during an Aug. 15 ribbon-cutting ceremony. “In October 2013 we broke Aventine’s historical maximum production record, and we’ve broken our own records twice since then.”

To date $20 million invested in the plant complex includes $13.2 for the boilers, retubing a 1975 boiler, $1 million to fix a fermentation problem, $1.4 million to install a new starch separator and replace six old separators, installing a new $750,000 centrifuge at the yeast plant, and installing two backflow preventers for the Pekin city water system. More than 80 seal pots have been installed to prevent pump failure while reducing well water use by 70,000 gallons per day.

Aventine is also building a new truck and rail dump, which will allow the Pekin complex to unload 60,000 bushels of corn per hour or unload 110 BNSF shuttle trains in less than 15 hours. A new CompuWeigh system is being installed across the 200-acre complex that will enable seamless electronic metering of all ethanol and specialty liquids plus electronic weighing of all inbound grain and outbound grain products. The system will directly interface with Aventine's accounting systems.

“The investments we have made in our Pekin plant will give us the competitive advantage to continue to provide clean, renewable energy for years to come,” said John Valenti, Aventine’s vice president of operations. “It’s a significant improvement to one of the most robust and diverse bio-refineries in the industry.”

Aventine has also invested more than $2 million in the Fagen dry mill in Pekin, including replacing conveyors, economizers, dryers, rebuilding centrifuges, thermal oxidizer and agitation motors.

Buyers Guide

Doyle Equipment Manufacturing Co.
Doyle Equipment Manufacturing prides themselves as being “The King of the Rotary’s” with their Direct Drive Rotary Blend Systems. With numerous setup possibilities and sizes, ranging from a  more...
A.J. Sackett Sons & Company
Sackett Blend Towers feature the H.I.M, High Intensity Mixer, the next generation of blending and coating technology which supports Precision Fertilizer Blending®. Its unique design allows  more...
R&R Manufacturing Inc.
The R&R Minuteman Blend System is the original proven performer. Fast, precise blending with a compact foot print. Significantly lower horsepower requirement. Low inload height with large  more...
Junge Control Inc.
Junge Control Inc. creates state-of-the-art product blending and measuring solutions that allow you to totally maximize operating efficiency with amazing accuracy and repeatability, superior  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The flagship blending system for the Layco product line is the fully automated Layco DW System™. The advanced technology of the Layco DW (Declining Weight) system results in a blending  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The LAYCOTE™ Automated Coating System provides a new level of coating accuracy for a stand-alone coating system or for coating (impregnating) in an automated blending system. The unique  more...
John Deere
The DN345 Drawn Dry Spreader can carry more than 12 tons of fertilizer and 17.5 tons of lime. Designed to operate at field speeds up to 20 MPH with full loads and the G4 spreader uniformly  more...
Force Unlimited
The Pro-Force is a multi-purpose spreader with a wider apron and steeper sides. Our Pro-Force has the most aggressive 30” spinner on the market, and is capable of spreading higher rates of  more...
BBI Spreaders
MagnaSpread 2 & MagnaSpread 3 — With BBI’s patented multi-bin technology, these spreaders operate multiple hoppers guided by independent, variable-rate technology. These models are built on  more...

Comments (0) Leave a comment 

e-Mail (required)


characters left


Meridian’s conveyors deliver seed with unmatched versatility. Meridian’s transport conveyors are manufactured with heavy-duty, fully enclosed construction. Meridian’s cross cleated ... Read More

View all Products in this segment

View All Buyers Guides

Feedback Form
Feedback Form