IDM ¦ Technology/IT
ensures process stability
DMK Group plant in Zeven introduces "GEA OptiPartner"
as the world's first milk drying plant
Zeven is DMK’s largest industrial milk processing plant
20 · 3-4 2019 ¦ international-dairy.com
The DMK plant in Zeven, one of the largest milk dryers
in Germany, has been able to solve a series of serious
problems through a new, holistic and, above all, continuous
process optimization. The solution partner was GEA
who realized the world's first "GEA OptiPartner" solution
in Zeven. Read the site report by IDM International Dairy Magazine.
In 2017, drying repeatedly stopped at the DMK plant in Zeven. Affected
was the relatively new Tower 2 with an output of 8 t powder/h.
During summer up to three times per week blockages occurred in the
area of the dryer outlet/fluid bed and/or the cyclone filters, whereby
the entire process had to be interrupted for several hours at a time in
order to be able to manually remove powder deposits. Plant Manager
Andreas Stoeck explains: "Given the daily throughput of up to two
million liters of milk in our drying, one can imagine the consequences
of a prolonged disruption not only for our plant, but for the entire
DMK organisation. In view of the accumulation of incidents, action
was the top priority, and we had to make the processes stable."
Software alone is not enough
Using software solutions for process optimisation is a known approach
in the dairy industry. But their performance in reaching the
final objectives of the plant management are very varying. Dr. Hassan
Yazdi, who works for GEA as Senior Digital Services Product
Manager explains the problem in his view: "When it comes to automation
software, regardless of type or supplier, it does not matter
that the software is physically in operation, if it is not constantly
adapted to the significant changes in the process, e.g. raw material
quality, weather, instrumentation, recipe configurations etc. Otherwise
you will end-up with a system that seems to be on-line,
but its performance is degraded since commissioning and far from
the potentials. Only those with in-depth process know-how and
system insight who work continuously to set optimal conditions
can ensure a good process over the long term; software alone is
not enough for that. This is why we introduced GEA OptiPartner
to the dairy market"