An assesment of energy use parameters in the Kenya Sugar Industry: the case of Nzoia Sugar Factory
Mukhongo, Harness Sakwa
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Kenya depends on hydro-power which has little potential for expansion and has become unreliable due to droughts. This together with the rising costs of energy and the growing intent for renewable energy sources for environmental reasons makes cogeneration from bagasse for supply to the national grid attractive by the day. For the Kenyan sugar industry to attract investment in cogeneration knowledge of the current energy performance at the factories is critical. With this information the potential for the cogeneration programs can readily be demonstrated. In this study the energy intensity, the parameters influencing energy performance, and measures to improve energy performance at Nzoia sugar factory were examined to create baseline data on energy performance. In the course of the study energy and production data was extracted from factory records and complemented by measurements to get real-time data. In-depth interviews and discussions with factory management and technical staff were contacted to get understanding of the operations, processes and opportunities for improvement. The following were outcomes of this study on Nzoia sugar factory: specific steam consumption 675 kg steam/to: electrical energy consumption 28 kilowatt hour per tonne of cane (kWh/tc); electrical energy production 24kWh/tc; average factory capacity utilization 83.2%; letdown steam per cent high pressure steam 8.4%; softened water per cent of boiler feed water 34.73%; bagasse 'per cent cane 37.87%; bagasse moisture content 50.5%; dry bagasse gross calorific value 21MJ/kg; and the boiler efficiency 54.4%. The average milling rate for the period under review was 2496tonnes of cane per day.