Stainless steel refinery the first of its kind

Australia’s first grain-to-ethanol refinery has begun production in Queensland, with an expected output of more than 80 million litres a year.

Australia’s first grain-to-ethanol refinery has begun production in Queensland, with an expected output of more than 80 million litres a year.

Seven pressure vessels and five columns were fabricated by D&R Stainless from 30 tonnes of grade 304 stainless steel supplied by Sandvik.

The column sizes range from an acid reduction column 750mm in diameter and 14.2 metres long to a beer column 1900mm in diameter and 24 metres long.

The columns were fabricated to tight tolerances set by process design engineers Detla T Technology, in the United States.

Chief Executive Officer of Dalby Bio-Refinery Limited, Kevin Endres, has worked with Delta T technnology in the US. Endres said stainless was the obvious choice for its durability.

A project of this size requires a low maintenance and reliable material. All design and manufacturing was carried out by D&R Stainless to ASME VIII complying with AS1210.

D&R also fabricated 6000 metres of grade 304 piping in sizes from 20NB to 500NB requiring over 6100 elbows, flanges and fittings from ASSDA member Stainless Pipe & Fittings Australia. All piping was x-ray quality and met ASME B31.3.

Endres said the refinery could eventually expand to output over 200 million litres of ethanol per year.