The facility’s overall design – which includes skylights, high efficiency LEDs, and lighting controls (both occupancy sensors and daylight controls) – has been designed to comply with ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2007, resulting in a 40% reduction in annual energy consumption in the Mill and 38% in the Creamery.
In the distillery, equipment was chosen to meet or exceed the typical standard often seen in a distillery of this size. We also integrated several innovative and energy-saving features into the distillery.
The distillation process involves boiling and condensing a mixture in order to separate it. It is a highly energy-intensive process, but one where Bently Heritage has achieved large savings. We operate using a continuous-still built by Headframe Manufacturing, that preheats the feed with stillage, recoving heat and saving energy on the heating process. We split cooling duty between energy-efficient fin-fan coolers, which use ambient air temperature to disperse heat, and a chilled water system; the cooler saves us energy as opposed to a typical water-chilled system. Finally, a condensate recovery system returns steam condensate to the boiler, saving thermal energy and reducing water consumption.
Carl Batch Still
The Carl finishing still condenser is cooled with water from the fin-fan cooler, significantly reducing the energy costs over a traditional chilled-water system. As with the Headframe still, the Carl still also splits condensation duties between a fin-fan cooler and chilled water, reducing thermal energy and allowing us to reuse heat for other purposes.
The mashing process features a weak wort recovery cycle. The use of weak worts in the mashing process reduces the use of fresh water. By maintaining temperature in the already hot weak worts, heat consumption is reduced. This process also nets a higher-alcohol yield, saving even more energy.
While Heritage aims to respect old-world traditions, heating stills with direct fire isn't worth the energy cost. Instead, we use thermal oil to re-create the best traits of direct fire while also saving thermal energy. Direct fire systems tend to have about 55% thermal energy efficiency, whereas the thermal oil system has 85% efficiency.
Most distilleries use hot water for cleaning, and first and final rinses. For most distilleries, this water is turned to waste. However, we recover the final rinse for re-use on the pre-rinse, resulting in 33% energy savings. Finally, all hot water at the Creamery is pre-heated with energy recovery from the Mill building.