Investigation of solar thermal energy alternatives and their applications to water heating and air cooling in the meat processing industry

Muller, Zach Anthony (2010) Investigation of solar thermal energy alternatives and their applications to water heating and air cooling in the meat processing industry. [USQ Project]


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[Abstract]: This research project sought to provide insight into the possible applications of solar thermal energy within the meat processing industry.

This project is carried out in conjunction with Churchill Abattoir; with the view to develop a solar thermal alternative for producing heated water to cater in part for the needs of their operation whilst simultaneously providing refrigeration. In terms of an industry comparison, Churchill Abattoir is ranked approximately 25-30th of 180 abattoirs nationwide and processes (i.e. slaughter, bone and butcher) around 2500 cattle per week.

The meat processing industry has a high demand for heated water. Its uses vary from hand washing and laundry (congruent 43 degrees C) to sterilisation of equipment such as saws, meat hooks knives etc (>83 degrees C). It also has high energy needs for refrigeration.

A solar thermal system that could reduce energy costs in these areas would not only benefit Churchill Abattoir but may see further application within industry.

Project aims include
- Research current alternatives in solar thermal systems.
- Establish design parameters.
- Produce a conceptual solar thermal system.
- Investigate the potential of such a system to cooling processes.

The project began by researching the existing alternatives for system components such as energy collectors, solar tracking, chillers and heaters. Once the component variables and design parameters for a conceptual system had been established an initial design was proposed and analysed to determine its capabilities. As a result of the analysis components and sizes were selected for a real system that could be implemented at the abattoir.

This project seeks ultimately to improve abattoir operations by reducing non-renewable energy use through the development of a solar thermal system. Its outcomes have the potential to benefit the wider industry.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering (Up to 30 Jun 2013)
Supervisors: Goh, Steven
Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2011 01:05
Last Modified: 04 Jul 2017 00:09
Uncontrolled Keywords: solar thermal; thermal efficiency; economics of solar energy; abattoir operations; water consumption; abattoir refrigeration; Churchill; Queensland
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0913 Mechanical Engineering > 091305 Energy Generation, Conversion and Storage Engineering
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4017 Mechanical engineering > 401703 Energy generation, conversion and storage (excl. chemical and electrical)

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