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Thermal energy demand ​in large industrial applications can be very high and costly. In order to reduce cost and increase thermal efficiency, Pinch Analysis is often used as an optimisation tool. The main idea behind this is to optimise and reduce "investment cost" by the leverage of heat available through different streams, which assists in the reduction of the number of heat exchangers and piping in systems.  Performing pinch analysis will help engineers and designers in:

  • determining optimal energy balance between various hot and cold process streams

  • minimising capital and operational cost(s)

  • determining the minimum external energy required for operation

  • optimal system design and layout

  • energy saving and hence emissions reduction

  • strategic planning

  • integration of a system with a 'boiler', 'heat pump' or any other device.

With pinch analysis, it is possible to map the flow of various streams (and heat transfers between them) in a so-called Heat Exchanger Network (HEN). An example is shown on the figure on the right.  HEN helps to:

  • define the number of heat exchangers required

  • determine the type of heat exchanger to be used: plate, shell and tube, recuperative

  • determine the transfer of heat between which two streams.


Another advantage of pinch analysis is that one can combine all the heat loads from existing streams over any given temperature range in order to create a composite curve for either hot or cold streams. This is a method used to verify the total energy available to be transferred between streams, the pinch temperature, and the cold/hot duty (external load) required for a system, an example of which is shown on the right.

EH Group can assist you in designing and implementing a Pinch Analysis for your projects – contact us (Here).

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