Combination drying, based on computer simulation, was evaluated as an alternative drying technique to traditional high-temperature drying and dryeration. Simulation models of high-temperature crossflow drying and in-bin drying and conditioning were used to evaluate the performance of conventional crossflow drying and full-heat crossflow drying followed by dryeration or natural-air drying for Indianapolis, Indiana, and Des Moines, Iowa. Energy costs from propane, electricity, moisture shrink below the market moisture content, and dry matter loss were estimated to find the total average drying cost over 29 years. Dryeration and combination drying reduced the total drying cost by approximately 10% compared to conventional drying and cooling within the dryer at current economic conditions. The greatest benefit was an increase of 72 and 159% in drying capacity when dryeration and combination drying were used instead of conventional drying and cooling within the dryer, respectively. However, the economic return of combination drying could be improved by the development of natural-air drying techniques or controllers that would limit the predicted moisture shrink loss.

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Published in Transactions of the ASAE, v. 43, issue 3, p. 691-699.

© 2000 American Society of Agricultural Engineers

The copyright holder has granted the permission for posting the article here.

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The financial support of Hoosier Energy (Bloomington, Indiana) and Wabash Power (Indianapolis, Indiana) is acknowledged.