Techno-Economic Modeling of Soybean Oil Extraction with Hexane from 1980 to 2014
Soybean is one of the main oil crop resources in the United States. It can be used as edible oil or biodiesel production. Additionally, the co-products (soybean meal, soybean hulls and gums) are able to be utilized in animal feeds and food additives. Hexane extraction is the most common approach in oil industry and has higher efficiency, above 90%, more than conventional mechanical expelling process. The advantages of hexane extraction are to increase the yield of oil products and short processing time. However, chemicals remaining, recycling and disposal are still a main concern in the industry. In this work, techno-economic analysis (TEA) was applied to evaluate the cost and profits of soybean oil extraction with hexane every 10 years from 1980 to 2014. For increasing the profits of this process, the analysis considered main product, soybean oil, and all co-products as well. The analysis based on soybean oil production of 40 million kg per year. The total profit is highly dependent on the material cost, which has the majority about 60%. Hence, with the increase in prices of materials, the revenues of the hexane process has also been increased. That leads to earning profits from the process.