Techno-Economic Modeling of Soybean Oil Extraction with Hexane from 1980 to 2014

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Cheng, Ming-Hsun
Rosentrater, Kurt
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Rosentrater, Kurt
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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Since 1905, the Department of Agricultural Engineering, now the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE), has been a leader in providing engineering solutions to agricultural problems in the United States and the world. The department’s original mission was to mechanize agriculture. That mission has evolved to encompass a global view of the entire food production system–the wise management of natural resources in the production, processing, storage, handling, and use of food fiber and other biological products.

In 1905 Agricultural Engineering was recognized as a subdivision of the Department of Agronomy, and in 1907 it was recognized as a unique department. It was renamed the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering in 1990. The department merged with the Department of Industrial Education and Technology in 2004.

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  • Department of Agricultural Engineering (1907–1990)

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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

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.


This proceeding is from 2015 ASABE Annual International Meeting, Paper No. 152188594, pages 1-16 (doi: 10.13031/aim.20152188594). St. Joseph, Mich.: ASABE. Posted with permission.

Thu Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2015