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Roal: Cooling an enzyme plant with outdoor air

Roal is a biotechnology company that takes full advantage of Finland’s climate to save energy in its manufacture of industrial enzymes.

The company’s production plant in Nurmijärvi, southern Finland, uses free cooling, a process that uses low external air temperatures in providing the refrigeration needed during production. This allows for a significant reduction in the use of compressors for refrigeration, which consume large amounts of electricity.

Free cooling has a considerable impact on the factory’s electric bill and its emission levels, as it cuts electricity consumption by around one-third.

Roal is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of enzymes for many fields, including the food, agricultural feed and clothing industries. The enzymes are manufactured from live microbes, which require optimum growth conditions and plentiful oxygen.

In addition to the electricity used for cooling and oxygen supply, energy is also consumed in generating the steam needed to maintain the aseptic production lines.

In addition to the introduction of free cooling, Roal has implemented several other improvements in energy efficiency in recent years. The cooling and heat recovery system alone involved an investment of EUR 15 million, which will in effect pay for itself through energy savings.

Text by: Matti Remes
Photo by: Roal Oy