By Matt Hale, International Sales & Marketing Director, HRS Heat Exchangers
Irrespective of industry or sector, manufacturers and plant operators are increasingly choosing to invest in complete system solutions which can easily be integrated into existing operations, rather than sourcing components or equipment for inclusion in lines which are designed and installed in-house or by third-party contractors.
The reasons for choosing complete solutions will vary according to client, but industry observers have noticed some common trends in recent years, which we have also seen in our own experience. For example, the data collection and utilisation trends encapsulated by Industry 4.0 and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) mean that many clients are looking for machinery and systems which are connected to their data systems, something which is often outside the scope of their own in-house engineering and IT functions.
A complete HRS UHT system containing DSI and MI Series components
Complete systems, whether off-the-shelf or designed to meet client’s bespoke needs, also reflect an overall trend towards complete line integration which is increasingly seen in manufacturing environments. In 2019, just before the Covid pandemic, it was reported that 35% of food manufacturers had fully integrated processing and packaging lines1 and that the trend was not limited to larger companies. Data collection and the IIoT enable manufacturers to plan and operate more efficiently, and this trend is increasing all the time.
Against this backdrop it is natural that manufacturers are looking for ‘plug-and-play’ solutions. Rather than in-house fabrication of production lines, manufacturers want standalone systems and equipment than can easily be integrated with other components. This is an acceleration of a trend which began many years ago, but which has really come to the fore since the pandemic.
HRS has produced complete systems for the food and environmental sectors for many years and is continuing to develop new products and solutions as demand increases. Some of these implement existing technologies – such as the HRS DSI (Direct Steam Injection) Series – while others provide a pre-packaged combination of proven heat exchanger technologies, like the HRS Thermblock & Asepticblock Series of Pasteurisers/Sterilisers.
In the environmental and energy sectors HRS systems provide convenient and economical solutions for the problems faced by developers and operators of anaerobic digestion plants, including digestate concentration and/or pasteurisation and biogas dehumidification. Elsewhere HRS concentration and evaporation systems are used for manufacturing and waste management, with the ultimate waste solution being the HRS ZLD (Zero Liquid Discharge) System.
All of these HRS systems offer monitoring and telemetry systems with connectivity via ethernet or integrated 4G data SIM. This enables the systems to integrate with the rest of your business both physically and in terms of data, control and the IIoT.
Whether you are looking for a completely standalone thermal system, or equipment that can be integrated as part of a large production or processing unit, HRS has a comprehensive range of systems and heat exchangers to meet your needs.
1 2019 Trends and Advances in Food Packaging and Processing at https://www.pmmi.org/report/2019-trends-and-advances-food-packaging-and-processing