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Geared motors help olive oil machinery increase reliability and efficiency

13 June 2016

Extracting pure oil from olives is a complex and energy intensive process that entails operations such as cleaning, mixing the paste and separating the solids from the liquids.>

Watt drive helical bevel geared motor

Pieralisi, the only company to manufacture industrial machinery for every step of this process, has turned to WEG geared motors to reduce installation time and increase energy efficiency, durability and productivity. 

Established in 1988 in Monsano, Italy, Pieralisi produces as many as 900 complete systems for the whole olive oil production process per year and is one of the leading producers of this type of machinery not only in Italy and Spain but also worldwide. At one of its major plants, in Zaragoza, Spain, the company recently sought WEG’s support to address some of the issues associated with the machinery drive chain.

After being thoroughly cleaned and crushed, olives undergo a process called kneading: where they are heated and turned into a homogenous mass in preparation for the centrifugation and separation processes. The huge machines designed by Pieralisi to drive this important stage of the production process (5m long and 1,7m high and with a basin capacity of 6m3) presented a novel set of challenges.

The power transmission components that drive the blender consisted of several elements, including an external gear chain. This system required a time-consuming installation process and was also exposed to maintenance issues such as broken or disconnected chains

To address such challenges, WEG specified the K80 helical bevel geared motor manufactured by its subsidiary – gear technology specialist Watt Drive. Designed to attach directly to the axe of the machine sideways, the motor provides an easy to mount machine interface enabling Pieralisi’s engineers to reduce installation time.

An integrated and contained system with no additional external moving elements, the K80 also eliminates the risk of elements breaking or disconnecting, reducing maintenance costs. 

Fewer moving parts also mean reduced friction, which translates into lower power and heat dissipation and thus more energy efficiency (IE3 standards). Pieralisi estimates that each motor enables the end user to achieve savings of up to 2kWh in electricity consumption. Considering that, depending on the model, the kneading machines will be driven by two to three WEG geared motors K80; they will have a significant impact on energy efficiency in olive oil production plants. 

Alejandro Gracia, technical director of Pieralisi plant in Zaragoza said olive oil producers are becoming more aware of the Total Cost of Ownership (TOC) of essential machinery such as kneading machines and demand more energy efficient and reliable technology. WEG have enabled the company to provide customers with machines that are more energy efficient, reliable and durable, helping Pieralisi become competitive on the market.

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