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Ingeniería e Investigación

Print version ISSN 0120-5609

Abstract

CERQUERA PENA, Néstor Enrique; RUIZ OSORIO, Yaneth Liliana  and  PASTRANA BONILLA, Eduardo. Evaluating a tobacco-curing oven using a forced-convection heat exchanger USCO - MADR. Ing. Investig. [online]. 2010, vol.30, n.1, pp.91-96. ISSN 0120-5609.

A traditional oven for curing tobacco leaves was redesigned (based on existing infrastructure); a forced-convection heat exchanger system was implemented in it which worked with coffee hulls as fuel. This oven (called a forced-convection tobacco leaf curing oven) was evaluated during the harvesting season. It was found that temperature and relative humidity inside the furnace could be controlled with this assembly during the three stages involved in curing tobacco leaves. The equipment used performed excellently when using coffee hulls as fuel, having the following approximate consumption during curing: 8.92 kilograms per hour during the yellowing stage, 17.75 kilograms per hour during the leaf drying and color fixation phase and 19.29 kilograms per hour during the stem drying stage. Comparative analysis of the oven´s operating costs along with the proposed adjustments to be made to it would allow its implementation as a promising alternative in the existing tobacco chain.

Keywords : tobacco curing; heat exchanger; coffee hull; tobacco post-harvest; Virginia tobacco.

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