Brunner Energie

Pinch Analysis

Pinch analysis is the prevalent instrument of process integration. It enables and fosters a systematic and holistic optimisation of thermal energy systems – from single processes to the energy supply system. Typically, economically feasible saving potentials of 10-40 % can be identified, referring to primary energy.

Characteristic workflow of a pinch analysis

  • Data gathering of processes and building infrastructure (temperatures, cp-values, massflows)
  • Analysis and assessment of the current energetic state, incl. Sankey diagram
  • Optimisation of operation conditions
  • Elaboration of the pinch analysis
  • Adaptation of the energy supply system to the actual demand (regulation, pressure, temperature)
  • Development of a heat exchanger network for maximal energy recovery
  • Elaboration of a list of measures incl. saving potential, investment costs and payback
  • Derivation of an implementation roadmap incl. prioritisation

Under which circumstances is a pinch analysis especially recommended?

  • Main thermal energy demand lies mainly within the processes and not only in the building infrastructure
  • Energy costs for thermal energy lie ideally at 200’000-300’000 CHF or more
  • Different heating and cooling demands/waste heat sources are available

Florian Brunner is an expert in the field of pinch analysis and has been supporting the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Art for the last 7 years in the development of the software PinCH. The software is developed on behalf of the Swiss Federal Office of Energy SFOE and the current version PinCH 2.0 enables the user-friendly performance of pinch analyses for continuous and batch processes. A free test license is available here. Currently in development is PinCH 3.0 which can be used additionally to identify and dimension (temperature, volume) energy storages.