Bioethanol distillation

The Bioethanol plants of Unternehmensgruppe Schmitt:
Energy efficiency has a name

The Unternehmensgruppe Schmitt offers its customers energy-saving, customised and turnkey bioethanol plants.

In addition to high-quality bioethanol, the so-called stillage is also produced as a by-product. This is removed from the sump of the distillation column and then processed into high-quality animal feed in fresh or dried stable form (DDGS).

It is also possible to use the stillage as substrate for biogas plants.


Cereal grains are ground wet, mixed with water and amylase enzymes and heated to saccharify the starch. Yeast is added to the so-called mash for alcoholic fermentation of the sugar. Ethanol is then separated from the fermented mash by distillation. The ethanol-water mixture is then further processed by dehydration to dehydrated ethanol.


• Biogas > Steam generation for the distillery, operation of a CHP
• Electricity > from own CHP for own consumption and feed-in
• Nitrogen fertilisers > Targeted fertilisation of surrounding agricultural land
• Waste heat > Heating of apparatuses in production, hall heating in winter

How ethanol is produced

Ethanol production, which is based on the use of natural raw materials, can take place in different ways. Here is an example: Cereal grains are ground wet and mixed with water. The mixed flour and water mixture is then mashed, i.e. by heating the mixture is freed from germs that can later disturb the fermentation process. By adding various enzymes and auxiliary substances, a saccharification of the starch is achieved. The so-called sweet mash is then mixed with yeast in the fermentation vat and fermented for 72 hours under exclusion of air. The ethanol is then separated from the fermented mash by distillation. Depending on the desired end product, further purification steps follow.