Before continuing with my studies, and obtaining a Ph.D in the are of computer vision, I worked for 5 years as an automation engineer, designing, installing and modernizing automation systems. From this point of view this project was getting back to the roots. My father's company refurbished and modified a second hand MVR (mechanical vapor re-compression) evaporator for a Lithuanian dairy. My task was to design the automation system.

Project Details

My Role

My role was to design the complete automation system, including choosing automation components, making a complete set of electrical drawings, programming both the PLC and the HMI systems, and starting up the plant. Details of the control system are as follows:

  • Siemens S7 CPU 315-2 PN/DP PLC
  • WinCC v7.3 (HMI)
  • 100 digital inputs
  • 84 digital outputs
  • 32 analog input
  • 18 analog outputs


Above image shows one of the HMI screens for controlling the evaporator. The system consists of a recipe manager that allows generation of recipes for different products being run on the evaporator.

Evaporator Details

Evaporator details, calculated for whey permeate, are as follows:

  • Type of evaporator: multiple effect, MVR
  • INPUT: 13000kg/h at 18% (whey permeate)
  • OUTPUT: 5850kg/h at 40%

Multiple effect evaporator

Jarno Ralli
Author: Jarno Ralli
Jarno Ralli is a computer vision scientist and a programmer.

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