February 2002

In 1942, during the Second World War, when faced with threats of German bombing and invasion, the Russians decided to relocate many of their essential industries to Siberia, on the eastern side of the Ural Mountains range. Among the plants relocated were several wood-hydrolysis plants making ethanol.

Whilst a similar plant built about the same time in Springfield, Oregon, in the U.S., was abandoned in 1945, at the end of the war, as being uneconomical, many of the Russian plants not only continued in operation, but were expanded.

The consultancy assignment in 1997 was to examine the Tavda plant, with a view to increasing its overall efficiency, and a description of the operating process was prepared to serve as the basis for recommendations for improvements.

Permission was given to publish the process description in English, as the plant details have already been published in Russian in various, somewhat-obscure scientific journals.

Dr. John Murtagh is an independent alcohol-production consultant, based in Virginia, U.S.A.

The consultancy study referred to above is confidential, and is not available for distribution.

Description of Operating Process


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