La Molisana: pasta on the world’s tables is even greener thanks to AB’s cogeneration

AB once again proves to be a full partner in consulting, design, creation, installation and assistance with a dedicated service, helping to optimize the energy efficiency of pasta factories and […]

AB once again proves to be a full partner in consulting, design, creation, installation and assistance with a dedicated service, helping to optimize the energy efficiency of pasta factories and enhancing the technological potentialities of cogeneration plants fueled by natural gas. The choice of the prestigious company La Molisana, based in Campobasso, known for the attention reserved to the quality of the product and the strong sense of respect for its own territory, comes from the awareness of how AB cogeneration plants are able to combine energy costs optimization with a concrete eco-environmental commitment.


Orzinuovi, October 29th, 2015. At the La Molisana factory in Contrada Colle delle Api (Campobasso, Italy), AB technicians have installed a highly efficient cogeneration system, which was developed to meet the specific needs of the factory and to be easily integrated with their existing machinery.

La Molisana has been synonymous with quality since 1912: their artisanal pasta mill is a symbol of Mediterranean flavours. The choice to use cogeneration aligns perfectly with this philosophy, which aims to ensure the excellence of the products while also keeping a close eye on the supply chain.


The ECOMAX® 20HE cogeneration system is a modular, gas-powered container solution which provides 2,002 kWe at full capacity and recovers energy from the engine block using a plate heat exchanger to produce hot water for 856 kWt.

The exhaust gases are sent to an exchanger (120 kWt) where the hot water from the engine circuit is further heated. The hot water produced this way is used by an absorption chiller with nominal refrigerating capacity equal to 696 kWf, or alternatively by the hot water utilities in the factory.

The electricity is entirely self-consumed by the factory, with generator control set to zero exchange mode with the grid to prevent power from being transferred to the grid at night when the pasta factory is not fully operational. The thermal energy is also completely self-consumed by the pasta factory: the overheated water is used in the pasta production process, while the hot water is used for the central heating during winter months. The technological choices made have allowed high efficiency to be reached in all aspects of operation, notably reducing the emission of CO2 into the environment with a saving of many tonnes on emissions into the atmosphere.


Features of the CHP plant

LCV of natural gas kWh/Nmc 9,5
Natural gas consumption Nmc/h 478
Introduced power kW 4.544
Mechanical power supplied kWe 2.058
Electrical power supplied kWe 2.002
Recoverable thermal power kWt 1.762
Electrical efficiency % 44,1
Thermal efficiency % 38,8
Overall efficiency % 82,9

The unit will run for about 8,760 hrs/year.



Founded in Orzinuovi in 1981 by Angelo Baronchelli, AB ( operates in the fields of cogeneration and the promotion of renewable energy sources. AB is the global leader in cogeneration thanks to its external modular plants ranging from 100 to 10,000 kWe. Over 1.000 installations have been built to date, for a total nominal electric power exceeding 1,300 MW. In recent years, AB Group’s production capacity has quadrupled and the number of its employees increased to over 600. AB now has subsidiaries Poland, Serbia, Croatia, as well as in Spain, Romania, Czech Republic, Austria, Brazil, The Netherlands, Germany, UK, Canada, USA, Israel, and recently also in Russia, Turkey and Mexico.


La Molisana was founded in 1912 as a craft shop in Campobasso. Acquired in 2011 by the Gruppo Ferro, millers for over a century, it now manages the entire chain of pasta, from corn to the table, and focuses on three pillars: the raw materials, the processing method and the innovation of packaging, product and technology. Investments of more than 15 million Euros have allowed to enhance the industrial asset with a radical renewal of the most crucial divisions. Today La Molisana has nine production lines with a daily capacity of 470 tons of pasta, 16 packaging lines offering all types of packaging and an advanced logistics platform as a result of the construction of new automated warehouses. The products are distributed in the main national retailers and in over 50 foreign countries. La Molisana offers about 100 kinds of bronze-extruded pasta and an internal production of egg pasta that is the flagship of the company.

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