14 May 2015 by Michael Holder

Ferrybridge Multifuel plant begins burning waste

The £300 million Ferrybridge Multifuel 1 energy from waste project currently undergoing commissioning in West Yorkshire has started burning solid fuel for the first time in two of its boiler lines, it was announced yesterday (May13).

Aerial image of the Ferrybridge Multifuel 1 facility - March 2015

Aerial image of the Ferrybridge Multifuel 1 facility – March 2015

According to Wheelabrator – which is developing the plant as part of joint venture Multifuel Energy Limited (MEL) alongside energy and gas supplier SSE plc – the boiler lines at the plant have now undergone their ‘first fire’ and construction work has nearly been completed.

The consortium said it is now deep into the commissioning phase to ensure all components and operating functions are tested and safety processes in place, before the facility becomes fully commercially operational before the end of 2015.

The facility will have the capacity to process around 570,000 tonnes of waste per year and received its first delivery of refuse derived fuel in March from Milton Keynes-based waste management firm Shanks (see letsrecycle.com story).

Shanks is to deliver 200,000 tonnes of RDF to the facility from its mechanical biological treatment (MBT) plants at Rotherham, Cumbria and Wakefield.

The Ferrybridge Multifuel 1 is being constructed on land next to the existing Ferrybridge ‘C’ coal fired power station near Knottingley and once operational will be able to produce enough electricity to power around 160,000 homes.

Nicholas Vigors of Hitachi Zosen Inova (HZI) – the main contractor for the construction of the plant – said: “The first fire marks a major milestone and is a culmination of the hard work of everybody who has been involved in the project to date. We still have a lot of work to do in order to finish the commissioning process and bring the plant into full commercial operation, but to have completed the first fires on lines one and two  is a significant achievement which should be celebrated.”

FM1, FM2 in the context of the exisiting C plant at Ferrybridge

FM1, FM2 in the context of the exisiting C plant at Ferrybridge

Tom Maillet, director of engineering and operations for MEL, said: “All of the construction, commissioning and operations teams are delighted to have reached this key stage in the commissioning activities and we look forward to the plant being handed over to MEL later in the year.”

MEL has also applied to build and operate a second Multifuel power station at the Ferrybridge site (known as FM2). If planning permission is granted to FM2, both plants will be capable of treating over one million tonnes of solid and waste derived fuels each year.

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