10 July 2017 by Steve Eminton

Testing starts at Renewi’s Sinfin MBT/gasification plant

Testing of equipment and processes at Renewi’s Sinfin site in Derby is getting underway, the contractor announced today (10 July).

The development, which includes a mechanical biological treatment facility, a recycling plant and an energy from waste process in the form of a gasification system, is by Resource Recovery Solutions (RRS), now a joint venture between Renewi and Interserve Group plc. The contract award, in 2010, was originally in the name of Shanks, with Shanks now part of Renewi.

In a statement the joint venture said the “the testing period makes sure that the equipment is working properly – a key stage in the development of a waste treatment facility.”

Sinfin Lane Renewi

Artists impression of the Sinfin Lane project


The Waste Treatment Centre is the flagship part of a long-term waste contract with Derbyshire County Council and Derby City Council. “It has been built to process waste from Derby and Derbyshire that residents do not or cannot recycle,” the statement added.

The new facility aims to divert up to 98% of household residual waste from landfill, while also generating enough green electricity to power approximately 14,000 homes. Income from generating electricity to the national grid will offset the cost of the waste treatment to the Councils

James Priestley, managing director of Renewi’s municipal division, said: “We are delighted to be accepting first waste at our Waste Treatment Centre in Derby, a significant milestone in this project. This flagship facility will not only divert 98% of waste from landfill, but it will also generate green electricity from the parts of waste which cannot be recycled. We are looking forward to completing the commissioning of our facility and to providing first class waste services for the people of Derby and Derbyshire.”

Interserve said it hopes to “substantially complete the building and testing of the centre during 2017 with the facility expected to be fully operational in spring 2018”.

Testing specifications

Among the specifications for the testing procedure are that the average waste throughput for each ACT line must be >90% of the designed maximum feed rate of 6te/hr (ie, 5.4te/hr) or if CV> 11. 7MJ/kg such lower feed rate (x90%) as interpolated from the firing diagram.

And, the process must run for a continuous period of 8 hours during the 14 Day Period and each line must operate simultaneously and to the satisfaction of the IC (independent certifier) at 6 t/hr.

Throughput to be measured via load cells on the grab cranes feeding the ACT. The load cells will be calibrated before and after the test period (using calibration weights that can be brought into the ACT Hall by lorry) to ensure accuracy of measurement.

MBT testing

Pre-processing and MBT equipment will have to demonstrate performance in excess of the following levels:

  • Overband magnets – aggregate of 79.2% of ferrous material (being objects with >60% ferrous content by weight) removed by weight from the aggregate ferrous metal content of input waste presented to overband magnets.
  • Eddy current separators – aggregate 73.8% of non ferrous metal removed by weight from the aggregate non ferrous metal content of input waste presented to eddy current separators.
  • Near Infra Reds – aggregate of 72% of targeted dense plastics material (being objects with >60% targeted dense plastics content by weight, and >50mm in two dimensions) removed by weight from the aggregate targeted dense plastics content of input waste presented to NIRs (excluding non-detectable black coloured materials).


And, specifications also have to be met for the moisture of material leaving the biodrying hall which “shall be no greater than 75% of the moisture content of material enterinq the biodrying hall, to be demonstrated by comparison of the average moisture content of three input and three output samples, (some of which may be taken prior to the 14 Day Period), such sampling being repeated as necessary on any failure of the test.”

Contract documents give an example of the test result calculation: “the average moisture content of three 1 kg samples of input material is 300g and the same for three corresponding lkg output material samples 14 days later is 225g, then the moisture content of the output material is 75% (225/300) of the input material and passes this test.”

Availability of pre-processing and MBT equipment is to be 95% for MBT based on a 24/7 operation during the test period.


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