News in brief (28/05/2019)

With news on: Andusia and Powerday strike SRF deal; Researchers examine ash-to-concrete quality; Luxus to carry out recycled plastic ‘odour’ research; New Suffolk HWRC contract commences


Andusia and Powerday strike SRF deal

Recovered fuels exporter Andusia has signed a supply contract with Powerday to export 10,000 tonnes a year of solid recovered fuel (SRF) to be used at a cement plant in the Mediterranean.

The facility in West London recently underwent a £2 million upgrade

Powerday, which processes construction, demolition, municipal and commercial waste, recently completed a £2 million upgrade to its materials recycling facility (MRF) in Willesden last summer to enable it to produce SRF from the site.

Solid Recovered Fuel, or SRF, is an alternative to RDF, requiring additional processing and consisting of smaller fractions of material, which gives it a higher energy content. The higher calorific value means it is suitable for use in cement kiln facilities, where it can replace fuels such as petcoke or coal.

Jim Craig, managing director at Powerday, commented: “We are pleased to have established this partnership with Andusia which showcases our recycling capabilities especially as SRF is highly sustainable and cost effective.”

Stewart Brackenbury, director and founder of Andusia, said: “We are very excited to be joining forces with Powerday. We are always looking for like-minded companies with a passion for waste recovery – and that is exactly what we have found.”


Researchers examine ash-to-concrete quality

Researchers at the University of Strathclyde have carried out research into using ash from energy from waste plants to create ‘high quality’ concrete pellets for use in the construction industry.

The project commissioned by waste management company Enva, formerly William Tracey Group, saw heat treatment methods used to diminish contaminants from the ash to produce the pellets.

Experts carried out furnace trials to determine the most suitable time and temperature required to produce a concrete product made from waste ash, cement and water

Carried out by the University of Strathclyde’s Advanced Forming Research Centre (AFRCO) the project was also funded by the Construction Scotland Innovation Centre.

This came after Enva, which collects ash from waste and biomass plants, investigated the possibility of turning the waste stream into a construction product with both commercial and quality benefits.

Experts carried out various furnace trials to determine the most suitable time and temperature required to produce a reliable concrete product made from waste ash, cement and water. The mix was then turned into pellets by the team. The research will now be extended to see if the process can be commercialised.

Scott Newport, Technical Manager at Enva, said: “The research carried out by the AFRC helped us understand more about the behaviour and performance of the ash, allowing us to take our first steps in exploring how we can best utilise this product, which was previously scrapped as waste.

“It’s an exciting time within the industry to create circular initiatives that will open up various opportunities from revenue and job creation, and we’re thrilled that we’re closer to achieving this.”


Luxus to carry out recycled plastic ‘odour’ research

Plastics compounder Luxus has, as part of a consortium, won an £840,462 Innovate UK grant to develop a process to remove retained odour from post-consumer recycled plastics.

The aim of the 30-month research and development project, known as ‘Odour Control’, is to employ process technologies to deliver high value ‘second life’ applications for odour contaminated plastics, that would otherwise only be adopted for limited low value markets.

Chris Kerridge, project manager, Luxus

Luxus will lead the project in collaboration with its partners the University of Lincoln to provide a ‘test house’ to identify and quantify odour species, Matrix Moulding Systems will help develop the processing system design and injection moulding company, One 51 will produce the finished parts.

Recycled plastics have a ‘scent memory’ from contact with heavily perfumed detergents or food that creates quality issues inhibiting further use, according to Luxus. Although some progress has been made to recycle easier post-production waste streams, the recycling of post-consumer polypropylene (PP) and polyethylene (PE) still presents a major challenge, the company says.

Luxus project manager, Chris Kerridge, commented: “We are pleased that Innovate UK has recognised the importance of developing a process that will allow for the cost efficient reprocessing of polymer that was previously uneconomic to recover due to retained odour.”


New Suffolk HWRC contract commences

Suffolk county council and FCC Environment began a new eight-year contract for the management of 11 household waste recycling centres (HWRCs) this month (16 May).

The contract features a greater emphasis on reuse, the use of enhanced technology to speed up throughput and tackle trade waste ‘abuse’ as well as ongoing site improvements.

FCC will manage the HWRC sites on behalf of Suffolk for eight years

“This is a high-profile service with over 1.5 million users each year across the 11 sites” said Paul West, Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet Member for Waste. “We are delighted to once again be working with FCC Environment, who have demonstrated they have the experience and ambition to deliver against our targets and work in partnership with us to provide an excellent service for residents throughout the county.”

FCC Environment regional director, Steve Longdon, said “FCC Environment manages Recycling Centres up and down the country and as such as are a safe pair of hands, so we are delighted to be continuing this role with Suffolk County Council and we are excited to be bringing through a range of improvements and innovations to ensure we meet resident expectations and increase recycling.”

Through the contract, FCC Environment aims to increase the number of items that are re-used.  Currently, items donated on-site are sent to the Re-use shop at Foxhall Recycling Centre and a second re-use shop is due to open at the new Bury site later in the year.

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