Australian Company Ordered Robotic Waste Sorting System

Finnish-based ZenRobotics Ltd. will deliver a robotic waste sorting system to Sunshine Groupe in Melbourne, Australia. The three-armed ZenRobotics Recycler unit (ZRR3) will be the first of its kind in Australia and it is expected to be fully operational in spring 2017, the provider emphasized.

Sunshine Groupe, founded in 1926, is a family-owned business with recycling experience in five generations. With recent investments Sunshine Groupe aims to position itself as one of Melbourne’s primary waste processors. Through a partnership with Sustainability Victoria, the company installed a material recovery facility (MRF) at their Brooklyn landfill and recovery site which allows it to better identify resources from the 120,000 tons per annum waste stream to be repurposed and reused for other materials. A mixture of waste materials will be dropped off at the primary transfer station where it will then be processed to sort the materials into specific fractions.

After the waste has been sorted through these processes, the materials will be transferred to the state-of-the-art robotic material sorting plant. Here, the ZRR3 – a tri-station robotic gantry arm plant manufactured by ZenRobotics and supplied by the provider’s dealer Robots in Waste – will use its sensors and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to sort material types from the waste stream. “The ZRR3 can sort around 6,000 objects from the belt per hour, equating to a plant total of approximately 7 to 8 tons per hour”, Sunshine Groupe estimates. The combination of the MRF and the robotics material sorting plant is expected to recover approximately 50 percent of the entire waste stream – around 60,000 tons per annum. Over the first year, recovery rates are expected to increase between 70 and 80 percent.

Photo: ZenRobotics

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