Paper Mills Generate Their Own Solid Recovered Fuel

Two Untha XR waste shredders are now in operation for VPK Packaging Group in continental Europe, shredding pulper ropes (ragger wire) as part of a closed loop paper production process.

Manufacturing 900,000 tons of paper per year from 100 percent recycled materials, VPK’s mill in Dendermonde (Belgium) and Blue Paper Mill in Strasbourg (France) generate a waste by-product including complex pulper ropes. A pulper rope – or ragger wire – is used for collecting and removing impurities such as plastic sheets, films, tapes and wires from the pulp. This multifaceted 1:3 metal and plastic material was previously treated off-site by a third party. However, the new shredding investment means that both plants can now process the waste themselves to manufacture an alternative fuel for their own energy generation.

At Dendermonde, untreated pulper rope waste is being fed into an Untha XR3000C shredder via a ceiling-mounted claw grab at a throughput rate of five tons per hour. A screen ensures homogenous particle sizing before the fraction drops onto a horizontal discharge conveyor. The shredded material then passes up an elevated conveyor to an electro-magnetic FE-separator, where metals are extracted for onward sale and recycling. The finished product is an SRF specification fuel that VPK uses in its own on-site Waste-to-Energy facility.

The Solid Recovered Fuel travels via a final horizontal conveyor into a bunker with walking floor to feed the plant. A level detector senses when the vessel is filled by 70 percent and the conveyor auto-reverses so that excess material can instead drop into a storage bay.

As a turnkey package, the solution – including control cabinet room, steel support, service platforms, stairways and cranage sourcing – was supplied by Untha. The tender stated a system capable of handling 5,800 tons per annum (only during daytime working hours), but the VPK team is already confident that this target will be surpassed, the Austrian shredding technology company reported.

Untha’s machine delivery in the Blue Paper Mill – which is co-owned with German-based Klingele Papierwerke – is virtually identical, apart from the fact that it will be handling approximately 4,500 tons of material per year.

Photo: Untha

GR 2/2018