Solid recovered fuel production through the mechanical-biological treatment of wastes
Velis, C. A.
- Publisher: Cranfield University
This thesis is concerned with the production of solid recovered fuel (SRF) from municipal solid
waste using mechanical biological treatment (MBT) plants. It describes the first in-depth
analysis of a UK MBT plant and addresses the fundamental research question:
are MBT plants and their unit operations optimised to produce high quality
SRF in the UK?
A critical review of the process science and engineering of MBT provides timely insights into the
quality management and standardisation of SRF use in Europe. Quantitative fuel property data
for European SRFs are collated and analysed statistically in a detailed examination of the fuel
quality achievable from MBT-derived SRF.
The experimental research herein applies statistical sampling, analytical characterisation and
materials flow analysis to a new generation, fully operational SRF-producing MBT plant. To the
author’s knowledge, this is the first detailed analysis of this kind for a UK plant. Individual
process flows from mechanically processed waste are characterised using a series of fuel
properties in line with the European product standards for SRF, and confidence limits in these
properties quantified. New data on SRF quality, including biogenic content, is provided. In
seeking understand the variability in waste heterogeneity and its impact on SRF production in
an MBT plant, material flow analysis is applied across the MBT flowsheet to compute transfer
coefficients for individual unit operations. This provides a basis for critically evaluating the
performance of this specific MBT and the extent to which is it optimised for SRF production. Cont/d.
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