13 Dec 2002
Whytes Gully SWERF® Technical Performance Update - Progress Encouraging
Energy Developments Limited has continued to progress the performance testing of the Whytes Gully SWERF® in its current configuration following the decision to proceed without the char gasifier component as announced on 25 October, 2002.
As previously announced, the Whytes Gully SWERF® has the potential to achieve diversion of approximately 80% of the incoming waste stream from landfill in the near term.
Performance testing is progressing steadily with the focus on gradually increasing the waste tonnage processed through the plant. Teething issues normally expected in the ramp up phase are being experienced and dealt with in an expedient and timely manner.
To date, the level of diversion and the progress of the testing of the components of the SWERF® technology are encouraging.
A brief update on each step in the SWERF® process follows:
Step 1 - Waste Sterilisation and Recyclables Recovery
The autoclave (sterilisation), the mechanical recyclables recovery and the organic pulp preparation processes are performing to expectations, achieving consistent throughputs required for the gasification process.
Step 2 - Primary Gasification
With the re-instatement of the dry char removal system, the primary gasifier is now running consistently. Primary gasifier runs of increasing length, including a run of 50 hours, have been achieved. These have been at rates in excess of 75% of design capacity of the gasifier (each gasifier is designed to process the organics derived from 25,000 tonnes of waste annually). A number of minor material handling issues in the gasifier pulp feed system have limited primary gasifier throughput to date.
The char produced by the gasification process meets the NSW EPA licence requirements and is being disposed of at the Whytes Gully landfill site.
An interim arrangement for the Bio Oil produced from the gasification process is in place and evaluation of the Bio Oil potential continues.
Step 3 - Power Generation
During the extended operating periods of the SWERF® plant the power generation plant has again demonstrated its ability to operate on syngas at a full engine rating of 1.35MW per unit, with electricity being exported to the grid.
The performance testing of the SWERF® Whytes Gully plant continues. Testing will be suspended for two weeks during the Christmas / New Year period commencing 20 December 2002.
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