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Media / Application stories / Atlas Copco filtration solutions help to turn Nottingham’s waste into energy

Atlas Copco filtration solutions help to turn Nottingham’s waste into energy


Wilrijk, Belgium, January 2014. FCC Environment, one of the UK’s leading recycling and waste management companies, is using the latest energy-efficient compressor and filtration solutions from Atlas Copco to help turn waste into energy at its Nottingham waste processing site.

The energy from the company’s commercial and domestic waste processing facility in Nottingham produces heat and steam to generate power without using fossil fuels. Since the facility opened 39 years ago, it has reduced the amount of Nottinghamshire’s waste going to landfill sites by 5 million tonnes.

GA 90 compressors for great energy savings
The FCC facility needs quality compressed air for a number of process applications from emission monitoring equipment to the pulsing of filtration bags employed in the Flue Gas Treatment stages of the operation. Air quality is extremely important, since any contaminants in the air supply would affect the instrumentation that is vital to flue gas monitoring and risk non-compliance with the company’s Environmental Licence stipulations. This requirement for high quality standards is the principal reason FCC turned to Atlas Copco to meet its compressed air needs. Equipment installed at the site includes two GA 90 screw compressors − one fixed speed and the other a VSD machine, (capable of matching output to user demand for optimum energy savings). The system was augmented with three vertical air receivers, and to ensure first class dry air at the point of use, three BD desiccant dryers with a guaranteed dew point of -70 degrees C. These were then fitted and connected to Atlas Copco’s latest in particulate and coalescent filters. Environmental protection was also ensured with the installation’s EWD condensate management system that prevents any possible drainage contamination.

Lower pressure drop thanks to latest filter technology 
When the Atlas Copco team surveyed the installation site they found a great deal of external pipework between the location of the compressors and the various points of use throughout the production facility so it was essential that pressure drop within the air net had to be kept to minimum. FCC was one of the first compressor customers to have Atlas Copco’s brand new filter range units installed. The design of these innovative filters means a pressure drop of only half of that associated with conventional coalescing or particulate filters is incurred. This translates into significant energy savings. Alan Burkill, Atlas Copco Sales Engineer, the principal liaison on the FCC project outlines the core benefits to be derived from the compressed air system: “When we sat down to discuss potential requirements, life cycle costs and energy efficiency was at the forefront of everyone’s mind. Our proposal was a solution that delivered the lowest life cycle cost to our customer and energy-efficient filtration was an integral and indispensable part of the installation.”

Fitting perfectly with customer’s requirements
FCC’s Eastcroft plant generates steam used by many public buildings in Nottingham such as the National Ice Centre. In addition, it keeps 5,000 families warm while keeping the climate a little cooler. Atlas Copco was seen to be on the same page in an endeavour to make sure that no energy is wasted. From Philip Eyre, FCC Environment’s Maintenance Manager’s perspective the whole system is a perfect fit with FCC’s ethos: “I have known Atlas Copco for over 23 years and have always had a good quality service from them in all respects. The quality of their products definitely fits with what FFC requires in this facility.”

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Atlas Copco is an industrial group with world-leading positions in compressors, expanders and air treatment systems, construction and mining equipment, power tools and assembly systems. With innovative products and services, Atlas Copco delivers solutions for sustainable productivity. The company was founded in 1873, is based in Stockholm, Sweden, and has a global reach spanning more than 170 countries. In 2012, Atlas Copco had 39 800 employees and revenues of BSEK 90.5 (BEUR 10.5).

Atlas Copco’s Compressor Technique business area provides industrial compressors, gas and process compressors and expanders, air and gas treatment equipment and air management systems. It has a global service network and offers specialty rental services. Compressor Technique innovates for sustainable productivity in the manufacturing, oil and gas, and process industries. Principal product development and manufacturing units are located in Belgium, Germany, the United States, China and India.