The core: The large granulator

The powerful large Rotary Cutter granulators from Getecha constitute the core equipment of recycling process lines in many recycling plants. The Aschaffenburg company not only supplied the granulators for a Dutch recycling plant but also large parts of the conveying, dust extraction and packaging equipment.

CVB Ecologistics, with headquarters in the Dutch city of Tilburg, represents an established factor in the European recycling industry, and in its ten subsidiaries it recycles paper and plastic waste from all over the world. In 2012, CVB management acquired another recycling company and was faced with the task of needing to expand its capacities, which necessitated the modernization and expansion of the existing facilities. In mid-2013 this task was presented by CVB to the German shredding and automation specialist Getecha. To increase the efficiency of the operation, the further transport of the regenerated product into Big Bags should be ensured in addition to feeding the material to be ground. The order awarded to Getecha and its Dutch distribution partner S-point BV therefore not only comprised the installation of two new large granulators and the integration of the existing shredding equipment but also the realisation of the conveying systems for granulator feeding as well as dust removal and packaging of the ground material.

“One key requirement of the customer was the expansion of the processing capacities by up to 2.8 tons per hour” shares S-point CEO Gern-Jan Drinkwaard. He therefore recommended the use of the large Rotary Cutter granulator 6015 as core equipment of the new overall plant. The cutting element of this hopper granulator consists of a 1500 mm wide 5-blade rotor (diameter 600 mm) and three stator blades (scissor-cut). The main application of the machine equipped with powerful drives – a 132 kW motor in the case of Tilburg – is shredding large plastic parts.

The RS 6015 handles both sticky flashes from blow moulding machines and scrap web rolls as well as solid panels or entire fuel tanks. In Tilburg, apart from polypropylene material residues from the plastics processing industry, especially large volumes of worn plant markers from flower and herbs cultivation end up in the hopper of the large granulator. Boxes, cups and smaller lumps from polypropylene as well as carton residues are shred here.

Various adjustments were made to adapt the RS 6015 optimally to its tasks. “To prevent bridge formation in the funnel and to optimise throughput, the hopper was equipped with a press-down feature” explained Drinkwaard. This is practical when large-volume and lightweight but expanding residues must be shred. In addition, CVB management opted for equipping the new RS 6015 with the EnergySave motor controller from Getecha. This controller always supplies the motor with only the actually required voltage without loss of torque. This results in substantial energy savings.

Getecha was able to apply its conveying competence in Tilburg even at several points. On the one hand, the new granulators – CVB had meanwhile decided to also acquire a RS 6009 that had been leased originally – had to be linked logistically with the existing shredding machines and, on the other hand, the new RS 6015 was supposed to be fed from two directions. The result is obvious now when taking a look at the granulator: At the front a 1100 mm wide (useful width) conveyor belt runs up to the hopper and feeds it with material residues loaded at irregular intervals by forklift trucks.

From the left side an additional conveyor belt runs up to the RS 6015. It is used to load the granulator hopper continuously with pre-shred material from the shredder. However, this constitutes only roughly half of the entire shred material because the other half is first separated by a distribution belt and transported to one of the older CVB granulators via one of the existing conveyor belts.

All conveyor belts for granulator feeding were engineered and built by Getecha. Another important factor for the system integration of old and new was the load-dependent control of the RS 6015 via automatic control of all conveyor belts as well as the shredder output. It provides continuous material flow and prevents overloading of the granulators. The entire plant is run via a central control system from Getecha into which the control of all existing systems was also integrated.

Beyond this, Getecha realised the extraction equipment with ground material and exhaust air dedusting as well as filling the regenerate into Big Bags. A medium pressure blower with cyclone separator was positioned next to the RS 6015 which sends the shred material from the granulator to a dedusting system developed by Getecha. All interfering parts are separated here from the ground material to produce a clean regenerate. Dedusting is followed by the automatic filling of the cleaned material into Big Bags. The rack for accommodating two Big Bags is also supplied by Getecha and features a filling level monitor which automatically switches filling of the two transport bags. At the same time, the previously extracted fine portions are collected in a third Big Bag.

The second Getecha granulator at CVB – the originally leased RS 6009 – was equipped with an automatic Big Bag filling station. Its task primarily consists of shredding mixed waste from PET, PE, ABS and PS.

The entire new plant was set up, installed and commissioned over a period of approximately two weeks by Getecha installers and their Dutch colleagues from S-point. “It was important to us right from the start that our customer always has a key contact available for any questions. We therefore not only supported the initial planning work but also the complete setup phase” emphasised Gern-Jan Drinkwaard. The kick-off for commissioning the new granulating line in Tilburg took place at the end of 2013.

Press release July 2014
plastics technology / recycling / granulation technology / disposal engineering