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Holcim burning GRP waste at Lagerdorf

World Cement,

The Danish-based pultrusion processor Fiberline has entered into agreement with Holcim and the waste-to-fuels company Zajons Logistik Entsorgungsgesellschaft (ZLE) – both located in northern Germany – to supply surplus glass fibre reinforced plastic (GRP) for thermal recycling in cement production.

Fiberline has begun sending its GRP waste to ZLE, which is located 331 km away at Melbeck in Germany, where it is shredded and added to other recycled waste to achieve a defined calorific value that is greater than the polyester resin alone. The modified waste is then sent on a further 119 km to Holcim’s cement plant at Lagerdorf, where the waste is fed into the kilns. The waste is used to provide process heat while the glass fibre content substitutes sand.

Using information supplied by Holcim, Fiberline calculates that recycling 1000 t of its GRP profile waste in cement production saves up to 450 t of coal, 200 t of chalk, 200 t of sand and 150 t of aluminium oxide. At the same time it eliminates Fiberline’s GRP waste disposal problem. The Danish company says that in the short term, the contract marks an important breakthrough for the company, but the next step will be to look at a formalised collection scheme to meet customer and user needs by ensuring that GRP waste - such as life-expired low energy windows – will not simply pile up but be recycled.

ZLE decided in 2008 to invest €4 million to build a second plant for alternative fuel production at its Melbeck H.Q., increasing total annual capacity from 50 000 to 200 000 t. The new plant will be designed to process windmill rotor blades into fuel. The company claims the Melbeck plant will be the largest alternative fuel plant in Germany.

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