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Energy From Waste (EfW)

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Energy from Waste

Moving from carbon-based energy to sustainable electricity generation is a key priority for developed and developing countries. Energy from Waste (EfW) is a sustainable means to generate electricity that harnesses the energy contained in waste materials. The process not only creates a supply of cost-effective renewable energy, it also helps to reduce the volume of waste that ends up in landfills.

How does an Energy from Waste plant work?

An EfW plant uses a range of technologies to combust waste materials at high temperatures in a controlled environment. This generates heat, which is then used to produce steam to drive turbines that are connected to generaors for producing electricity. In some instances, the heat may be used directly for district heating or particular industrial processes.

After the waste material has been delivered to the plant it undergoes a pre-treatment process. This removes recyclable materials as well as substances that are not combustible. The waste that remains is then fed into combustion chambers, where it’s then burned at very high temperatures.

The heat this combustion process releases is captured and used to genarate steam that powers turbines and generates electricity. After combustion has happened, the remaining ash is treated to remove hazardous components before they are disposed of in an environmentally friendly manner.

Modern EfW plants are able to generate electricity or heat for hundreds of thousands of homes anually, meaning they can make a substantial input into the overall energy mix.

Is Energy from Waste a sustainable option?

EfW is generally considered environmentally friendly because it reduces the volume of waste that is sent to landfills. The decomposition of organic waste in landfills generates methane, a greenhouse gas associated with climate change.

EfW plants are required to be equipped with advanced emission control technologies that minimise the air pollutants that are released during the combustion process. EfW plants need to meet stringent environmental regulations that govern their operation.

What are the economic benefits of EfW?

EfW reduces the expense of landfill space and associated disposal fees. The EfW plants themselves generate revenue through the sale of electricity or heat that they generate from waste, providing income for companies and local authorities. EfW plants also create high-skilled, well-paid jobs in waste collection, processing and plant operation.

Enhancing efficiency and reducing environmental impact

A range of innovations in the EfW sector are enhancing efficiency and reducing the environmental impact of EfW generation. These include advanced combustion technologies that increase energy recovery rates and reduce emissions, the integration of EfW with other renewable generation options, and advanced waste sorting.

Essential components for the EfW sector from Stourflex

At Stourflex, we manufacture a range of essential components for the EfW sector. Pipework Expansion Joints, Anchors and Guides are used to control the movement of pipes through thermal expansion, ensuring that alignment is maintained, reducing stress on pipework and ensuring their integrity. Anti-vibration equipment absorbs the vibrations that are generated by machinery.

The highly experienced team at Stourflex offers a comprehensive range of expertise to support our customers in the EfW sector.

Contact our experienced team to find out more.