The Ascension Islands, a remote volcanic island located just south of the equator. Having no permanent residents yet a rotating population of approximately 800 people. Managing waste securely has become a growing issue previously managed by being burned in an open heap with any residue that didn’t burn sent away to landfill.
Apart from being very bad for the environment, this approach was far from sustainable especially with the growing awareness of the dangers of plastic waste. Being surrounded by so much ocean and limited land solid waste was becoming a very serious issue that needed to be addressed to prevent damaging the environment on and off the island. As such in early 2017 we were approached by the Government of the Ascension Islands to begin developing a reliable solution.
Recognising our expertise in the field gained after previously delivering waste solutions for several similar islands already. We were perfectly suited to deliver the appropriate solution to manage the destruction of all the waste produced. Even with a relatively manageable population manmade waste has to be disposed of carefully to prevent potentially hazardous contamination. An installation such as this needs a machine that is specially optimised to handle the full mix of the waste generated on the island.
As highlighted by the BBC show, The Blue Planet plastic waste is delivering a very real threat to our worlds oceans, every step that can be taken to prevent waste ending up in the sea is one taken in the right direction.
This is especially the case for remote locations lacking the infrastructure and space found in larger communities. Still needing safe, sustainable ways to manage the waste that is created on a daily basis. Where a landfill site is not possible taking up valuable space and impacting the local environment the only previous safe alternative is to ship their waste to neighbouring islands.
The best solution for treating the diverse range of waste that was needing to be disposed of and the high quantities that would need an almost continuous processing we proposed our G250 (general) high capacity incinerators which, has been designed to consistently destroy up to 250kg of solid waste an hour.
The entire solution is housed within two 40ft containers, stacked one on top of the other, which reduces the need for additional civil works required on site prior to installation. This produces a self-contained solution that can be simply placed into position ready to be commissioned and operated. This enables a rapid and easy installation in remote locations. An ideal solution for remote projects a the containers reduce the challenges of installation, handling and logistics all in one go.
The G250 is able to continuously process up to 250kg of waste through its automatic loading systems. The primary chamber has a stepped hearth to regularly move the waste through the process allowing safe continuous loading throughout the incineration process. The G250 is able to deliver a clean incineration of mixed waste types through having a large cylindrical secondary chamber with a two-second retention to ensure that only clean flue gas is returned to the environment.
Our team of engineers arrived at the Ascension Islands in middle October to begin the 4 week process of commissioning the G250 and delivering a full range of training to ensure the Islanders were able to operate and maintain the facility for the future. Located in such remote location and currently having only one flight onto the island every four weeks we know it’s not really sensible to rely on our engineers for the annual service.
Located in such a remote position quality and reliability were essential factors in the decision making process. Our brick lined refractory, delivers incredible insulation, it also ensures that any damage from loading and sustained usage can quickly and easily be repaired compared to concrete cast refractories. Any problems in the future with a brick refractory can be managed in a matter of days whereas a fault in a concrete cast refractory could put such a large machine in such a remote location out of action for months if not longer.
This installation has been another fantastic journey for all of us here working closely with the Government of the Ascension Islands through regular teleconferencing as well as their QA inspectors. A testament to the quality of the design and manufacture of our machines to have been trusted with such an important project.