PST factory update
In April 2011, ARN opened the new PST factory in Tiel. The aim is to achieve 95% recycling of old cars in 2015. The factory processes waste from the shredder a stage further. To keep you updated with progress at the factory, every month we give you a glimpse behind the scenes.
In February 2012, the latest module of the factory line went into production: fibre reprocessing. Hans van de Greef, director of the PST factory: ‘The task now is to align this module with the other modules, so that they are in step with each other. If one module performs less well, that has an immediate effect on production capacity.’
The factory faces various obstacles. ‘We’ve been processing material from the shredder at HKS for some time now. But the material is lighter than expected, which means that a larger volume has to go through the line than we originally bargained for, and that was having a negative effect on productivity. We solved the problem by aligning the machines with each other in a different way. That’s increased the uniformity and continuity of the process, and in turn productivity.’
The fibre densification process also presents challenges. ‘We have to raise the temperature to 150–160°C for this process. Before we can continue processing afterwards, the material needs to have cooled off –and with fibres, that’s not so simple. Cooling is achieved by adding water, and the amount added must be extremely precise. If you add too much, the fibres become too wet. Not enough water can cause a fire. At the moment we’re investigating the best way to carry out this process.’
New test assignment
The factory is working hard to counteract the teething troubles described above. ‘We hope to have remedied everything within four or five weeks.’ In the meantime, the shredder at Van Dalen has been given a new test assignment. ‘We’re going to look at how this material reacts to our processing.’ In short, to be continued…