Manchester Authority Buys Odor Control System for Waste Disposal

MEGTEC Systems, Inc. of De Pere, Wis., has shipped the first two VOCSIDIZER® emission control units for a new mechanical biological treatment (MBT) waste handling installation under construction on the landfill site at Longley Lane in Manchester, England.

The Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority (GMWDA), the largest of the six United Kingdom waste authorities, wants to meet the strict European odor emission restrictions with this technology. Costain Ltd., the plant builder, ordered the emission control system from HAASE Energietechnik AG, Germany.

According to Ulrich Seibt, MEGTEC sales manager for Central Europe, this initial installation at Longley Lane is the first of three built by HAASE Energietechnik AG on GMWDA MBT sites and will be operational later this year. The other MBT plants are in Oldham and on Cobden Street in Manchester.

The GMWDA is the largest UK authority charged with waste management functions, serving approximately 973,000 households and more than 2.27 million residents from nine Districts in the Manchester, England, area. Around 360,000 tons of household waste, about 30 percent of the area’s total annual waste volume of 1.2 million tons, will be processed at the three MBT sites. With homes nearby, control of the resulting methane odor is a prime concern.

“In the MBT process, bacteria break down wet household waste, generating methane gas,” explains Seibt. “The English call it a ‘rotting system.’ Methane concentration is relatively low, but the odor is unmistakable and definitely undesirable in populated areas.”

Although UK standards limit methane emissions to 2,000 Odor Units per normal cubic meter (OU/Nm3), the GMWDA has taken its cue from a European standard originating in Germany, which restricts emissions to a much lower 500 OU/Nm3.

“Patented technology in our VOCSIDIZER system has been customized to meet this standard,” Seibt says. “These units have been successfully performing at other MBT plants with technical components by HAASE Energietechnik AG since 2003. We now have about a dozen in Germany and elsewhere in Europe. GMWDA representatives visited a system that has been running for five years with homes nearby, and there have been no problems with odor.

“In order to meet the 500 OU/Nm3 standard and eliminate the odor, our system must have a cleaning efficiency of at least 99.7 percent. The VOCSIDIZER unit is specially designed to deliver this high level of thermal efficiency. To keep the running costs at a minimum, the system is designed for 95 percent heat exchange efficiency.”

The program launched by GMWDA’s 25-year recycling and waste management contract, finalized in April, 2009, will divert more than 75 percent of Greater Manchester’s municipal waste from landfill. GMWDA’s emphasis is on recycling, with an integrated network of facilities at 27 sites, the majority of which are recycling centers for aluminum and glass.