Waste to energy
Increasing energy production in waste-to-energy plants
Waste-to-energy (WtE) plants and energy-from-waste (EfW) facilities can improve energy efficiency and increase output by using higher-quality waste fuel. More heat and electricity are generated when the solid waste fuel consists of components with high calorific value that are optimal for combustion in terms of shape and size.
“Waste-to-energy” is the process of generating energy from waste. Generally, this is done by combusting recycled municipal solid waste and industrial waste in grate incinerators or fluidized bed incinerators. WtE plants and EfW facilities turn pre-processed waste into heat and electricity, which are directed to heating networks and electricity grids for communities and businesses to use.
The main sources of energy are municipal solid waste and industrial waste discarded by households, businesses and communities. This mixed waste, by nature, contains various components with different sizes and variable energy content. Sorting valuable metals and other nonflammable materials out before combustion increases the calorific value of the waste fuel and also boosts the energy production of the WtE plant.
Another key factor in the waste-to-energy process is the homogeneity of the waste fuel: Particles that are the right size catch fire at the right time , burn steadily and produce the maximum amount of energy. Optimally shredded waste provides the continuous material flow that is needed for stable and efficient combustion. As a result, for example, the variation in emissions decreases, making filtering the impurities more effective.