Penn Waste went back to a trusted partner for its optical sorters

Penn Waste, a waste and recycling company serving south-central Pennsylvania, proudly operates a state-of-the-art recycling facility spanning 96,000 square feet in York, Pennsylvania. As part of the Waste Connections family of companies, Penn Waste has been a leader in the industry since it was established in 2000.

Last year, the York material recovery facility (MRF) suffered a devastating fire that destroyed its equipment, forcing Penn Waste to rebuild its system. For the reconstruction of the container line, Penn Waste entrusted the project to Van Dyk Recycling Solutions and decided to renew its faith in Pellenc ST, as established in previous installations, by replacing six competitor’s optical sorters that were lost in the fire. The MRF reopened 363 days later as a modernized and, decidedly, more high-tech MRF. Today, the facility is one of the most advanced in the country in terms of performance, but what are the keys to success?

Install equipment easy to maintain

Mistral+ CONNECT shares the robust, all-in-one design concept of the Mistral+ Full Package. This equipment, which is TÜV Rheinland-certified, combines a rapid conveyor belt with a detection system and output box to guarantee quality along the sorting value chain. During the development phase, Pellenc ST pays particular attention to simplify the work of operators and optimize maintenance costs. Designed as a complete ergonomic system, the machine is simple to install and offers operators safe and easy access. Thanks to platform access, they can safely enter the output box for maintenance operations and no longer need to stop the line to clean lights or scanners. This new generation of machines also considerably reduces maintenance time.

Meet new sorting standards

This retrofit aimed to guarantee at least the same sorting capacities while increasing industrial performance, so, acquiring the most advanced technologies on the market was essential. There now are six new Pellenc ST optical sorters on the container line to help recover valuable fractions: PET, HDPE, PP and mixed plastics.

Equipped with the latest hardware and software innovations by Pellenc ST, Mistral+ CONNECT was the suitable machine for this project. It offers improved performance using the new “flow” detection system, which combines a new spectrometer with an extended near-infrared/visual identification system spectrum and focused illumination. This combination enables recovery to high levels of purity. The new sorting line makes things more efficient, too. Thanks to its investment in upgraded equipment, Penn Waste has witnessed a notable boost in throughput, capture, efficiency and purity. For example, Pellenc ST machines can achieve fine separation between natural and colored HDPE with even greater performance in terms of purity and efficiency.

Moreover, Pellenc ST machines are “future proof.” Thanks to the Central Nervous System software platform, operators can integrate future technologies and Pellenc ST scanners, such as upgrades like the IIoT, watermarking and artificial intelligence.

Reduce energy consumption

The new range of Pellenc ST machines stands out with its low energy consumption and minimal maintenance costs. The replacement rate for parts has been considerably reduced, and the best example is air consumption, which has been cut by 30 percent compared with previous machines. Against a backdrop of intense energy pressure, these unique market features are decisive in the choice of an optical sorting supplier.

Get ready for Industry 4.0

With the Smart&Share application, Pellenc ST optical sorters are now Industry 4.0 compatible. With this invaluable performance support tool, Penn Waste benefits from real-time data, which helps optimize maintenance operations with intelligent alerts and customized reports for increased availability and better sorting quality.

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