Articles & Case Studies

For AD pumps and mixers, forget the supermarket approach

Posted: Friday 3rd October 2014

Founder ADBA member Landia say that they are looking forward to meeting those who are perhaps uncertain or unhappy with the purchase of a low-cost packaged system.

“We all understand the benefits of a one-stop-shop”, said Landia’s Paul Davies, “But for AD, where feedstock can be extremely varied, it simply is not worth taking a chance with pumps and mixers. Forget the supermarket approach and get some proper advice from genuinely experienced companies who have equipment that is designed for purpose”.

He added: “Mass-produced, bog-standard propeller mixers don’t last very long at all in AD environments, and with the increasing amount of acidic food waste being used as feedstock, cast iron equipment soon corrodes, so stainless steel will be far better in many applications”.

Even if the equipment is of reasonable quality, Davies implores AD operators to demand: Who is going to look after it? And: How long is it going to take to get spares? As well as: Who is going to fit them – and when??

He says that this doesn’t just apply to pumps and mixers, but potentially the feeder wagon, mill, gas detectors, blowers and flares.

Davies points to Cory, one of the UK's leading recycling, waste management and energy recovery companies, who cited maintenance as a key driver in their pump and mixing specification. Alistair Holl, Cory’s Director of Resource Management said:

“Landia’s GasMix is mounted externally on the digester so routine maintenance can be carried out with no interruptions”.

Davies continued: “It goes without saying that Cory want to achieve optimum energy production, but very importantly, a system that is on the outside of the tank has huge operational and safety benefits. Everything is at ground level, so there’s no working at heights. Nothing is in the gas-zoned area, so there’s no need for breathing apparatus. In contrast, to maintain equipment such as submersible mixers, there’s no option other than to climb up, peel back the lid of the digester and purge the tank, which is extremely costly and time-consuming. The extras of ladders, gantry, roof hatch are usually overlooked. We now see some operators running their pumps into the ground because it’s actually cheaper to replace them completely than get at them to carry out maintenance”.

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