To enhance metal separation and removal in their Plastic Waste Management System, Recycled UK has purchased and installed 7 Magnetic Separators of two different types designed, manufactured and supplied by Bunting Magnetics Europe Ltd.
Recycled UK, based in Wolverhampton in the West Midlands, is one of the UK’s leading providers of total waste management solutions and their ability to recycle many different grades of plastic means that they are able to offer a plastic waste management system to clients in more than ten different industries. Bunting Magnetics Europe Ltd, with the European headquarters in Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, designs, manufacturers and supplies a wide range of Magnetic Separation and Metal Detection solutions for metal recovery and removal.
Recycled UK was established in 2006 and relocated to their present site in 2009. The plastic received is both from primary manufacturing and secondary recycling channels across the UK. Presently, they handle and process up to 200 tonnes per month of reground plastics.
As with all plastics recycling plants, metal contamination is a serious issue and costs in terms of both production downtime and damage to equipment such as shredders and granulators. The level of metal contamination can vary enormously, but the right protection needs to be in place to prevent damage to costly granulator blades.
To achieve the best separation, Recycled UK has now installed two different types of Magnetic Separator. On the end of their conveyors, they have replaced their standard head drive pulleys with Magnetic Pulleys. Material is conveyed up and into the magnetic field of the Magnetic Pulley where ferrous metal is attracted and held to the surface of the belt. Non-magnetic material continues to fall under its normal trajectory with the captured ferrous metal being held and then discharged into a separate collection bin underneath. The Magnetic Pulley has a diameter of 150mm and is 975mm long. As the Magnetic Pulley replaced the drive pulley, the surface is lagged with 8mm of rubber to provide extra grip. To assist with belt tracking, there is a 15mm groove in the middle of the Magnetic Pulley. This existing belt tracking guide meant that Bunting had to redesign the Magnetic Pulleys to suit the location. The types of metal being removed include long blots, washers, nuts and smaller tramp iron.Paul Cotton, Production Director of Recycling UK Limited, first met Bunting on their stand at the major UK plastics exhibition, Interplas staged at the NEC in Birmingham in 2014. Paul already had an idea of how to solve the problem and after the exhibition met up with Carlton Hicks, Bunting’s UK Sales Manager, on their site in Wolverhampton. The first priority was to install Magnetic Separators on new conveyors.
Since the installation of the Magnetic Pulleys and Plate Magnets there have been no stoppages due to metal contamination. Prior to the installation, large and small metal contamination had been passing through the plant including large spanners, bolts, nails, washers and fine iron.Recycled UK also installed 4 Plate Magnets of 3 different sizes. All had flat faces with 2 being 1000mm wide by 300mm long and then others being 700mm by 400mm and 600mm by 300mm. All the 4 Plate Magnets were high strength Rare Earth Magnet models replacing weaker and older Ferrite Magnets. The Plate Magnets have been installed in chutes on the discharge end of conveyors and also suspended over conveyors. The installed Plate Magnets are even removing and capturing fine iron filings from the conveyed plastic.
Recycled UK Limited continues to invest in the plant to improve productivity and efficiency.Paul Cotton explained why they purchased from Bunting. “It was very good timing that we were ready to address the metal contamination problem when we met Carlton and Bunting at the Interplas exhibition. They came and visited our site soon after the exhibition and quoted us competitive prices that meant the project could go ahead straight away.”