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Construction : Web Exclusive | November 2015 | Source : Construction Update

Customized excavator helps Indonesian steel plant hit close to 100percentage recycling

Nine Volvo CE machines, including a specially adapted excavator, have helped a steel producer in Cilegon, Indonesia recycle over 97% of the waste material from its steel-making process. In the two years since the machines arrived the customer is reporting excellent success.

Previously at the PT Krakatau POSCO plant in Cilegon, Indonesia all of the waste materials produced as part of its 3 million t annual steel production was going to landfill. The situation was clearly unsustainable both from an environmental and business standpoint as the huge volume of waste not only ended up as unnecssary landfill, but also contained material that was of value - if it could be sold on.

So the company called in PT Korea Resources Recycling & Green (PT KRnG) to develop a solution to crush, separate and then recycle the waste sludge, dust and slag from its blast furnace. And PT KRnG in turn called in Volvo CE to try and figure out what machinery could be used to handle the waste materials in this difficult application.

There were several specific requirements for the work, most importantly being able to keep machine operators at a safe distance from the molten waste, which can reach temperatures of 1,600°C. Another limitation on the project was the very tight turning radius available for removing the waste from the furnace and transferring it to trucks.

Volvo CE´s team, together with local dealer PT Indotruck Utama (ITU), worked together to come up with an equipment mix that is currently delivering excellent results at the facility.

For the removal of the molten waste from the furnace, a specially-adapted EC700CL was specified with an extended boom and a shovel attachment. This combination created sufficient distance between the operator’s cab and the molten waste, while the tracked unit with its 360° swing radius meant that incoming trucks could be comfortably loaded within the tight space available.

Edy Martanto, who has been operating the EC700CL for PT KRnG since it arrived at the job site almost two years ago, said the machine was performing exceptionally.

“This is the most superior 70 t excavator I have ever operated. It is powerful and responsive – despite its size – and its ability to maneuver in tight spaces has helped us expedite the loading process on to the trucks. It also consumes an average of just 36 liters of fuel per hour which is great fuel efficiency,” he said.

Despite the brutal work setting for the EC700CL its undercarriage, upper body and cab are all in excellent condition and it has racked up 3,400 hours of operation to date. Among the other Volvo CE machines working at the site is an EC480DL with a magnet attachment which is used in the recycling process to remove steel particles from the waste for return to the steel mill. The remainder of the waste is ground into small particles and sold to concrete, asphalt and fertilizer producers.

The PT Krakatau POSCO plant is a joint venture between PT Krakatau, South East Asia’s largest producer, and POSCO, the world’s third largest steel producer. Cilegon, where the plant is located, is known as ‘Steel City’ owing to its thriving metals industry.

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