UK AD plant’s heat exchanger technology wins award

HRS Heat Exchangers Ltd’s scraped surface vacuum evaporator installed at SSE’s Barkip anaerobic digestion (AD) plant in North Ayrshire., Scotland, has won the ‘Best Energy from Waste Initiative’ award at the recent National Recycling Awards.

Barkip, which was officially opened in May, is the largest combined organic waste treatment and energy generating facility in Scotland. The plant can process up to 75,000 tonnes of organic waste annually and generate 2.2 MW of electricity from the biogas combusted in gas engines.

In addition, the heat from electricity generation process is captured and used to concentrate the liquid fraction of the digestate into a nutrient rich liquid suitable for use as an agricultural fertiliser.

The plant utilises food waste and other organic matter from industries such as agriculture, food production, food retail and alcohol production. The waste is then broken down by bacteria to produce the biogas.

HRS was recognised for the company’s ability to demonstrate a creative and innovative solution along with and an effective business strategy to ensure waste minimisation with its evaporator technology.

During the evaporation process as the concentration of solids increase, the risk of fouling substances depositing on the tube wall increases. A fouled evaporator will drop quickly in heat transfer resulting in underperformance and repeated downtime.The HRS evaporator system has been designed to address these issues.

The Unicus Dynamic scraped surface heat exchanger provides continuous cleaning to the walls of the evaporator, which helps maintain the heat transfer, ensuring better utilisation of the energy.

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