Sunshine Groupe Operations Manager Colin Riley tells Waste Management Review how the rise in construction and demolition waste prompted their latest purchase.
With capital injections at a state and federal level, the Australian construction industry is booming.
Capital influx, paired with growing public consciousness around the impacts of waste and the reality of finite resources, has led to an increased number of construction companies seeking sustainable solutions for their construction and demolition waste (C&D).
Located within a 10-kilometre proximity of the Melbourne CBD, Sunshine Groupe’s Brooklyn recycling site has become a hub for the city’s C&D waste.
Operations Manager Colin Riley says C&D is now one of the company’s most commonly received waste streams.
“We are heavily invested in safeguarding the community and the environment through recycling, and as such need effective and accurate equipment to separate heavy impurities from the material we want to process,” Colin says.
“I’ve been working at Sunshine Groupe for over 20 years and the rise in C&D is substantial. A number of challenges come with that given the materials high variability and substantial weight.”
Colin says the scale of the Brooklyn site is what inspired the need for a new for a new piece of mobile sifting equipment.
“We already have lot of fixed processing equipment on site but are dealing with significant space and multiple stockpiles. Transporting waste around the site to access that fixed equipment was becoming unsustainable,” Colin says.
“After consulting with GCM Enviro, we decided to purchase a moveable Terra Select W80 Windsifter four months ago and its really solved that issue for us.”
The Terra Select W80 mobile windsifter separates stones from wood materials, wood from building rubble and impurities from aggregate.
“We depend on cleanly separated feedstock so recycled components can be further processed. Our situation is therefore ideally suited to separation via windsifting,” Colin says.
According to Colin, Sunshine Groupe use the Terra Select windsifter to process roughly 50,000 tonnes of material each day.
“The Terra Select outperforms all other windsifters I’ve used and has far exceeded my expectations,” Colin says.
The sifter can achieve a throughput of up to 120 cubic metres per hour and has an adjustable level of cleaning of up to 95 per cent, with an optimum feed grain size of one to four.
In addition to its own feed hopper, the mobile windsifter also has an integrated metering roller that Colin says enables fast turnaround times.
“The machine has flexible options for feeding material, which we can adjust depending on the specifics of what we are working with at the time,” Colin says.
“It can be adjusted to work either at an angle with a wheeled loader, or at an angle from an upstream screening plant. The dosing roller then evenly feeds the material from the hopper to the windsifter.”
If required, the discharge conveyor of the separator can be fitted with a magnet to remove metals from building rubble, further highlighting its application use for varied waste streams like C&D.
The machine is controlled centrally via a modern display, with all machine components readily accessible due to large maintenance hatches. Additionally, it is driven by its own high-output diesel engine, which supports total mobile function.
“It’s a mobile machine in every sense of the word and can be completely set up and functional within a short space of time for new locations or feedstock changeover. It also has road approval for off-site operations,” Colin says.
In addition to separation, the windsifting process protects other machines and plants by removing heavy debris before later processing stages.
When dealing with stone or concrete for example, sifting removes potentially harmful objects, purifies the material before crushing and leads to a longer shelf life for all machinery involved.
“GCM Enviro really pulled through for us, we told them what we needed, and they delivered on all fronts,” Colin says.
“The servicing and parts department is really on the ball – if we make a spare or extra parts order it arrives the following day.”
Colin says while he hasn’t needed to take them up on the offer yet, GCM Enviro has committed to sending service and maintenance teams downs to Melbourne if any issues arise.
“I’ve been in the industry for over two decades and have seen a lot of equipment, some that works well, some that doesn’t,” Colin says.
“The Terra Select W80 works so well because it takes a lot of different technology types and combines them, really expanding the capabilities of a relatively small machine.”