Waste Management In Action

TANA Shark 440DT Shredder helps Tropical Mulch

GCM Enviro’s TANA Shark 440DT Shredder helped waste reduction specialist Tropical Mulch expand into tyre and mattress processing, saving councils on transport costs, and improving compaction rates and landfill airspace.

Mattresses and tyres can be some of the most rugged and often difficult to process waste streams.

To ensure mattresses are recycled safely, the steel needs to be separated, which can involve manual dismantling or mixed shredding. The steel can be separated readily from the shredded output, with a small fraction of shredded steel and wires tangled up and potentially unrecoverable.

Likewise tyres also need to be shredded, and depending on the application, can require specialised technology to convert into a valuable commodity. When tyres, mattresses or other waste streams need to be sent to landfill, reducing volumes is critical to maximising compaction rates, preserving valuable airspace and saving transport costs.

Dealing with both streams responsibly rests with the dedicated processing, recycling and waste transportation businesses of Australia, which require only the best technologies to get the job done.

In the resort town of Airlie Beach, in Queensland’s Whitsunday Coast, Paul Verwoerdt works hard to transport and shred a range of materials. As Managing Director of the family-owned business Tropical Mulch, Paul has since 1995 focused his efforts on green and general waste transport and recycling, but recently expanded into tyres, concrete, mining belt and mattress recycling. Paul says this expansion occurred during the clean-up after Cyclone Debbie – which caused damage to thousands of properties across northern Queensland.

Tropical Mulch travels to councils across Queensland and helps reduce their waste volumes. It also works with private vendors in reducing their waste.

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To aid the business’ tyre and mattress expansion, Paul needed a powerful and versatile machine to shred materials down to a range of sizes – and that’s when he discovered the TANA Shark 440DT. He ordered the machine in August last year and received it in October.

“We were using a variety of shredders for months and found we couldn’t size green waste down to the requirements we needed and that’s when we started researching and found out about the TANA,” Paul says, adding that the TANA can shred waste to an eighth of its size, reducing volumes by 40 per cent.

Referred to by GCM Enviro as the most versatile shredder on the market, the machine is capable of handing a diverse range of materials from mattresses, to tyres, cables, ragger wire and construction and demolition waste. The slow-speed multipurpose waste shredder is suitable for a variety of tasks, including pre-shredding, secondary shredding, small particle size shredding and in-line systems. It enables full control over the particle size, from 50 millimetres to 500 millimetres. GCM Enviro is the sole Australian distributor of TANA landfill compactors and shredders.

“We gave ourselves 12 months to make the TANA work for us and it’s worked even quicker than that. We are picking up a lot more work in Queensland since,” Paul says.

Paul says that Tropical Mulch is able to process up to 150 mattresses each hour, 85 cubic metres of finished green waste product each hour and 200 cubic metres each hour of pallets. The machine is able to perform shredding in one pass, allowing Paul to change the grade of the materials to suit his customer’s requirements.

“We’ve in some cases been able to reduce a council’s mattress waste by up to 85 per cent, separating the steel for recycling,” Paul says.

In the primary shredding phases, unwanted metal wires are removed using an over-band magnet and a range of screens are inserted below the rotor to generate a particular size of material. The end product size and quality can be determined and finalised by using a rotor screen with suitable mesh size out of the six available, ranging from 35 millimetres up to 220 millimetres. Ensuring the end result is efficient, the TANA Shark 440DT takes care of the shredding process, whether its a pre-shred from 500 millimetres minus or a finished product of 50 millimetres minus.

“We size the mattresses down to a 40-millimetre size and take the steel out of them, while the other unrecyclable materials usually go to landfill,” Paul says, adding that reduced waste volumes saves councils on transport costs, maximises compaction rates and preserves landfill airspace.

“The design of the rotor configuration and the interchangeable knives and screens allows us to produce anything from 50 to 500 millimetre particle size.”

Pallets which take up space in landfill are reduced by 80 per cent in volume to a 75-millimetre size – with the nails separated and sent on for recycling.

TANA’s second elevator is equipped with magnets to allow for easy separation on special materials for recycling.

Most importantly, Paul says the process all takes place with minimal contamination.

“The TANA Shark 440DT has its own process and is able to sort the bad contamination from the not so bad,” he says.

Tropical Mulch also specialises in the mulching of green waste stockpiled at council transfer stations, as well as processing materials for land clear projects, private operators and landscaping yards in preparation for material reuse. Paul says the green waste is sized from down to a 40-millimetre size.

He says the process all takes place with minimal down time, noting that GCM Enviro has been highly supportive in its aftersales service, ensuring he is able to call upon them should he encounter any difficulties.

“It’s very easy to operate and any issues come through satellite so GCM Enviro is able to fix problems in real time,” he says.

The TANA Service Center ensures maximum uptime with staff performing preventative maintenance schedules and getting in touch with its customers to alert them of any problems before they occur. Paul says he’d have no hesitation turning to GCM Enviro into the future should he require additional products.

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