Fluid Energy Processing and Equipment, recently delivered a Model 42 ThermaJet flash drying system to the Water Department of a major metropolis. The department will use the flash dryer to reduce waste volumes and costs associated with processing municipal sludge.
The unit was sold to a private company, who coordinated the installation. Together, the Water Department and the private company sought to develop a method to reduce the amount of waste associated with municipal sludge. The project surfaced due to the rising costs of landfilling the mass, coupled with the dwindling amount of disposal space for the waste.
The Model 42 ThermaJet features a feed capacity of 8 to 10 tons of sludge per hour. The unit comes equipped with additional features including a natural gas air heater, a baghouse, heat recovery and a backmix system. The system uses low-pressure hot air, introduced into the ThermaJet through nozzles, to create a high velocity, rotating stream of air and product. The rotating stream rapidly sweeps incoming feed into the drying chamber, where deagglomeration commences. As the product dries, it exits into a classification zone. Properly sized particles exit as a fine powder, while heavier, moist particles remain for further processing.
Prior to the ThermaJet installation, the water department operated an elaborate and expensive process in order to decrease sludge volume. The process required centrifuging, mixing with wood chips and extended sun drying to transform the sludge into a mass suitable for landfill.
The extremely efficient ThermaJet system takes a solids sludge and backmixes it with dried materials to produce a 50 percent solids cake. The cake then feeds via pneumatic injection into the ThermaJet, where it dries to an 80 to 90 percent solids mass. As it exits the ThermaJet system, the finished product is a fine powder with a significantly reduced volume. The powder is then sent to landfill at a lesser cost due to reduced volume. It can also be mixed with coal fines to produce fuel pellets or mixed with phosphates to create fertilizer.
The revolutionary technology has proved very successful thus far. The process has substantially decreased the amount sludge sent to landfills. The system’s success has spawned interest from other major metropolitans who have considered implementing the technology in their own municipal sludge processes. If the process becomes widespread, it has the potential to decrease the entire country’s total landfill volume by a considerable margin.
ThermaJet flash drying systems are capable of handling a wide variety of feeds including slurries, sludges, filter cakes and moist solids. Advantages of the system include high thermal efficiency, simple clean-up and changeover, optimized productivity and flexible feed capabilities. Exceptionally energy efficient, ThermaJet systems can replace several pieces of equipment due to its simultaneous drying and deagglomerating capabilities.
For over 40 years Fluid Energy has installed ThermaJet Flash Dryers both domestically and internationally.
For more information on the ThermaJet Flash Dryer Systems, or any other powder processing equipment, please contact Fluid Energy at 4300 Bethlehem Pike, Telford, PA 18969; phone: 215-721-8990; fax: 215-721-2355 or via e-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org.