AEI Compounds Ltd is a leader in the field of compounding technology, principally supplying the wire & cable and pipe manufacturing industries with thermoplastic and cross-linkable materials. From its base in Sandwich, Kent, the company produces insulation, bedding and sheathing materials for the wire and cable sector, as well as products for the manufacture of hot water pipes, fittings and under-floor heating.
As part of an ongoing programme of investment in processing facilities at its 90,000 sq ft manufacturing plant, AEI Compounds recently contracted dust extraction specialists Dust Control Systems Ltd (DCS), to install a new, energy-efficient, dust extraction plant. The requirement was for a system that would better deal with powder dust released from various stations on two high-technology compounding process lines, and ensure removal of all dust from the production area.
Before presenting their proposals, DCS carried out a thorough on-site survey to fully evaluate both the extraction requirements and the energy-saving opportunities. DCS presented their findings and put forward a proposal for a new extraction system, sized on a duty of 16,000m3/hr, which would be controlled by ECOGATE intelligent ‘on-demand’ energy-saving technology.
The new filter plant comprises an internally-sited Camfil GS12 cartridge-type reverse jet filter, complete with floor-mounted 18.5kW fanset. The robust and maintenance-friendly GS12 unit contains 12 high-efficiency HemiPleat filter cartridges which are specially designed for demanding applications, and can readily deal with the mixed compound dust encountered at AEI Compounds. Dust waste is discharged ‘pressure-free’, via a rotary valve, from the filter hopper and collected in an IBC bag.
The ECOGATE ‘on-demand’ energy-saving system employs two ECOGATE greenBOX12 controllers and a variable speed drive which regulates the fan speed. ECOGATE motorised gates, with sensors, are fitted to fifteen vent points on the compounding machines and a further two to the mixing/weighing stations. The sensors signal the greenBOX controllers to open or close gates depending on whether an individual station is active or inactive. The resultant change in extraction load is detected and the speed of the fan is adjusted accordingly. The result is a highly-efficient dust collection system, which provides precise extraction volumes only when needed, and has reduced power consumption by around 50%, when compared to the previous installation.
Chris Shenton, operations director at the site, says: “DCS engineers fully understood our particular requirements and came up with a cost-efficient extraction solution. We are extremely pleased with the installation and with the level of savings it provides.”