When considering the “when” and “why” to shred waste, understanding the shredding technology available is important. Reviewing expected throughput in your facility is the first factor to consider in shredder technology. Whether an industrial waste shredder has one or multiple shafts determines the throughput.
Single Shaft Shredders
Single shaft shredders yield lower throughput than its counterparts. If the material processed is relatively soft, such as wood, or consists of small particles, a single shaft shredder is a lower investment option. If a single shaft shredder is being considered, it would be optimally applied in cases when the MSW material has been broken down first with a pre-shredding machine.
Single-shaft shredders often do not handle contaminants well; the input material must be free from metal, inerts, and other hard contaminants.
Dual Shaft Shredders
Dual shaft shredders have opposite rotating rotors that pull the material between the two. They are available with knives or shears.
Dual Shaft Shredders With Cutters
In a dual-shaft shredder with cutters (knives), the material is cut when it passes over the cutter and a counter-knife. This creates a clean, scissor-like cut and the output it is finer. Cutter technology is best for processing film or other tensile material.
Dual Shaft Shredders With Shears
Shear shredders have large oblong lobes instead of knives. Material is pulled through the lobes, tearing it in the process. The throughput rate and output size are determined by the tolerance between the lobes. Shear shredding is best for materials such as metals, large appliances, cars, and other bulky, tough waste material. However, if homogenous particle size is required or long films are present, then these shredders are not the best choice.
To determine the best size reduction machine for a facility, Vecoplan waste engineers discuss with its customer's input material and company goals. The recommended technology considers these components but also considers future variables so the customer is not stuck with a shredding system that is inflexible to adapt to market changes. Vecoplan’s experience is that material changes over time based on availability, legislation, supply, and other unforeseen factors.
One size does not fit all with shredder selection. In order to invest in the right shredder, the operational needs and processing economics must first be clearly understood. Once these factors are defined, then shredder technology and options are more easily determined to meet goals. Mapai specializes in size reduction technology with machines that are engineered specifically to handle the waste. The right system that allows an operation to produce a valuable end-product can make a business sustainable for decades.
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