What is your product?
The Dragon from UK manufacturer Tidy Planet. It is an integrated energy-from-waste system that converts food and packaged food waste into green energy at the client’s own facility.
How does it work?
Food and organic waste are first loaded into the drying system using either the integral bin loading system or into the feed hopper via an automated shredding system.
It is processed for eight hours, when the waste is heated and converted into a dry granular biomass with low moisture content. This material is then transferred via a screening system to remove contamination and packaging.
From here it is loaded into the storage hopper. This processed biomass is high in energy and can be used as fuel directly or mixed with wood pellets. Next it is fed into a combustion system where it is used to generate heat, which can be utilised on-site to generate hot water or steam.
Where would it ideally be used?
Any business generating food waste and food contaminated with packaging, in excess of 200 kg per day, such as caterers, hotels, hospitals, food manufacturers, universities, airports and mining facilities.
What benefits does it offer?
The dragon eliminates the need to transport the waste off-site and so reduces the associated costs and carbon footprint. Waste is processed on a daily basis, which eradicates the smells and problems associated with storage of food waste.
The Dragon system allows the customer to utilise the waste as a resource for generating energy. The system is simple to use, compact and easy to install, making it an option for most sites.
It also gives the business an opportunity to take control of its waste stream and fix costs.
Where has it been used?
A demonstration site is based at a large hotel in the south of England. The first fully transportable system has been built for British Petroleum for use at its gas pipeline site in Georgia. The BP unit can process 600kg of food waste a day and generates 100kW/hour of hot water.
The system is capable of processing 200kg up to 200 tonnes per day. Costs vary as each system will be bespoke.
The Dragon eliminates the cost of waste disposal while generating value in the form of energy. It also receives incentives in the UK as part of the Renewable Heat Incentive. Return on investment can be as fast as 18 – 24 months.
What about maintenance?
The system is robust and easy to upkeep, with only a basic maintenance regime required.
What is its life span?
With regular maintenance the system will run for a minimum of 15 years.
A variety of financial and operating alternatives are available from leasing options to fully managed energy services company packages.