Waste Not, Want Not: Turning Waste to Energy

Emerson's waste-to-energy efforts are bringing views of the future much nearer. 

In the movie Back to the Future Part II, Doc uses the Mr. Fusion Home Energy Reactor to convert household waste into power for the DeLorean time machine’s flux capacitor. While we may still be quite a few away from using banana peels as power, a new plant near Knaresborough Allerton, North Yorkshire, UK, is gearing up to convert waste to energy.

The power plant, which will also incorporate biogas and recycling facilities, will produce 28 megawatt-hours of electricity per hour from 320,000 tons of waste, exporting enough energy to the National Grid to power the equivalent of 40,000 homes and further helping the UK to meet the EU Energy Directive 2020 targets for renewable energy.

The facility will also divert more than 7 million metric tons of waste from landfills over its 25-year lifetime, and recover more than 1.5 million tons of recyclable materials.

Emerson will provide control systems and project services to the plant, leveraging its expertise and its Ovation distributed control system (DCS), which has been proven in waste-to-energy facilities around the world.

And, this reality is not too far in the distant future. Construction is expected to be completed in 2017, with the plant fully operational in 2018.

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