Groundbreaking recycling

Recycled construction materials played a key role in a claimed world-first build, while new and latest building materials processing machines are in demand for recycling applications
July 24, 2023
By Guy Woodford
Wolfgang & Hans-Jürgen Büscher in front of the full electric plug-in R3e ZERO impact crusher | Pic: Keestack- Büscher
Wolfgang & Hans-Jürgen Büscher in front of the full electric plug-in R3e ZERO impact crusher | Pic: Keestack- Büscher

German company Büscher has used Keestrack crushing and screening equipment to convert demolition waste into sustainable construction material to build what it claims is the world’s first complete house comprised of 75% recycled construction and demolition waste. The load-bearing and non-load-bearing interior wall elements are made of 100% recycled aggregates.

Wolfgang & Hans-Jürgen Büscher in front of the full electric plug-in R3e ZERO impact crusher  Pic: Keestack- Büscher
Wolfgang & Hans-Jürgen Büscher in front of the full electric plug-in R3e ZERO impact crusher | Pic: Keestack- Büscher

In June 2021, Büscher became the only company in Germany to receive general building approval (abZ) from the German Institute for Building Technology (DIBt) for load-bearing and non-load-bearing interior wall elements made of recycled concrete with a 100% natural stone substitute. In the prefabricated parts, the raw materials of gravel and sand are completely replaced by mixed demolition material.

The company's choice to use Keestrack crushing and screening equipment is also driven by its commitment to sustainability. Oppermann & Fuss, the Keestrack dealer in Germany, advised Büscher which ZERO equipment was the best fit for its applications and capacity at its recylcing site.

The Büscher site has solar panels that deliver up to 323kW/h of renewable electricity to power the concrete factory, the Keestrack R3e ZERO impact crusher, and the K4e ZERO screen. Both Keestrack machines are fully electric, powered by renewable energy, and do not have a combustion engine onboard.

As the electric motors drive most of the mobile crushing and screening equipment and power some necessary hydraulics systems, both Keestrack machines run with ZERO CO2 emissions. Keestrack is known for being an innovator and early adopter of electric e-driven equipment, and most of the Keestrack product range is available in ZERO-drive.

When plugged into the grid, like at the Büscher recycling site, where they use renewable energy using photovoltaic solar panels, the R3 and K4 produce zero-carbon emissions. The energy cost will be approximately 152kWh. Operational and maintenance costs will decrease drastically as no engine is on board to maintain.

The innovative technology, its safety features and the design of the R3 impact crusher have won several European design prizes, one of them being the Red Dot award. The very compact and easy-to-transport impact crusher is available in a diesel/hydraulic drive, electric plug-in drive (with onboard backup diesel gen-set) and ZERO drive: a fully electric plug-in without gen-set backup has a capacity of up to 250t/h.

The R3e ZERO is equipped with a vibrating feeder with a pre-screen of 1.200mm x 920mm to optimise crushing results and to minimise wear, an inlet opening of 770mm x 960mm (HxW) and a rotor diameter of 1.100mm and a rotor width of 920mm. The crusher equipped in a closed circuit with a recirculation conveyor and a precession screen of 3.100mm x 1.400mm produces a defined aggregate product size. The installed wind sifter eliminates contamination of plastics, wood or paper, and the overband magnet separates the metals. The R3e ZERO weighs 32t, and its plug-out of 125A powers the connected K4e ZERO of 28t.

The K4e ZERO has a high production capacity of up to 350t/h. The double-deck screen box of 4.200mm x 1.500mm, standard heavy-duty plate apron feeder and hydraulic adjustable screen angle gives it very good screening capabilities. The numerous options and screen decks make the K4 suitable for each job. At the recycling site of Büscher, they choose to have the fine and middle fraction conveyor on the same side of the screen to improve the accessibility for the wheeled loader.

Steve Harman (right), operations director at L&S Waste Management, and Jack Pilgrim, territory account manager for Finning UK & Ireland. Pic: L&S Waste Management-Finning UK& Ireland
Steve Harman (right), operations director at L&S Waste Management, and Jack Pilgrim, territory account manager for Finning UK & Ireland | Pic: L&S Waste Management-Finning UK& Ireland

Both Keestrack machines at Büscher have remote controls to operate the crusher and screen from the excavator. They both have an integrated water spray system that can be used if the production is too dusty. Also, both are equipped with a Keestrack-er UMTS system. This telematics software system provides real-time data and analytics. The system enables you to check the location of the machines and if they are working correctly. All aspects of a machine can be checked, and remote updates to the software can be made if necessary. It is possible to run diagnostic tests for all components, including the feeder, screen, crusher and conveyors. The Keestrack-er also functions well for maintenance planning by Oppermann & Fuss, helping to keep machines in optimum shape.

Company co-owner Wolfgang Büscher says that getting 100% prefab concrete certified was difficult and took the company eight years of research and development to gain approval. “Concrete specialists, laboratories and certification specialists were very doubtful this could be done. They all said it is impossible and not legal”, says Büscher.

Büscher asked researchers from laboratories and universities to scientifically prove what the material is capable of and what it’s not. They gave the parameters on what they wanted to achieve with the material and asked them to find out if it stood the test of time.

“By now, all scientific research has been done, and it shows exactly what is possible with 100% recycled prefab concrete and concrete elements. The new material functions perfectly, and the recipe has changed at Büscher,” says Hans-Jürgen Büscher, Wolfgang's brother and company co-owner.

Hampshire, southern England-based waste management and aggregates company L&S Waste Management has taken delivery of seven new Cat machines thanks to business expansion and fleet replacement, citing a “reliable plant with a great backup service” from Finning UK & Ireland, the world’s largest dealer of Cat machines and equipment.

With waste-treatment and recycling facilities in Portsmouth, Fareham and Southampton, the company processes 275,000 tonnes of construction and industrial waste each year and supplies ready-mixed concrete and aggregates from its facilities. It has grown from 20 staff to 150 within the last 15 years. Having bought their first Cat machine 14 years ago, the relationship with Finning has gone from strength to strength as support from Finning’s expert team has minimised unplanned downtime.

The latest machines to join their fleet include five excavators and two wheeled loaders comprising two Cat 313s, two Cat 320s, a 325, and 962M and 938M wheeled loaders with additional fire suppression, guards, and belly plates due to the harsh environment they operate in. As all the machines come with a Finning premier warranty, each one is covered for all repairs for up to five years or 8,000 hours, giving complete peace of mind.   

Steve Harman, operations director at L&S Waste Management, said: “We’ve been working alongside Finning for many years as we get great service backup from their team, and the Cat product is high-quality and reliable, which is key for us, as we have such high volumes of material going through our sites.

“They stand the test of time, and they hold a good residual value, and with the warranty package and guaranteed buyback from Finning, you know what your costs are going to be, and there are no hidden extras.”

Jack Pilgrim, territory account manager for Finning UK & Ireland, said the team supported L&S with asset management as their fleet is connected with Cat VisionLink, which provides data on fuel burn, machine health and idle times. Finning also proactively provides a monthly fleet benchmarking report sent to each site manager and senior staff.

He said: “Keeping their machines running is a top priority for L&S together with running their fleet efficiently, especially since the switch from red diesel last year, so our report for L&S breaks down their data to cover average run time (hrs) and idle time (%), the average fuel burn for their fleet, and the amount of operator-induced fault codes.

“We’re proud to support L&S as they continue to grow and expand their fleet, and our extended warranty package gives them complete peace of mind that if anything goes wrong with their Cat machine and it needs to come back into the workshop, there are no hidden fees, while our UK coverage means we can get an engineer on site fast.”

Kleemann’s new recycling-application-suited MOBISCREEN MSS 802(i) EVO will be showcased at steinexpo 2023 | Pic: Kleemann
Kleemann’s new recycling-application-suited MOBISCREEN MSS 802(i) EVO will be showcased at steinexpo 2023 | Pic: Kleemann

At steinexpo in Homberg/Nieder-Ofleiden, Germany, from 23 to 26 August 2023, Kleemann will showcase a range of its sustainable, recycling-suited crushing and screening plants and the SPECTIVE operating concept from its comprehensive product portfolio.

With the MOBIREX MR 130(i) PRO impact crusher, Kleemann presents the latest member of the PRO line. The machine combines output, precision and sustainability as a primary and secondary crusher.

Thanks to its all-electric drive concept with the option of an external power supply and, therefore, operation with zero local emissions, the plant guarantees low energy consumption per tonne of final product. The optional large double-deck post-screening unit permits the production of two classified final grain sizes. The MR 130(i) PRO covers a wide application range in natural stone and recycling. With its heavy rotor and powerful 250kW electric drive, the crushing unit guarantees a very high and stable throughput. The Continuous Feed System (CFS) guarantees a continuous crusher load.

Kleemann’s innovative digitalised operating concept SPECTIVE includes various components, such as an intuitive touch panel and different radio remote controls, that are ideally tuned to each other while accompanying the machine operator during their working day. All relevant process information and reporting are displayed on your smartphone without having to leave the feeding device. New to the SPECTIVE world is the ‘Smart Job Configurator’. The tool supports the operator in selecting the correct machine settings, facilitates day-to-day work and ensures even greater cost-effectiveness.

The new MOBISCREEN MSS 802(i) EVO has been designed as a powerful mobile scalper for evolving application challenges. Its clever plant design and flexible conversion options guarantee an optimum material flow in natural stone and recycling applications. Access to a large range of screen media and the simple setting of the screen parameters allow the MSS 802(i) EVO to adapt easily to new operating conditions. If a fine final product is to be screened from particularly coarse feed material, the machine can be quickly converted from three to two final grain sizes. Further advantages of the plant include its simple operability thanks to its intuitive control system, easy access to all relevant machine components and its drive concept with the option of an external power supply for operation with zero local emissions.

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