First RDF due at Surrey waste-gasification plant

UK: Combined AD and gasification system appears to be behind schedule, but is nearing operational status

Engie’s Surrey Ecopark is due to take its first refuse-derived fuel by the end of this month as hot commissioning of its waste-gasification element progresses. 

The news was revealed in the latest construction update, published last week, for the site, which includes a biogas and a waste-gasification facility.

The gasification element began construction in spring 2016 and was due at that point to be operational about three years later. The biogas plant started construction in the summer of 2015 and was again due to be operational about three years later.

The plant is being built for Surrey County Council by Engie’s contractor, Germany-based M+W Group. In March this year, M+W was removed from commissioning BIG’s Hull-based waste gasification plant, which it had also started to build in 2015, after failing to get the plant fully operational by last summer.

M+W is also building the gasification-equipped Levenseat plant in Scotland, which put its first phase into operation earlier this summer. Levenseat had previously said the plant would be up and running by the end of 2018.

The Surrey-based Ecopark facility is due to process 55,000 tonnes per year in a gasification element and a further 40,000t of food waste per year in a biogas element. As a whole, the Ecopark site will have a capacity of 3.6MWe, with most of its output  to be exported to the grid.

The update explains the air-cooled condenser in the gasification facility has been commissioned, while adjustments were made to the RDF bunker and to the burners to "ensure optimal performance". 

Also according to the update, hot commissioning is continuing as the biogas plant is being tested in "preparation for acceptance and handover". This part of the plant appears to be operational, but is being monitored before being handed over. 

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