24-25 Jul 2024

AWRE Exhibitor – Eriez Magnetics: case study

Jun 19, 2017

SA recycling discovers Eriez Metal Loss Monitor's potential to improve profits and predict inefficiencies

The recycling industry is perpetually looking for innovative new products able to mine the ferrous and nonferrous metal found in the automotive shredder residue (ASR) streams. Despite improvement in recovery technology, scrap yard operators still know intuitively that they continue to miss metal as they watch potential profits go to the landfill. Now intuition can be confirmed with hard data.

The Eriez® Metal Loss Monitor (MLM) was developed to quantify the effectiveness of what is sometimes a very qualitative process. This device takes the guesswork out of estimating metal losses, and gives users the ability to spot metals that would otherwise be lost.  It applies smart phone technology to keep operators informed via automatic text and email alerts when ‘hits’ exceed pre-determined thresholds.

While the MLM was developed and tested in Eriez Technical Center and in factory trials, the R & D team recognized that a full-scale field evaluation would be the acid test. Knowing that installing and testing at a customer site was critical, Eriez identified several processors who indicated a Metal Loss Monitor would be helpful to their operations by increasing metal recovery.

In particular, one person who expressed a keen interest was George Adams, CEO of SA Recycling who are known as a world leader in the metal recycling industry. SA Recycling serve both a regional and worldwide market having more than 50 facilities located in California, Arizona and Nevada.  As a full service ferrous and non-ferrous metal recycler, the company continually strives to improve metal recovery.

Processor sought improved recovery

The MLM began to pay for itself soon after it was installed when it alerted users that an excessive amount of metal was being lost.  “A product such as this has been needed for a long time,” said Adams. “We simply don’t know what value is leaking out into the waste stream and we don’t know when equipment is out of adjustment, or needs maintenance until our metal yields are down.”

“Now we are aware of how much metal we’re losing in ten minute increments and can take action immediately,” he noted. “And we can know this anywhere on the globe by the software’s web portal and remote reporting with instant messages.”

The MLM continually counts metal losses, giving users the ability to observe the performance of their system over time. Metal that passes the monitor produces an alarm signal (horn/beacon) and the event is recorded in a data file. With the MLM in place, maintenance issues and adjustment requirements are quickly spotted when losses spike. The data gathered also offers beneficial insight needed to properly evaluate whether additional or different separators should be incorporated to reduce metal losses. In essence, the MLM system is a useful tool to help troubleshoot and improve overall circuit performance.


Bundled as a package with the MLM

Eriez’ Data Acquisition and Reporting package opens up endless opportunities for trend analysis and statistical process control. All data is instantly visible to anyone, anywhere, and anytime through a web portal and remote reporting. The web portal allows for text alerts which are immediately sent to a user’s mobile device when losses rise above an upper control limit calculated by Eriez.

The MLM and accompanying data acquisition and web portal can be used as a last check on the final waste conveyor or on multiple lines throughout the process. For example, if a user has two or three size fractions, an MLM can monitor each one separately. Rather than trying to determine the source of losses on the final conveyor, this multiple arrangement allows plant staff to quickly identify the problem area and react quickly to enact a solution. The MLM gives users ample warning and immediate feedback. Without the MLM, problems are only determined after it is too late – when overall metal yields are low and metals have permanently lost to the landfill.

Upstream and downstream positioning

As another example, the MLM can be positioned upstream of hand pickers to provide assistance. An optional ink marker system alerts pickers of locations to search for lost metal. Alternatively, it can be placed downstream of pickers before the bunker. Downstream positioning gives supervisors the ability to track pickers’ performance, provide incentives and accurately assess how many pickers are necessary.


Data Acquisition logs historical information

In addition to providing real-time alerts, MLM Data Acquisition logs historical information for long term tracking purposes.  Data from the MLM can be used with a statistical process control program to generate control charts measuring long-term process improvements as upgrades and equipment adjustments are applied. Using the MLM should result in these performance charts indicating a steadily declining metal loss over a given period of time.

With this technology, scrap yard operators can watch how well their yards perform from afar.  This gives operators the peace of mind they want.  It improves efficiency by increasing metal recovery by alerting users to metal losses. Additionally, it provides the necessary data to project the amount of metals lost which facilitates the cost-benefit analysis required in determining if an investment in additional separation equipment could result in greater profits for the yard.

Eriez is recognized as world authority in separation technologies. The company’s magnetic separation, metal detection, materials feeding, screening, conveying and controlling equipment have application in the process, plastics, rubber, metalworking, packaging, recycling, mining, aggregate and textile industries. Eriez manufactures and markets these products through 12 international facilities located on six continents. 


The Australasian Waste & Recycling Expo runs from August 23-24 at the Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre.

Eriez Magnetics will be exhibiting at AWRE 2017 on stand C11. Register now for free entry


For more information, contact Eriez Magnetics Pty Ltd on 03 8401 7400, www.eriez.com or send an e-mail to [email protected]


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