Latest findings from the research and practice of secondary raw materials processing

Just under 60 experts from industry, science and research took up the invitation issued by Prof. Dr Sylvia Schade-Dannewitz and her team from the Department of Environment and Recycling Engineering at Nordhausen University of Applied Sciences to the 5th Nordhausen Secondary Raw Material Workshop, which was held from 18.-19.10.2012 at the AUGUST-KRAMER INSTITUTE, to learn about the latest findings and issues from research and laboratory practice in the processing of secondary raw materials.

The attendees included many partners from the successful cooperative network that Prof. Schade-Dannewitz has built up over past years. Accordingly the 2-day workshop was opened with the signing of another contract sealing the future close cooperation between the Montan University of Leoben/Austria and Nordhausen University of Applied Sciences. Then in the first paper of the workshop, under the title “Electroseparation in secondary raw material processing – a status report”, Univ.-Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr. mont. ­Helmut Flachberger from the new partner university reported on the research focuses of the Chair of Mineral Processing at the Montan University of Leoben. Electroseparation is especially suitable when high product purities are required, and it has great potential both for secondary raw material processing and mineral processing. Subsequently, with his observations on the “Optimization of waste in­cineration plants – recycling and pollutant sink”, Prof. Dr.‑Ing. Karl J. Thomé-Kozmiensky outlined the importance of these plants. According to Thomé-Kozmiensky, recycling and incineration are not in competition with each other. On the contrary, the two processing principles complement each other and are essential for ecological and economic waste management.

Focus on the morning of the second day of the event was the analysis of waste-derived fuels. Under discussion, for example, were the instrumental possibilities of the X-ray fluorescence analyzer (Dipl.-Ing. Volker Hückelkamp, Spectro ­Analytical Instruments, Kleve) as well as tests on the dependences of selected elements in waste-derived fuel analysis (Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Petra Hauschild, FH Nordhausen). Moreover Dr. Marc Bläsing, Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, presented mass spectrometric tests on the release of inorganic trace substances during the combustion or gasification of solid fuels. The paper by Dr. Rolf Becker-Kaiser, Eurofins Umwelt GmbH, specifically addressed metal analysis in the environmental sector and the corresponding development of resources. To conclude this session, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Sylvia Schade-Dannewitz presented the current status of work on the standardization of the pressing drill and the press method – process engineering and analysis technology that was largely developed at the FH Nordhausen.

The last session was devoted to the latest process engineering developments in material recycling to achieve more efficient recovery of valuable materials in recycling processes. To minimize losses in the process chain and achieve optimum separation efficiency, precise identification of the general conditions is necessary, as Dipl.-Ing. Nils R. Bauerschlag showed in his paper “Separation technology used efficiently”. Depending on the composition of the mixed materials, sorting criteria should be developed, based on metering of the volume flow the delivery rate can be regulated and the sizing of the plant should be based on the material streams to be processed. From the paper sorting sector, Dipl.-Betriebswirtin (FH) Angela Hanke, Entsorgungstechnik Bavaria GmbH, Unterschleissheim, presented various plant concepts. Following an overview of the modern sorting technologies, Hanke reported on the current requirements for sorting plants and the key factors for modern plant design. She discussed monitoring as one possibility to optimize separation efficiency.


Papers on current research work within the framework of the joint project of the FH Nordhausen and the Altenburg-based machine engineering company “Schulz und Berger Luft- und Verfahrenstechnik GmbH” rounded off the workshop. M. Eng. Christian Borowski, FH Nordhausen, discussed the pneumatic bag opener and reported on initial experience in field trials. The focus was on the optimization of the compressed air technology and the possibility of combining compressed air technology and dry ice. Prof. Dr.-Ing. Sylvia Schade-Dannewitz, FH Nordhausen, discussed the various potential applications of the vacuum separator based on the example of tests in plastics sorting as well as tests in sorting paper/card/cardboard. Finally, an overview was given on the progress in the development of a rotary deduster. Dr. rer. nat. Jürgen Poerschke presented the concept and the experimental set-up of the plant while Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Michael Rutz, FH Nordhausen, informed workshop attendees about the initial test results with a view to existing challenges and potential applications for the rotary deduster.


During the 5th Nordhausen Secondary Resources Workshop, the Department of Environment and Recycling Engineering at the FH Nordhausen presented itself again as an attractive department dedicated to a very dynamic field of research. Here it retains its practical orientation in the special issues from research and laboratory practice in secondary raw material processing.


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