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Calibre Consulting wins Silver at INNOVATE NZ Awards

Calibre Consulting wins Silver at INNOVATE NZ Awards

Calibre Consulting has won a Silver Award at the 2015 INNOVATE NZ Awards of Excellence for the improvements made to the anaerobic digestion systems at Palmerston North City Council’s (PNCC) Waste Water Treatment Plant.

The INNOVATE NZ Awards of Excellence are presented by the Association of Consulting Engineers New Zealand and celebrate great projects demonstrating a high level of technical expertise, innovation, complexity and above all, customer service.

Calibre Consulting proposed a capacity upgrade of the existing digesters by installing new technology for efficient co-digestion of fat, oil and grease rich waste (dairy factory sludge, grease trap waste). The upgrade design achieved a 340% increase in biogas production capacity and enabled PNCC to generate additional revenue through gate fees to industrial users. Prior to the upgrade, more waste went to landfill.

Jurgen Thiele, Calibre Consulting’s Waste Value Recovery Leader said that this installation was the first of its kind in New Zealand.

“The key to increased capacity was separation of digester hydraulic and solids residence time of the existing digesters by internal recuperative thickening,” said Mr Thiele.

This principle has also been applied to the digester at Hamilton City Council’s Waste Water Treatment Plant and is now being considered by other councils in Australia and New Zealand.

The digester upgrade project was completed in 2012 and the produced biogas is used for cogeneration and electricity export into the grid (700kW generator).


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