Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


An EEC funded project, aimed at energy saving and entitled: "The concentration of waste cutting oil emulsions from metal machining activities by solar energy", has been conceived to retrieve fuel oil from waste emulsions produced by the LMI Fornaci di Barga works. The project was divided into 5 separate phases: planning, purchasing of materials, installation, starting up and a further period of trial to gather operational data. 12 months were necessary to explete the first 4 phases and a further 12 months for the last phase. The working principle can be thus outlined: a battery of 80 SMI-SOL solar collectors supplies energy to a heat exchanger which increases the temperature of previously stockpiled waste emulsions. The water content of the emulsion is evaporated by means of an evaporating tower; the emulsion is stored in a tank and then drawn off for use as fuel. The plant's efficiency has been calculated by measuring solar input and the quantities of both evaporated water and reclaimed oil. The values obtained range from 9.3 kg/m**2 in December to 74.6 kg/m**2 in September, with a total system efficiency of between 6.3% and 37.1%. Process efficiency may be improved both by the use of insulating materials to reduce leaks and by perfecting the volumes involved. The reliability can also be improved by simplifying the control systems. The operational trials demonstrated that the annual productivity was much lower than the original estimate. In order to render the plant economically feasible, it was decided to use a natural gas fired boiler as a supplementary source of energy in the absence of sunlight (day and night). The boiler has been planned to achieve an annual processing capacity of 400,000 kg of emulsion. The modification will be completed by March 1985.

Additional information

Bibliographic Reference: EUR 9905 EN/IT (1985) MF, 92 P., BFR 150, BLOW-UP COPY BFR 460, EUROFFICE, LUXEMBOURG, POB 1003
Availability: Can be ordered online
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