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Ozzano Emilia composting plant

Via C Fornacetta 3, Ozzano Emilia (BO)

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The Ozzano plant in Emilia is devoted to the treatment of lignocellulose waste deriving from the maintenance of public and private gardens and parks and to waste reclamation (composted green soil improver).

Page updated 26 August 2015

 
    Green line treatment capacity
    28,000 tonnes/year
    Types of waste accepted
    Green waste generated by the maintenance of public and private gardens and parks

    Green waste is weighed at the plant before being accepted, and then taken to a storage area.
    The first operation that must be carried out before the composting process can begin is grinding.
    A suitable machine is used to pulp the product in order to increase the surface area available for attacking by bacterial flora.
    The product thus obtained is then placed in piles to mature in a storage area, where it will remain for around 24 weeks.
    The temperature of the piles is checked daily, providing an indication of the efficiency of the composting action. A temperature of between 55 and 73C indicates good "composting bacteria" action, while lower temperatures indicate poor bacterial action. The possible causes of this are:
    1 - Low humidity of the pile (optimal humidity is between 45 and 55%). The quantity of water inside the mass is regulated by wetting the material with rainwater recovered from the composting area.
    2 - Anoxic environment of the composting mass (the percentage of oxygen inside the mass should be more than 6%). The composting mass receives oxygen when it is turned.
    Action is also taken if the temperature exceeds 73C, at which point the piles are turned because too high a temperature causes the emission of significant quantities of CO 2, resulting in a final compost with a poor percentage of organic matter.
    The final stage consists of refinement, achieved with the assistance of a rotating screen (8 mm and 6 mm grid).

    At this stage, the mature product is split into two flows:

    • oversieve fraction;
    • finished product.

    The oversieve fraction is put back into the treatment cycle, because its high content of bacterial mass accelerates the composting process.

    The finished product, defined by current legislation as "composted green soil improver", is sold loose or packaged and sold to nursery gardening businesses.
    Throughout the composting process, the temperatures of the different pile sectors are checked every day using suitable probes.

    Waste reclamation line
    The production line for fertilisers and soils, called the "Waste Reclamation Line", is located in the Ozzano Emilia plant, in a rectangular industrial building measuring 25.8 x 60.8m, with a surface area of 1,568 m2 and a working height of 8 m. This building has a metal structure and comprises a traditional mixing, pelletising and packaging plant for fertilisers and soils.
    The raw materials used in this production line are selected products, guaranteed by the certified traceability system, as provided for by the special legislation on fertilisers, Legislative Decree 217/2006.
    The finished products leaving the production section may be packaged in polythene bags of various sizes before being placed on pallets, which are then sealed with plastic film around the sides and a rain-proof hood, or else in big-bags, or even loose, although this is limited to soil and soil improvers.

    Soil production line
    This is a line used for the feeding and mixing of materials, followed by packaging in bags or big-bags.

    Fertiliser production line
    This line is capable of producing fertilisers in pellet form.
    Like the soil production line, the raw materials are picked from the storage areas using tractor loaders and put into hoppers above loading cells, where they are processed automatically as described above.
    The material is then transported on a conveyor belt to a plenum chamber, the purpose of which is to regulate the flow of material to be fed to the two presses and keep it constant.
    The pelleted material is transported by another conveyor belt from the two presses, each of which has a capacity of approximately 3 tonnes/hour, to the driers.
    The pellet drying operation is needed because if the material were to be packaged with excessive humidity, mould could grow on the surface of the packed pellets, thus compromising the saleability of the product.

    Packaging line
    The packaging line is equipped with two independent reel packaging plants, an automatic pallet feeder, a winder and a product characterisation system.
    Two conveyor belts feed the hoppers of the two weighing/bagging machines, which are capable of packaging in bags of 5, 10, 20, 50 and 80 litres (up to 30 kg in weight), with a capacity of 300 bags/hour for soils on one line and 500 bags/hour for fertiliser pellets on the other.
    This line is equipped with a special suction and vacuum-maintenance system, with its own sleeve filter. The film wrap is fed automatically by a reel of weldable polyethylene.

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