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GCI TECH NOTES©


Volume 18, Number 1           A Gossman Consulting, Inc. Publication       February 2013


Cement Kiln Engineered Fuel Patents and Sharps PELLA-DRX™ 

by

David Gossman

Introduction

logo and pellet photo

Sharps Compliance, Inc. has created a patented process to convert medical waste into a safe and useful fuel and raw material, PELLA-DRX™. PELLA-DRX™ is the end product of Waste Conversion Process™ (WCP), a stringent method that renders the origin of the product indistinguishable while removing associated hazards from the medical waste. The WCP processes medical waste that is traditionally incinerated or autoclaved and sent to landfills, and repurposes it into a resource used to make new products applicable to a wide range of energy intensive industries including cement kilns.

PELLA-DRX™ is made of shredded and sterilized sharps and medical waste which has been quality-checked and compressed into clean, safe and compact PELLA-DRX™ pellets. The Waste Conversion Process™ renders the medical waste unidentifiable, as sterile as sterile surgical instruments, and ready for use in energy intensive industries for repurposing. This same process can be used to transform a variety of  other waste materials into a densified fuel product often referred to as Engineered Fuel. The fuel has a much higher bulk density than the waste it comes from which makes transportation economical. Properly prepared the fuel is also waterproof  which makes handling outside much easier than many other pellet fuels that absorb water and turn into mush if out in the rain.

Treatment vs disposal

Autoclaved based treatment of medical waste renders such waste far cleaner than most other waste materials yet most of this waste is currently restricted to landfill or incineration disposal and often at higher tipping prices than other solid waste solely because of its origins - not because of its treated properties. When this waste, either by itself or mixed with other solid wastes as described in the above referenced patents, is processed via shredding, pelletizing and/or other technologies it can become a valuable fuel product with heat content and combustion characteristics similar to high grade coals.

Benefits for cement kilns

Cement kilns are some of the largest consumers of fuel resources in the world. In a growing trend since 1980 cement kilns have also become the method of choice for recovering the fuel value from many wastes. Because the ash in waste fuels becomes part of the cement product in a cement kiln, this system is one of the very few that actually consumes all of the waste material - both organic and inorganic turning all of the waste into product - no ash, no change in emissions and no impact on product quality when properly quality controlled and managed. Engineered fuels are the latest step in the process that started over 30 years ago and present the real potential for using a wider variety of waste materials, including treated medical wastes, to consume waste materials instead of coal and other natural resource based fuels in the manufacture of Portland cement. The cost savings when compared with traditional fuels can be enormous. Further, the use of engineered fuels can significantly reduce GHG emissions since that portion of the fuel that is paper based materials is not considered to contribute to GHG emissions. Engineered fuels, especially those that are pelletized, do not trigger CISWI MACT regulations and meet EPA definitions for "sufficiently processed".

Benefits for medical waste producers and treatment facilities

There is a growing realization on the part of health care providers that waste produced in the process of providing health care services can and should be recycled and reused if at all possible instead of adding to the growing landfill burden. The simplest process for making fuel use of these health care wastes and unused products is to incorporate them into engineered fuels going to cement kilns. Because the small amount of metals (such as needles) and inorganic materials found in these wastes do not need to be separated the cost savings during processing the wastes can be significant. By shredding and pelletizing the materials to make an engineered fuel bulk density is increased and the materials are more cost effectively transported. The pelletizing process can also reduce dust and potential emissions from the process of handling and transporting these materials. Further, with proper controls the engineered fuel is also rendered water proof allowing outdoor storage in many locations.

Benefits for waste management companies, recyclers and engineered fuel manufacturers.

Waste management companies now have the option to incorporate health care related wastes and unused products into an outgoing product instead of landfilling these heat content bearing wastes. It becomes relatively simple to incorporate materials into the engineered fuel manufacturing process and different points in the process based on the amount of preprocessing that has occurred prior to receipt. For example a large hospital with their own autoclaves and shredders produce a material that can be fed into the process directly prior to the pelletizer or a secondary fine shredder. Less processed materials can fed to an earlier step in the process. Engineered fuel manufactures have the potential to incorporate a higher revenue stream into their process without negatively impacting their end product. Indeed the relatively high level of plastics and other high heat content materials can improve the quality of the produced engineered fuels.

Conclusion

The PELLA-DRX™ Waste Conversion Process™ is now available for licensing to waste management companies, medical waste processors and end users such as cement kilns. Gossman Consulting, Inc., with David Gossman as one of the inventors of this technology, has been contracted by Sharps Compliance, Inc. to work with potential users to license and expand the use of  these patents to the benefit of waste producers, processors, engineered fuel users and the environment. Please call Dave at 563-652-2822 or send an email to dgossman@gcisolutions.com and find out how your company can profitably benefit from the licensing of these technologies.

Patent Number 8100989 Method and system of making a burnable fuel


Inventors: Burton J. Kunik, James C. Berns

ABSTRACT

Methods and systems are disclosed for direct conversion of a used healthcare material into a burnable fuel and to burnable fuels derived therefrom

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Embodiments of this invention provide methods for converting a used healthcare material including a complex mixture of components including pulp materials, polymer materials, metal materials, and/or other material such as ceramic materials, ash materials, etc. directly into a burnable fuel, Without the need for component separation.

Embodiments of this invention provide systems for converting a used healthcare material including the complex mixture of components materials directly into a burnable fuel, Without the need for component separation.

Embodiments of this invention provide burnable fuels derived from methods and systems of this invention.

Patent Number 8163045 Method and system of making a burnable fuel


Inventors: Burton J. Kunik, James C. Berns, David G. Gossman

ABSTRACT

Methods and systems are disclosed for direct conversion of a used or waste material into a burnable fuel and to burnable fuels derived therefrom

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Embodiments of this invention provide methods for converting one or a plurality of used or Waste source materials, each material including a complex mixture of components including pulp materials, fiber materials, fabric materials, plastic or polymer materials, metals or metal containing materials, ceramic materials, ceramic containing materials, bio-hazardous materials, ash materials, and/or other Waste materials directly into a burnable fuel, Without the need for exhaustive component separation. The burnable fuel can also optionally include a solid fuel and/or liquid fuel, that may be added into the Waste materials at any point in the processing. The burnable fuel can also optionally include virgin pulp materials, virgin fiber materials, virgin polymer materials, virgin ceramic materials and/ or other virgin materials or mixtures or combinations thereof. The burnable fuel can also optionally include unused pulp materials, unused fiber materials, unused polymer materials, unused ceramic materials and/or other unused materials or mixtures or combinations thereof. The methods can also include shaping the burnable fuel into a compact shaped burnable fuel.

Embodiments of this invention provide systems for converting one or a plurality of used or Waste materials, each material including a complex mixture of components including pulp materials, fiber materials, fabric materials, plastic or polymer materials, metals or metal containing materials, ceramic materials, ceramic containing materials, bio-hazardous materials, ash materials, and/or other Waste materials directly into a burnable fuel, Without the need for exhaustive component separation. The burnable fuel can also optionally include a solid fuel and/or liquid fuel. The burnable fuel can also optionally include virgin pulp materials, virgin fiber materials, virgin polymer materials, virgin ceramic materials and/or other virgin materials or mixtures or combinations thereof. The burnable fuel can also optionally include unused pulp materials, unused fiber materials, unused polymer materials, unused ceramic materials and/ or other unused materials or mixtures or combinations thereof. The systems can also include a shaping subsystem for shaping the burnable fuel into a compact shaped burnable fuel. The system can also include a subsystem for combusting the burnable fuel and converting a portion of the resulting thermal energy into a usable form of energy or into a useful product.

Embodiments of this invention provide burnable fuels derived from methods and systems of this invention.

Patent Number 8268073 System and method for making cement and cement derived therefrom

Inventors: Burton J. Kunik, James C. Berns, David G. Gossman

ABSTRACT 

Integrated cement production systems and methods implementing the systems are disclosed, where the integrated cement production systems include a burnable fuel supply subsystem, a cement raw material supply subsystem, a kiln subsystem and a cement clinker composition storage subsystem. The burnable fuel supply subsystem is adapted to receive one or a plurality of used and/or unused healthcare materials. The burnable fuel supply subsystem can feed the materials directly into the kiln subsystem, can convert the materials into different form and feed the different form to the kiln subsystem or feed a combination of the materials, different forms and optionally conventional fuels to the kiln subsystem.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Embodiments of this invention relate to systems for preparing cement including a cement raw material supply and conditioning subsystem, a burnable fuel supply subsystem, a kiln subsystem, and a cement storage and distribution subsystem. The burnable fuel supply subsystem is adapted to receive healthcare materials (used and/or unused) to produce an input burnable fuel having a desired component makeup. The burnable fuel supply subsystem may also be adapted to pre-process all or a portion of the healthcare materials (used and/or unused) and/or the input burnable fuel to produce a pre-processed burnable fuel. The burnable fuel supply subsystem may also be adapted to size or size and partially or completely homogenize all or a portion of the initial burnable fuel and/or the pre-processed burnable fuel to form a composite burnable fuel comprising a particulate burnable fuel component and optionally the input burnable fuel and/or the pre-processed burnable fuel. The burnable fuel supply subsystem may also be adapted to shape all or a portion of the particulate burnable fuel into a compact shape to form a shaped burnable fuel. The input burnable fuel, the pre-processed burnable fuel, the particulate burnable fuel and/or the shaped burnable fuel are then supplied to the kiln subsystem as a sole fuel or a component fuel. The burnable fuel supply subsystem can also include sources of conventional gas, liquid or solid fuels such as coal, coke, natural gas, liquid hydrocarbons or other conventional fuels and include supply components for supplying the conventional fuels to the kiln subsystem.

Embodiments of this invention relate to methods for making cement including supplying a cement raw material to a kiln subsystem, where all or a portion of the cement raw material is conditioned prior to introducing the raw cement material it to the kiln subsystem. The methods also include forming an input burnable fuel from one or a plurality of healthcare materials (used and/or unused) in a burnable fuel subsystem. The methods also include supplying the input burnable fuel and optionally a conventional fuel to the kiln subsystem. The methods also include heating and sintering the cement raw material and the fuel ash into a cement clinker composition in the kiln subsystem using the fuel supplied to the kiln subsystem by the burnable fuel subsystem. The methods can also include conditioning all or a portion of the cement raw material to form a conditioned raw material, all of which is supplied to the kiln subsystem to produce the cement clinker composition. The methods can also include pre-processing all or a portion of the input burnable fuel to form a pre-processed burnable fuel. The methods can also include sizing all or a portion of the input burnable fuel and/or the pre-processed burnable fuel in a sizing or sizing and partially or completely homogenizing subsystem to form a particulate burnable fuel. The methods can also include shaping all or a portion of the particulate burnable fuel into a shaped burnable fuel. The methods can also include containerizing the particulate burnable fuel and/or the shaped burnable fuel prior to supplying the fuel to the kiln subsystem. The methods also include supplying a burnable fuel to the kiln subsystem, where the burnable fuel comprises the input burnable fuel, the pre-processed burnable fuel, the particulate burnable fuel, the shaped burnable fuel, the containerized particulate burnable fuel and/or containerized shaped burnable fuel, in any mixture or combination, and where the burning of the mixture is adapted to supply sufficient heat for proper kiln operation and where the resulting ash contributes advantageously to the resulting cement clinker composition.

Embodiments of this invention relate to systems and methods for making cement and to cement compositions derived therefrom, where the system includes a raw material supply and conditioning subsystem, a burnable fuel supply subsystem, a kiln subsystem, and a cement storage and distribution subsystem. The burnable fuel supply subsystem takes in one or a plurality of healthcare materials (used and/or unused) to form an input burnable fuel. The burnable fuel supply subsystem optionally pre-processes all or a portion of the input burnable fuel to form a pre-processed burnable fuel. The burnable fuel supply subsystem optionally sizes or sizes and partially or completely homogenizes all or a portion of the input burnable fuel or the pre-processed burnable fuel to form a particulate burnable fuel. The burnable fuel supply subsystem optionally shapes the all or a portion of the particulate burnable fuel into a shaped burnable fuel. In certain embodiments, the burnable fuel supply subsystem supplies a mixture of the burnable fuels to the kiln subsystem, where the mixture can be the input burnable fuel, the pre-processed burnable fuel, the particulate burnable fuel, the shaped burnable fuel, the containerized particulate burnable fuel, and/or the containerized shaped material, and optionally one or more tradition fuels.