High pressure boilers make sludge incineration plant virtually energy-neutral

Paul Boughton

NV Slibverwerking Noord-Brabant (SNB) in Moerdijk, The Netherlands, has officially began operations using two boilers provided by NEM and a Siemens steam turbine.

The new plant will immediately make the largest sewage sludge incineration plant in Europe virtually energy-neutral; a status unique in the industry.

The amount of electricity generated will be enough to power 7,000 to 8,000 households. NEM Energy BV is the only Dutch manufacturer of steam generators for use in power stations and industry.

The two boilers generate steam from residual heat released when the sludge is incinerated. This steam drives a turbine that in turn generates enough electricity to supply almost all of SNB’s needs. Moreover, the plant also produces low-pressure steam that is used for pre-drying the sludge and for reclaiming raw materials.

After a year’s preparation, technicians began assembling the boilers at the SNB facility in September 2014. That required the existing installation to be partially shut down twice during the process.

Marcel Lefferts, Director of SNB: “You could compare it to open-heart surgery. NEM was able to remove two existing boilers one after the other and replace them with the new boilers while the plant remained operational. That meant that the project had to be completed as quickly as possible, and NEM proved that they were up to the challenge.”

With the new boilers, SNB will increase its production of green energy by a factor of nine. That will not only save SNB and its shareholders money, it will also benefit the environment, which will contribute to abiding by the agreements that the shareholding water boards made in the Climate Accords. One of these agreements was to cut energy consumption by 30% between 2005 and 2020. 

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