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Advances in the utilization of waste materials and alternative sources of energy in clay brick making: A South Tyrolean case study investigating environmental and financial impacts

MOEDINGER, Fritz (2010) Advances in the utilization of waste materials and alternative sources of energy in clay brick making: A South Tyrolean case study investigating environmental and financial impacts. Doctoral thesis, Staffordshire University.

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The background to this research program was the need to investigate novel technologies and their application to fired ceramic processes that would facilitate the return to profitability for a small size brick maker. The company, Gasser Brick Company. Ziegel Gasser Mattoni GmbH S.r.l., in Natz-Schabs (Naz-Sciaves) in the north of Italy, is a relatively small manufacturer producing < 20,000 metric tons of brick per year. In this thesis the economic, environmental and social advantages consequent to a complete review of the approach to the company’s manufacture of cored clay bricks are discussed, including energy saving measures and the use of novel fuel and clay body supplements. A number of wide ranging novel technical modifications to the production processes of the Gasser Brick company have been tested, evaluated, reviewed, compared, and critically evaluated. The approach includes the utilization of a substantial percentage of various wastes as part-substitution of, or as an addition to, quarried raw materials and also the use of renewable and alternative fuels as a substitute for fossil fuels. A number of these modifications have resulted in beneficial changes to the product and the efficiency of the production process and considerably reduced the environmental footprint of the operation. Process modifications and the technological improvements to production equipment are explained and discussed along with detailed information about the measures that enabled the Gasser Brick company to return the profitability. The modifications resulted in a substantial increase of income. Revenues from waste gate fees are about 30% of the total turnover of the company. Costs for thermal energy dropped by 2/3: A ton of boiler oil commanded a price of 220 - 245 €/ton versus the around 80 €/ton of rendering fat.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: F100 Chemistry
Faculty: PhD
Depositing User: Louise YARWOOD
Date Deposited: 02 Apr 2014 09:42
Last Modified: 02 Apr 2014 09:42
URI: http://eprints.staffs.ac.uk/id/eprint/1874

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