Waste analyses (material composition)
Municipal waste analyses provide information on the material composition of waste and are essential when it comes to describing its technological, chemical or physical properties
The quantity and composition of mixed municipal waste in a disposal area are determined by a representative sample and a sorting analysis based on statistical collection and analysis methods. National or international regulations do not yet exist. Individual federal states, such as Brandenburg, Saxony or North Rhine-Westphalia, have developed guidelines for carrying out waste analyses. ARGUS has played a leading role in the guidelines in Brandenburg and Saxony and can refer to a large number of waste analyses.
Waste statistics / Data collection
Waste statistics provide information on the type, quantity and origin of waste in a given geographical area (at regional, national and European level) and at a given time interval.
The presentation may be based on the quantity or the installation. In contrast to waste balances, the description of the whole life cycle from generation to disposal is not given. The compilation of waste statistics outside official statistics is particularly useful where there is a need to deviate from the prescribed collection structures, where the depth of official statistics is insufficient, where timeliness and availability are high or where, as in the European area, no corresponding data collections have yet been established.
Waste statistics are compiled either as a census or as a representative sample using a data collection form for information media. Sample planning and question design are developed and carried out according to statistically validated methods. Our specialists carry out extensive plausibility checks and, in conjunction with our waste management know-how, guarantee surveys of the highest quality standard.
In waste management, the representative sampling of heterogeneous wastes and waste mixtures for the assessment of physical, chemical and technological properties has not yet been satisfactorily solved. Existing sampling methods for the sampling of granular bulk materials such as ores, coal or gravel are not applicable to heterogeneous mixtures of substances in waste management.
In the sampling of waste and waste mixtures, the structure and composition of the mixtures of substances is of essential importance. Structure and quality are determined by the degree of heterogeneity. A detailed sampling plan for representative sampling is developed according to the heterogeneity of a substance mixture. ARGUS and the TU-Berlin have developed a new sampling method that is largely independent of segregation processes, which are mainly caused by the properties of density, shape, surface area and bonding conditions of the substance particles. ARGUS is currently working on the further development of this sampling method to enable the standard application of this method in the near future.
Analytics (chemical-physical composition)
Knowledge of the chemical/physical properties of waste is a critical factor in the design and/or optimisation of waste treatment and disposal operations.
This applies both to process engineering processes and to the achievement of defined end product qualities (e.g. heavy metal content, biodegradability). While the determination of the chemical/physical parameters is carried out on the basis of standardised or standardised procedures, the real challenge is the representative sampling of the heterogeneous waste mixtures and the subsequent restriction of the samples to laboratory scale. ARGUS uses a multi-stage procedure to obtain laboratory samples. Representatively selected waste samples are first sorted manually according to groups of substances. The individual substance groups are separately pre-shredded. Partial samples are taken from the more homogeneous groups of substances and ground to <2mm. From the ground substance groups, a mass proportional mixed sample is weighed in, which can be analysed in the laboratory. We work together with an accredited testing laboratory to carry out the chemical/physical analyses.
In waste information systems, complex waste management issues are represented in database systems.
A database system makes it possible to store, manage and retrieve all relevant data or information. The term information covers all kinds of knowledge, from simple data to complex relationships that can be represented in the form of rules. At the municipal and state level, waste information systems are often part of a higher-level environmental information system and support administrative tasks as well as information duties. In companies, waste information systems are part of the overall environmental management and a suitable tool for reducing disposal costs and optimising operational processes. ARGUS creates waste information systems basically as a phase concept according to the BVB procedure model (special contractual conditions for the planning or creation of data processing programs, as a technical replacement for the Procurement Ordinance for Services VOL, Part B). Depending on the scope and complexity of the system's tasks and data, individual phases are summarised. In the planning phase, the rough and the technical detailed concept are worked out. In the implementation phase, all tasks from the IT detailed concept to commissioning are implemented.
Waste prognoses are required both for comprehensive planning, e.g. for waste management concepts at district or state level, and for specific planning of waste treatment plants.
Waste analyses are used to determine the actual state of the waste quantities and compositions. On the basis of verified data on the actual state, the waste quantity development is forecast for a fixed period of time. The prognosis period is based on the planned useful life. Waste prognoses thus reduce the risk of planning errors and are an important instrument for sustainable development in waste management. In waste management, ARGUS prognoses waste according to the prognosis scenario method. This combines the scientifically empirically based approach of pure prognosis with the scenario technique. In the scenario technique, a possible logical step sequence of events is described, which could lead from an initial situation (usually the present) to a possible state in the future. The relevant influencing factors and boundary conditions are determined and quantified. On this basis, three prognosis scenarios (minimum, maximum and zero variants) are developed.
Waste Management Concepts
Waste management concepts (WMC) are an indispensable basis for the entire decision-making, planning and construction process in municipal and operational waste management.
WMC records the type, quantity and area of origin of the waste currently generated (waste analyses and waste balances) and calculates the quantities of waste to be expected in the future (waste forecasts). Measures for the prevention, recovery and treatment of non-recyclable waste are derived from the objectives for prevention and recovery and the quantity structure and a draft resolution is prepared. For municipal waste-to-energy plants, safe disposal and the environmental compatibility of the operated plants play an important role. The implementation of waste management concepts takes place in 3 steps. In the first step, the actual state is recorded. This includes the legal framework, the type, quantity, composition and area of origin of the waste, the disposal logistics, the settlement and economic structure of the disposal area. In the second step, the waste quantity development is defined in a waste forecast. The third step of the AWK is the conceptual part, in which the desired waste management target state is designed and various variants for achieving the target state are discussed. Based on this, the decision for the optimal variant is finally made.
Waste balances provide information on the types and quantities of waste generated or produced in a local authority or establishment. The quantity flows are assigned to disposal channels, treatment steps, and disposal facilities.
All waste quantities are represented from generation to transfer, recovery, or disposal. Waste balances form the basis for the planning and evaluation of waste management measures in municipalities and companies. The preparation of a waste balance comprises the conception and development of a data entry form, data entry or the establishment of regular data entry, plausibility checks and the evaluation or establishment of evaluation routines. The use of waste balance programmes for recording, plausibility checks and evaluation is recommended for the regular performance of waste balance sheets. In this way, waste balances can be carried out safely, conveniently and in compliance with the guidelines. ARGUS offers both support in the preparation of waste balances and a comprehensive IT solution for the preparation of waste balances on your own.
Quality assurance accompanies the entire preparation and manufacturing process. In the design phase, the relevant material flows, the parameters to be investigated and the quality targets are defined.