Hitachi supports ‘urban mining’ operation

By Steve Ducker28 February 2018

A fleet of Hitachi wheeled loaders and excavators is providing crucial support to Heros Sluiskil (Heros), a facility in the Netherlands that extracts valuable raw materials from incinerated industrial waste for reuse.

Hitachi web

Hitachi has supplied machines to Heros since 2011

Heros has been a Hitachi customer since 2011 and now has a fleet of 10 machines comprsing a ZX350LC-6 excavator and nine ZW-6 wheeled loaders.

During its “urban mining” process, Heros extracts ferrous materials such as iron, and non-ferrous metals such as aluminium and copper, from incinerated bottom ash. The remaining material forms the basis for high-quality secondary aggregates, used for example in road construction or concrete products.

On the 45 ha (111 acre) site, the Hitachi machines are used to carry out a variety of tasks. The ZX350LC-6 medium excavator is used to open the stockpiles of incinerated bottom ash, which can be stored on site for three to six weeks. One of the ZW310 wheeled loaders takes material from the pile and transports it to the feeder of the separation and processing equipment.

A ZW250-6 works in another section, where scrap metal is separated, while the company’s largest wheeled loader, a ZW370-6, is used to unload material from ships that dock in the adjacent canal. The smallest Hitachi wheeled loader on site, the ZW180-6, works for 16 hours a day in the 2,700 sq m (29,000 sq ft) non-ferrous upgrading facility.

“We chose the Hitachi ZW180-6 to work inside the plant, as it’s easy to manoeuvre and able to reach the height of the feeder,” said Peter David, head of machines and planning at Heros.

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