Combustion Characteristics of Municipal Solid Waste Bales
Combustion behaviour of municipal solid waste bales is a rarely studied topic hitherto. However, there is dire need to devote research on the topic because baling as a storage methodology is getting popular among waste management companies and fire episodes in such storage sites can have devastating economic, environmental and social implications. In this study, thickness of low density polyethylene (LDPE) plastic sheets (12 layers, 6 layers and no layer) and type of ignition source (pilot ignition, thermal radiation) were investigated to see their effect on combustion behaviour of bales. In total eleven tests with a single bale in each test were performed. It has been found that the bales not wrapped with LDPE plastic sheets may pose higher hazards for adjacently stored material to catch fire as the value of maximum heat release rate observed for them was higher than those wrapped with LDPE plastic sheets. Furthermore, it has been found that LDPE plastic wrapping do not contribute significantly to the combustion of bales when exposed only to thermal radiation from an adjacent fire. However, it plays a significant role in ignition of bales in case exposed to a pilot flame ignition source. Molten LDPE plastic trapped between the adjacently stored bales was found to be another important factor influencing the combustion of bales.
KeywordsBale storage Municipal solid waste Temporary storage Combustion Fire Safe storage Risk of fires Heat flux
The authors gratefully acknowledge VINNOVA which has made the test financially possible as a part of the project “Integrated Waste Management Technology for Effective Biogas Production” and in particular Dr. Ciro Vasquez for his assistance in the main project. Furthermore, Peter Svensson, Flexus Balasystem AB, in his support in the bailing process and Marika Hogland, LundaHydro AB and Linnaeus University, for her help on site in the bailing and planning of incineration test. Finally SP for opening their laboratory and technicians at SP making necessary measurement equipment available for the incineration test.
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