Allied Glass Containers has recently completed a major investment programme at its Knottingley, UK site, which involved a complete melter and forehearth rebuild.
The project, which started in January 2012 has resulted in a larger furnace with increased production capacity and improved environmental performance. The furnace is larger and deeper with provision for electric and oxy-fuel boosting.
The project was managed by Allied’s own in-house Engineering Project Management team. After a 12-month tendering process, the team sourced European refractory materials for the build and selected technologies from Europe’s leading equipment suppliers such as Sorg, ACSI and STG.
A sealed doghouse and batch charger, a low-NOx combustion system, integrated waste gas oxygen control, a new PLC control system and new gas metering and control skids are some of the investments designed to give better process control for improved production performance.
In addition to incorporating these technologies, the new furnace has significantly improved insulation and a re-designed combustion space. These changes deliver industry best practice for energy efficiency and NOx limits.
Philip Morris, Allied’s Sales and Marketing Director says: “This strategic investment has been very carefully planned to ensure that we have the ability to respond to the future needs of our customer base. With a 12 year life, the furnace has been designed to ensure we continually improve product quality and efficiency, whilst increasing our production capability.”
The furnace will feed five IS machines, including one fed by a colouring forehearth. This production line has already received a three million pound upgrade earlier in 2012, when the forehearth capacity was significantly increased and a new IS machine and inspection line were installed.
Technical Director John Naughton said: “Our project team had a brief of increasing melting capacity, improving process control, reducing energy consumption and meeting the latest environmental performance standards. By working with Europe’s leading suppliers and investing in the best new technology we have been able to design a furnace and forehearth system that should meet all of these objectives and enable Allied Glass to continue to grow.”