Recycling Technologies, a manufacturer of energy-from-waste equipment capable of generating electricity from mixed plastic waste, has opened their first design, testing and manufacturing plant at the South Marston Industrial Estate.
The company was spun out of the University of Warwick in 2011, with assistance from Warwick Ventures Ltd, the university’s research commercialisation company.
The business has come to the town in response to the Forward Swindon’s campaign to promote the town as a good place to set up business. It’s also close to managing director Adrian Griffiths’ home in Purton.
At South Marston Recycling Technologies will develop and manufacture the WarwickFBR which is designed to produce heat and electricity from plastic – normally destined for landfill – using a process called Pyrolysis. The mixed plastics are transformed into energy rich gas, filtered to remove impurities and condensed to output a wax like fuel. This fuel can then be used in a suitable engine and generator in place of – for example – diesel.
Unveiling a plaque marking the arrival of Recycling Technologies in Swindon, North Swindon MP Justin Tomlinson said: "I’m always keen to support fledgling new businesses and I was delighted to be asked to official open Recycling Technologies.
"Yet again Swindon has been chosen as the location for a new, exciting business, helping to both provide new employment opportunities and to be part of a growing, cutting edge technology.
"Here in Swindon we have already achieved an impressive 50 per cent rate of kerbside recycling and this technology will help sustainably deal with much of the remaining waste that we as a society currently send to landfill. The waste to energy market is clearly going to be an important part of our energy supply mix and there is a real opportunity for Swindon to be at the heart of this."
Although Justin is still an ordinary MP, the company has elevated him to ministerial status by referring to him as the Right Honourable Justin Tomlinson on the plaque. A prescient move perhaps. Justin is pictured left with MD Adrian Griffiths.
According to the waste giant Viridor, 85 per cent of plastic in the UK still goes into landfill. Recycling Technologies say that its technology can eliminate this waste of a natural product by turning it instead into electricity and heat.
There are many environmental benefits to this process, including enabling a reduction in the transportation of bailed plastics, a reduction in landfill, and the use of waste to create electricity rather than using virgin fossil fuels. The WarwickFBRTM system is designed to fit into a 40 tonne shipping container and will produce enough fuel to generate up to 3 Megawatts of electricity and a similar amount of heat.
At the opening of the Recycling Technologies unit on Monday 8 April MD Adrian Griffiths said: "There are an enormous numbers of companies that buy mixed plastics and try to sort it out to achieve a higher price. In fact it’s probably not very often worth trying to have people sort out the plastic waste. It’s of more value if it’s converted to energy."
The firm currently has five staff and aims to grow to 12 by the end of the year, and employ between 30 to 40 within two years.
Recycling Technologies has a strong team and a wide range of advisors including Peter Jones OBE, previously of waste management specialists Biffa, as well as the backing and research credentials of the Universities of Warwick and Birmingham. It is set to create a new market for post-consumer plastics waste.
Find out more at recyclingtechnologies.co.uk
The Swindon campaign and business investment service was set up by Forward Swindon in March 2012 and has made a strong impact. In the last year there has been a threefold increase in inward investment enquiries compared to the previous year.
North Swindon MP Justin Tomlinson, rear right, with from left, company chairman Martin Lusby, finance director David Ashcroft, MD Adrian Griffiths, board advisor Peter Jones OBE, Arthur Op Den Brouw, marketing and communications, and Kevin Marks of Warwick Ventures. Photo: Richard Wintle www.calyxpix.com