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A Success Story: How Aircrete Europe helps Forterra with creating flexible PFA production facilities


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Aircrete Europe has been selected by Forterra Building Products, one of UK’s leading building materials groups, as its technology partner to convert its existing AAC facilities at Hams Hall and Newbury into flexible Pulverised Fuel Ash (PFA) production facilities. The first project, Hams Hall, was successfully implemented in June 2018 and the second project, Newbury, is planned to be completed in September 2019. Both projects empower Forterra with flexible PFA production facilities to optimally service the fast-growing UK AAC market.

In the United Kingdom, PFA is a fundamental ingredient in AAC blocks production. Dry PFA is a by-product of coal-fired electricity generation. The decline in this form of power generation has led to shortages of PFA. Forterra, one of the UK`s leading building materials group, started a multi-faceted solution approach addressing the dwindling dry PFA sources. Modifying plants to use conditioned ‘wet’ PFA as well as dry PFA is a major initiative to enable a long-term sustainable solution.

Forterra has chosen Aircrete Europe as their technology partner to convert the existing AAC facilities at Hams Hall and Newbury. George Stewart, the Operations Director at Forterra further explains the project details: “Given a remarkable performance of Aircrete Europe to complete this project (at Hams Hall) successfully within the budgets and implement within the very short timeframe, it was logic that we engaged Aircrete also to design and implement this solution for our project at our Newbury location.”

The Wet Front End Solution from Aircrete Europe

Aircrete designed and implemented a fully customized solution named as the Wet Front End Solution. This solution allows the operating facilities to handle the conditioned ‘wet’ PFA and decrease reliance on the dry PFA as the raw material. The main principle here is that the ‘wet’ PFA is treated and made into a slurry that is fed into the mix for AAC production.

Figure 07

A Simplified Visualization of the Wet Front End Solution at Forterra


With this newly implemented solution, Forterra has become significantly more independent towards its raw materials supply and is now geared to fully capitalize on the abundant growth opportunities in the UK.

For the full article including technical details, please refer to the article published in AAC Worldwide, Vol. 3, 2019 “Forterra creates flexible PFA production facilities in the UK”

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