The SEFA Group Inc. recently opened a stand-alone Staged Turbulent Air Reactor (STAR) facility in Georgetown, S.C., at the Santee Cooper Winyah Generation Station. The facility will remove coal ash from ponds surrounding the station, which represents the first time ponded material has been reclaimed to make a high specification grade fly ash for use as a concrete additive.
The STAR process is a thermal beneficiation system, which treats coal ash in a manner that lowers the content of residual carbon, improving its performance for use in concrete, and provides additional performance attributes in products in the mineral, chemical, rubber, and plastics industries. The purified mineral matter that is being produced at Winyah is 100 percent inorganic and meets ASTM C-618 “Standard Specification for Coal Fly Ash and Raw or Calcined Natural Pozzolan for Use in Concrete.”
“Santee Cooper had a pond ash issue they needed to resolve,” said Jimmy Knowles, Vice President of Market Development and Research for SEFA. “Santee Cooper originally anticipated relocating the material to a landfill. Fortunately, with STAR technology, SEFA was able to provide a solution which is both cost-effective and provides for beneficial reuse of the material.”
Presently in the industry, most coal ash is placed in lined and monitored landfills to prevent toxins from seeping into the surrounding environment. Using STAR technology, previously disposed coal ash is now being recycled out of older, unlined ponds and used in concrete and other products. The Winyah facility can process 500,000 tons of ponded coal ash and produce around 350,000 product tons annually.
The Winyah facility joins existing STAR plants in Columbia, S.C., and Newburg, M.D.
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