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Improvement in Operating and Maintenance Cost With a Fabric Filter Conversion Using Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) Membrane Filter Media

[+] Author Affiliations
John Darrow

W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc., Elkton, MD

Paul Grego

Wheelabrator Technologies, Inc., Pompano Beach, FL

Brenda Austin

Midwesco Filter Resources, Inc., Winchester, VA

Paper No. NAWTEC12-2224, pp. 199-204; 6 pages
  • 12th Annual North American Waste-to-Energy Conference
  • 12th Annual North American Waste-to-Energy Conference
  • Savannah, Georgia, USA, May 17–19, 2004
  • Conference Sponsors: Solid Waste Processing Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-3736-X
  • Copyright © 2004 by ASME


Wheelabrator Technologies is owner and operator of the 2250 ton per day North Broward County, Florida, facility. The plant consists of three lines rated at 750 tons/day. Each line is equipped with a spray dryer absorber/fabric filter. The original fabric filter design was a shake-deflate baghouse with ten compartments of 180 bags each. The typical bag life was one year with the shake-deflate baghouse using standard woven fiberglass bags. Frequent bag failures led to high operating and maintenance cost for the system. The initial upgrade was a conversion from a shake-deflate baghouse to a reverse-air baghouse with sonic horns. The resultant bag life was improved to two years, which represented a significant reduction in maintenance cost. The latest upgrade for the baghouse system was the installation of PTFE membrane/fiberglass filter bags. The change in the filter media resulted in a dramatic improvement in performance. The baghouse cleaning frequency dropped from 360 cycles per day to approximately 50 cycles per day. The average differential pressure across the baghouse system also dropped by 6 in. w. g. The membrane filter bags have achieved over two years life to date and have significantly reduced operating and maintenance costs associated with the baghouse. This paper will detail the steps taken in the conversion from the original shake-deflate design using standard filter bags to the reverse-air with sonic horns using membrane bags. An analysis of the cost of the upgrades and subsequent savings for each step will be included.

Copyright © 2004 by ASME



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