Aluminum recycling is particularly important for the Italian economy, which has historically been lacking in raw materials. In fact, as much as 90% of the aluminum produced in the country comes from recycling, and is identical to the product obtained from the original ore.
Thus, in line with current practice elsewhere in the world, it is no coincidence that Italy has installed a great number of TOMRA´s X-ray Transmission X-TRACT units which facilitate the sorting and processing of aluminum for recycling.
The Centro Rottami Srl of Cisterna di Latina is a leading Italian recycling center, and so it was natural for this Lazio company to put their trust in TOMRA Sorting Recycling’s cutting-edge technology. Launched in 1985 to meet the needs of the ferrous and non-ferrous metal (aluminum) recovery sector, Centro Rottami then relocated to an 80,000-square-meter plot in the industrial area of Cisterna di Latina in 1994. Each month, Centro Rottami processes about 300-500 tons of aluminum, 4,000 tons of scrap metal, 300 tons of non-ferrous scrap metal, 2,000 tons of tires and 200 tons of lead batteries.
Owned by the Del Prete family, this dynamic and innovative company operates at the cutting edge of the market and is fully conversant with emerging trends. Commenting on the company’s business aspirations, Gennaro Del Prete says: “We strongly believe in the circular economy. Therefore, our main goal is to implement the total recovery of all waste materials entering our establishment.”
This “zero waste” goal is entirely in sympathy with the latest green strategies, and Del Prete explains what this means in terms of the processing cycle: “Aluminum sorting of the incoming waste stream occurs in the final phase of a complex treatment process which we have designed and implemented using some of our own patented machines, together with two TOMRA units, in order to reduce lost materials to the absolute minimum.”
More specifically, this procedure uses a TOMRA FINDER, purchased in 2008, and a latest generation X-TRACT, purchased in 2016 and recently put into operation. Engineer Davide Cattaneo of Orion, TOMRA Sorting’s Italian agent, explains: “At Centro Rottami, the material is processed in batches and uses a sequence of alternating passes to recover three different-sized fractions: 5-30 mm, 30-80 mm and >80 mm. The recently installed X-TRACT unit has allowed for a better separation of the processed material, which has consequently increased the value of the product. The decision to install one of TOMRA´s X-TRACT machines is tied to the need to optimize the quality of recovered aluminum from the shredding process with a view to the possibility of exploiting possible synergies with the aluminum smelter located nearby.” The X-ray transmission technology (XRT) enables the recognition and separation of materials based on their atomic density, and can classify and recover materials to a high level of purity, irrespective of their size, or the degree of moisture or surface pollution present.