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Climate change requires urban transformation
Peers sought to build urban resilience platform

A new peer-to-peer platform is helping municipalities and water utilities find reliable innovative solutions to their infrastructure resilience challenges. Isle’s technology consultant Sylvia Schuster explains why managing the effects of climate change requires urban transformation.

European cities need to transform their infrastructure if they are to meet the emerging challenges posed by the effects of anthropogenic climate change. From a water perspective, this means there is now a higher probability of flooding from heavier precipitation and storm surge, but also an increased risk of not having enough water available to keep taps flowing.

Other issues arising include flood damage to buildings and other street infrastructure; sewer overflows polluting watercourses and water bodies and the declining quality of our lakes, rivers and reservoirs. Biodiversity is also at risk along with public health and the psychological wellbeing of those affected by extreme weather events.

UN-Habitat’s Urban Resilience Hub has defined urban resilience as “the measurable ability of any urban system, with its inhabitants, to maintain continuity through all shocks and stresses, while positively adapting and transforming toward sustainability” and a key part of that ability will be technological. It is against this background that Isle set up its Urban Resilience Technology Approval Group (UR TAG) in 2019.

Technology pilots

The group has spent the last year actively identifying and piloting water technologies that help transform cities’ infrastructure as they adapt to climate change. Designing and structuring the urban environment to absorb and capture as much rainwater as possible can reduce and prevent floods. The harvested rainwater can also be repurposed for irrigation and greywater domestic use.

China is leading the way to sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) at city scale, with plans for ‘sponge cities’ where 80% of the country’s urban centres harvest and reuse 70% of rainwater. Building SuDS at scale and driving urban resilience requires significant investment, which is another reason UR TAG is so important.

Best practice

UR TAG is keen to quickly grow to drive greater efficiencies and leverage more best practice case studies, knowledge and expertise. Current members include HSY – the Helsinki Region Environmental Services Authority; along with MM, which manages water and wastewater services in Milan, Italy; and the Belgian utilities Aquafin and WaterGroep. Isle Utilities and UR TAG also have a partnership with CALL Copenhagen – the Climate Change Living Lab – which enables Danish cities and utilities to be introduced to the platform.

Els Liekens, business explorer, Aquafin said, “A lot of exciting projects and innovations are taking place in the field of city resilience. Antwerp is at the forefront of this and will share learnings with other local governments in Belgium.

“To be effective, we need to improve research and innovation and by using UR TAG we have a clarified view of the available technologies and don’t have to invent it all again. The regular meetings are a useful opportunity to network and see how other cities and utilities are managing their climate resilience challenges and keeping on track with interesting solutions.”

Although a number of urban resilience conferences exist, UR TAG is the only platform looking at the next stage of becoming resilient – implementation of technologies. In addition, UR TAG represents a unique opportunity for participants to develop relationships with cities, utilities and practitioners facing similar problems.

The group also helps overcome the difficulty of researching and identifying proven technologies, facilitating pilot uptake and developing robust finance models.

Conveying & Filling, Packaging, Labeling & Storage News Plant Construction, Engineering & Components

Silage Wrap Stretch Film Capability
Coveris further expands

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Coveris Further Expands Silage Wrap Stretch Film Capability
Picture: Coveris

Building on its longstanding expertise of more than 35 years as a leading supplier of stretch films, Coveris now expands its capacities and further invests in its Kufstein plant. Following on from the recently announced major investment programme in Winsford UK, the second phase of this programme is now launched which expands and upgrades the technical capabilities in Kufstein, Austria through investment in a 5-layer specialist Agri Extrusion line.

The Winsford UK investment in new generation extrusion and pre-stretch assets creates a dedicated UK cell for stretch film production, expanding its industrial capacity and extending its capability to manufacture agricultural stretch film applications in the UK.

The 5-layer extrusion investment in Kufstein significantly enhances its position as Centre of Excellence for Agri production and will allow Coveris to extend its product range to include additional premium quality silage films for high speed wrappers and challenging bale sizes. The new equipment will be installed and commissioned during quarter two 2020, and together with the Winsford investment increases Coveris silage wrap capacity to ~30k tons.

“This investment of 5-layer extrusion capability into Kufstein is an exciting development for Coveris as we seek to significantly expand our offering within the Global Agri films market. We now have Agri manufacturing centres in both Austria and the UK, allowing us to offer our clients a wider service proposition to add to our outstanding product and technical know-how built up over many years. Our reputation for high quality products can now be enhanced further through accelerated product development and innovation”, comments Martin Davis, President Business Unit Films on the Agri investment programme.

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Measurement, Instrumentation, Control & Automation Plant Construction, Engineering & Components

Easy machine validation
Guided safety acceptance test for frequency converters

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Siemens Guided safety acceptance test for Sinamics frequency converters for easy machine validation

Picture: Siemens

With Sinamics Startdrive commissioning software, Siemens supports machine builders in the validation of safety functions for Sinamics frequency converters with a guided acceptance test. With Sinamics Startdrive, Siemens offers a tool for the integration of drive hardware into the TIA Portal engineering framework. The integrated guided acceptance test for safety functions is available for Sinamics G and S series frequency converters and complies with EN ISO 13849-2 and IEC 62061.

The safety acceptance test is extremely user-friendly. A wizard guides the user step by step through the acceptance process and checks whether the safety functions have been parameterized correctly and executed correctly in the relevant application. For documentation purposes, a standard-compliant acceptance report is then created automatically. With the safety acceptance test integrated in Sinamics Startdrive, Siemens helps machine builders to carry out the legally required validation of safety functions easily and safely.

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Conveying & Filling, Packaging, Labeling & Storage Food & Beverage Plant Construction, Engineering & Components

Deliberately produces creases
Unique labeller for unique containers

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Patented solution for affixing the foil: a servomotor turns the bottles, while linear motors press the foil onto the containers with the aid of sponges. (Picture: Krones)
Patented solution for affixing the foil: a servomotor turns the bottles, while linear motors press the foil onto the containers with the aid of sponges. (Picture: Krones)

A label with creases, and a labeller that deliberately produces these creases – what for most beverage producers is a no-no was one of the paramount requirements of Mozart Distillerie in Salzburg. A look at the container’s shape explains the paradox: the liqueur bottles are spherical, to connote the world-famous “Mozart-Kugel”. The label, made of aluminium-coated paper foil, is required to fit snugly round the container – and to look as if it had been applied by hand.

Hitherto, Mozart Distillerie had been using what is meanwhile a 30-year-old labeller from a customised-machine manufacturer, which Plant Manager Friedrich Guggenberger had progressively individualised over the course of time with numerous design enhancements of his own. But the output no longer sufficed – and Mozart Distillerie was looking for a partner to jointly develop a new machine.

Numerous customisation features combined

Because Krones’ corporate roots, of course, originate in labelling technology, the firm accepted the challenge – and combined the long years of practical experience and visions contributed by Friedrich Guggenberger and his team with the technical expertise of Krones’ own labelling specialists. And the results are truly impressive: a combination of features for precise container positioning, several inspection systems, and a multiplicity of technological customisation improvements ensure that Mozart Distillerie’s requirements are translated into engineered reality. For labelling, Krones is for the first time deploying a combination of one cold-glue and one wrap-around Contiroll labelling station, and pressure-sensitive body labels are applied to a sloping area. For affixing the foil, Krones developed a patented combination of a servomotor that turns the bottles, and linear motors that in twelve press-on operations use sponges to carefully press the foil onto the containers.

In order to ensure that the closure cap is correctly positioned as well, Krones has specially developed a guide rail that uses the sloping label area as an orientation reference point. These rails can be re-adjusted with only a few manipulations, so that all six sizes – from the small 50-millilitre to the large one-litre bottle – can be handled with the same system.

The new line is currently dressing around 5,000 bottles per hour, with an option for increasing the output to as much as 9,000 bph. It embodies two antithetical characteristics: the technology is fully automated to the latest state of the art, while the results, by contrast, reflect Mozart Distillerie’s craft philosophy.

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