Pennsylvania MRF taps BHS to upgrade system

Penn Waste, York, Pennsylvania, has added new optical sorting and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to its single-stream material recovery facility (MRF). Provided by Eugene, Oregon-based Bulk Handling Systems (BHS), the upgrade is designed to boost the facility’s capacity by almost 30 percent from 35 to 45 tons per hour (tph). This comes on the heels of Penn Waste’s addition of an SDS 800i drum separator from Nihot, Amsterdam, in early 2017 to increase the company’s capacity to purify glass.

The $3.5 million investment includes three new optical sorters from NRT, Nashville, Tennessee, and a Max-AI Autonomous Quality Control (AQC) unit. The Max-AI AQC employs a neural network-based AI designed to identify materials in a manner similar to that of a person. Rather than using deterministic sensors, Max relies on its vision system and probabilistic decision-making to provide robotic quality control for the plant’s polyethylene terephthalate (PET) containers, according to BHS.

A new NRT SpydIR optical sorter removes small cardboard boxes from the container line. The plant’s high-density polyethylene (HDPE) sorter was replaced by a new, larger NRT SpydIR, which is followed by a new NRT ColorPlus that sorts the HDPE by color. A new eddy current separator increases used beverage container (UBC) recovery. At the end of the line, the SpydIR that had previously recovered HDPE was combined with an integrated MetalDirector designed to boost the plant capture rate by recovering the last few plastic and metal containers that were missed by the main sorting process.

The addition of the new technology also has significantly reduced the plant’s head count, the company says.

“While others are slowly adapting to the new reality, our system is running more material than ever,” Tim Horkay, Penn Waste director of recycling operations, says. “This upgrade was accomplished in just nine days, and, thanks to our partnership with BHS, we did not have to divert even a single load of material. The new container logic allows us to react to our new container-rich waste stream and capture more materials at higher levels of quality with fewer sorters. Commercial recycling isn’t easy right now, but thanks to this system and its upgrades, we are out in front and in a position to take on more material.”

“This investment in new technology is a testament to the ownership and management of Penn Waste and their commitment to their customers and employees,” Steve Miller, BHS CEO, says. “Completing a project like this in such a short time frame was a challenge we did not take lightly, and our teams really stepped up and delivered. BHS is honored to have this ongoing and very successful partnership with such an excellent company.”

A video interview with Penn Waste’s Horkay includes footage of the upgraded system in action and is available at

Visit or for more information.

Machinex wins Montreal MRF contract

The Executive Committee of Ville de Montreal has granted a contract to La Compagnie de Recyclage de Papiers M D Inc., Châteauguay, Quebec. This contract allows for the design, construction, operation and maintenance of a new recycling plant in Lachine, a borough of Montreal. La Compagnie de Recyclage de Papiers M D has selected Machinex, Plessisville, Quebec, to provide the new system, projected to be fully operational in fall 2019.

This system will be capable of processing more than 75,000 metric tons per year of single-stream recyclables from Montreal’s curbside collection. With its 35-metric-ton-per-hour capacity, the material recovery facility (MRF) will include Machinex’s technologies, including three optical sorters for fibers and four optical sorters for plastic containers.

A bag extractor system developed by Machinex also will be installed, as will two eddy current separators and two single-ram balers.

This system will not have rubber disc screens but rather a cardboard separator (with metal discs) and three Mach Ballistic separators.

Éco Entreprise Québec (ÉEQ), Quebec, will donate a glass sorting and cleaning system for the MRF. The equipment is being provided by Machinex and U.K.-based Krysteline Technologies.

‘‘We are very proud to be part of this large-scale project so close [to] our location. We designed a system that will meet the immediate and future needs of Montreal, thus helping its recycling objectives,’’ says Sébastien Roy, project director at Machinex.

Gilbert Durocher, president of La Compagnie de Recyclage de Papiers M D, says, ‘‘When we decided to submit a bid on this project, our choice was immediately directed towards Machinex since they are a long-term trusted partner. We knew they would be able to deliver a performing MRF with the most advanced technologies and that we can count on quick and professional service.”

Machinex develops sorting, waste management and recycling technology and has designed and installed more than 350 turnkey facilities. Visit for additional information on the company.

Capital investments seen rising in 2018

The Washington-based Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation has released a forecast predicting business investment in equipment and software will expand 9.1 percent in the United States in 2018.

The foundation’s “2018 Equipment Leasing & Finance U.S. Economic Outlook” report, which can be found online at, indicates the 9.1 percent projection is well-above the estimated 5.2 percent growth rate experienced in 2017.

While a few headwinds persist, they should be outweighed by an encouraging business investment climate, according to the foundation. Credit market conditions are mostly healthy as credit supply remains steady and financial stress is at historic lows.

The report, which is focused on the $1 trillion equipment leasing and finance industry, highlights key trends in equipment investment and places them in the context of the broader U.S. economic climate.

“This forecast for higher-than-expected growth in capital equipment investment is indeed good news,” says Ralph Petta, president of the foundation and president and CEO of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association. “Business conditions appear favorable heading into the new year, with Washington poised to enact lower corporate tax rates and the economy continuing to grow slowly and steadily. Equipment finance organizations we talk to are bullish about 2018 growth projections for the industry.”

The “Equipment Leasing & Finance U.S. Economic Outlook” report is produced in partnership with Washington-based economics and public policy consulting firm Keybridge Research.

Leck Waste Services adds 3rd Eye vehicle data suite

Ivyland, Pennsylvania-based Leck Waste Services, a waste hauler serving commercial customers throughout Pennsylvania’s Bucks County, Montgomery County and southern Lehigh County as well as northeast Philadelphia, has added a 3rd Eye vehicle data suite to its operations. Katy, Texas-based 3rd Eye’s Enhance Vehicle Behavioral Analytics (VBA) is designed to provide vehicle-based data collection and reporting solutions.

3rd Eye says it has developed technology that digitally interprets chassis and body system inputs and communicates this information in real time through 3rd Eye’s Hurricane Gateway. In addition, 3rd Eye camera data can be transmitted through the gateway, allowing Leck to view and report on situational inputs immediately.

“I believe that moving forward, our fleet would be utilizing Enhance VBA because it is a necessity more than a luxury,” says Jason Leck, vice president, Leck Waste. “Enhance gives us the ability to have an in-depth look of our fleet and allows us to be more profitable against a competitor in a marketplace where there are very little margins.”

Founded in 1971, Leck Waste Services operates more than 35 commercial vehicles ranging from rear loaders and front loaders to roll-offs. The company also offers compactor, baler, shredding and portable toilet service.

Downers Grove, Illinois-based Dover’s 3rd Eye,, was formed in 2001. It provides real-time vehicle function/route performance analytics and uses camera systems to capture and document in-cab and external events to improve the safety, reliability and profitability of collection fleet operations.