In the past few months, a lot has happened at the Emsland Group’s headquarters in Emlichheim. The construction of the new roller drying plant with autoclave (nicknamed “WaltrAut” for the German Walzentrocknungsanlage mit Autoklav) is progressing rapidly. In addition to necessary excavation and drainage work and the demolition of warehouses, recent weeks have seen the pile foundations successfully set in place.
Because of the peaty subsoil, 150 piles had to be driven up to 20 meters into the ground for WaltrAut’s foundation. On top of that, transformer stations were also installed. The base plate of the plant has been laid and the first walls have been built. Despite the coronavirus epidemic and delivery delays from various suppliers, intensive rescheduling made it possible for the building to be completed shortly after the turn of the year.
Furthermore, the construction of the plant on the company premises has also brought plenty of other tasks with it. Hundreds of tons of steel have to be installed in pipe bridges, which WaltrAut will integrate into the production processes. As part of this huge investment project, large parts of the infrastructure are being overhauled and substantial preparatory work is already being carried out for other major projects to come. “The expertise involved in building this department is being provided by the Emsland Group’s own employees,” explains Florian Schmidt-Hickmann, Process Engineering Project Manager at the Emsland Group.
With all that’s happening, the “skyline” in Emlichheim is growing. The building has a total floor area of about 750 m² and reaches a height of over 31 meters. The integrated stair tower made of reinforced concrete reaches a height of almost 34 meters.
WaltrAut, an investment of over 33.9 million euros, is a new drying plant in which potato and pea starch is physically and chemically modified and dried in pressure reactors to meet the highest demands in technical applications. The extensive product range produced here is used in the surfactant and textile industry as well as in many construction and adhesive industry sectors.
After completion, the most modern equipment and machines will be installed in the new building and assembled into a complete plant. Commissioning is planned for summer 2021.