If you compost your garden waste, you’ll know that every now and then you need to grab a spade and mix the layers of compost. That’s the only way to ensure the material breaks down evenly and forms a good-quality substrate. In large-scale industrial plants, there are turning machines that take care of that – mounted on caterpillar tracks, they use a rotor to mix the triangular piles, literally moving the lowest layer to the top and vice-versa.
Thanks to its Backhus brand, Eggersmann GmbH is a global market leader in the niche segment of mobile turner technology. After all, only regular turning can get enough oxygen into the compost to improve its quality. Eggersmann has so far built around 1300 machines, which are being used in 78 countries. It was 2012 when Backhus joined the Eggersmann Group, which specialises in the production of mobile and stationary machines and plants for processing and shredding and is thus a good match for the turning professionals at Backhus. “The Eggersmann Group now covers the entire gamut of recycling technology, right up to the construction of entire composting and treatment plants,” says Jens Brinkmann, head of the electrical engineering department at Eggersmann GmbH.
A choice of countless options
Production staff manufacture a wide range of machinery on an order-by-order basis – primarily operator-controlled turners with a cabin and a whole host of options for customers to choose from. For example, there are various undercarriages, movable cabins and radio-controlled hose carts for watering the piles. Backhaus also has a solution for automated mixing – the Lane Turner works in enclosed plants and doesn’t need a driver.
Electrical engineering and electronics are crucial to Backhus turners – and are becoming increasingly important. Here are two examples: The vehicles are operated via a virtual cockpit that enables rapid diagnostics when irregularities occur. Sensors in the rotor – the actual tool on the machine – measure rotational speed and oil temperature, among other things. There is a wide range of options, both in terms of electrical design – which is carried out in Eplan Electric P8 – and the machines. Brinkmann’s plan was therefore to pursue consistent modularisation to simplify electrical design work. The plan was first put into action on the A series from Backhus: “We have created modules for the electrical components of each functional unit such as the rotor, cabin, hydraulic tank, base frame and motor unit and connected these together via interfaces.”