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Spross Transport & Recycling AG triples the amount of ZenRobotics sorters at Zurich facility

A robotic picker sorts and moves C&D waste on a conveyor
A ZenRobotics robotic picker Source: ZenRobotics

Spross Transport & Recycling AG has purchased more of ZenRobotics robotic sorters to recover more valuable fractions at the company's Spross Recyclingwerk Zurich RWZ site. This facility processes 180,000 tonnes of construction waste and bulky household waste annually. Spross provides recycled waste services across Switzerland and uses a safe sorting approach to help ensure the company quickly and safely sorts waste and sends it to recovery facilities where the waste is reused.

Spross began working with ZenRobotics back in 2019 with an aim to increase the efficiency of its waste recycling operation. Manager of Disposal Services at Spross -Groupe, Josef Binzegger was impressed by the ZenRobotics safe sorting robots that he, along with the team at Spross, has decided that they warrant further investment.

Spross will triple the amount of Heavy Picker robot arms at their RWZ facility in 2022 to sort fractions at a rate of 6000 picks per hour – allowing them to earn more from valuable fractions or reduce the cost of elimination. So far, the robots have been recovering mainly concrete and stone for concrete production, as well as wood and plastics and some metals.

"We are working 13 metres above ground and what amazed me was that these robots work perfectly in these difficult surroundings. This environment is dusty, it is not heated, and the ground vibrates all the time," says Josef Binzegger, manager of disposal services at Spross-Groupe.

The conditions at Spross can be challenging and have the potential to become risky and unsafe for human interaction.

"Our robots are custom-made and are a perfect fit for this plant despite the challenging environment," says Juha Mieskonen, head of sales at ZenRobotics. "Because our waste sorting robots work so well under challenging circumstances, they have increased work safety by replacing manual labour, and have created a workplace that actively promotes safe sorting."

The waste sorting robot can sort up to four different types of fractions and can be programmed to detect new sorts of waste simply by running the waste through it and telling the robot that this item needs to be collected. This along with the speed and precision that the robots picked helped Binzegger with the decision to utilize more robotic sorters.

ZenRobotics allows Spross to keep up with legal and commercial requirements and is able to adapt to waste regulation changes with ease. The waste sorting robot is also very easy to use via a touch screen.

"If you know how to use an iPhone, you also know how to use this robot with no difficulties," says Binzegger.

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