Shoalhaven City Council optimises landfill use with machine guidance technology

Peter Windley, Team Coordinator Waste Operations, Shoalhaven City Council waste services was looking to improve machine efficiency, maximise air space and extend the landfill life of the West Nowra landfill site.

In particular, Mr Windley wanted to use GNSS technology on the site’s landfill compactor. To achieve these goals, Position Partners worked with Shoalhaven City Council to implement the Carlson LandfillGrade machine guidance system.
“Overall reduction of landfilling is certainly an organisational goal for Shoalhaven City Council Waste Operations,” he said. “Maximising air space within our current landfills is a major factor in our strategic planning and, when used in conjunction with effective resource recovery activities, will ensure we prolong the landfill lifespan.”
“We conducted a trial of the Carlson LandfillGrade system in partnership with Position Partners,” Mr Windley added. “The system was fitted to our existing landfill compactor at the West Nowra landfill site. The results have been extraordinary.”

Why did Shoalhaven City Council choose the Carlson LandfillGrade machine guidance system?

The West Nowra landfill site required a technology solution that would complement the sites’ current strategy and allow Mr Windley’s team to be agile in its recycling and waste operations and continue to provide residents with state-of-the-art waste management services.
Following the trial with Position Partners, the team at West Nowra landfill site kept the Carlson LandfillGrade installed on their Tana E520 landfill compacter and now have plans to include a rover unit on the site in 2019. Mr Windley has found that the Tana E520 landfill compacter and the Carlson LandfillGrade from Position Partners work together seamlessly.
“It is a natural fit and we have seen some excellent results in air space savings and significant reductions in filling and compaction costs,” Windley said.

Benefits of implementing the Carlson LandfillGrade machine guidance system

Prior to implementing the Carlson LandfillGrade from Position Partners, the West Nowra team struggled to ensure consistent landfilling practice with inconsistent filling and considerable reworking a common problem.
“This was very time consuming and inconsistent filling was very common, requiring considerable reworking at times,” he said. “Supervisory staff had to hold tip face, regular meetings multiple times per week and at shift changes just to ensure consistent landfilling practice.”
“These issues are now a thing of the past, our compaction rates have increased, cell filling is exact, we use significantly less cover material and have seen considerable reduction in fuel usage,” he added
Mr Windley found that the Carlson LandfillGrade from Position Partners was the best fit for the Shoalhaven City Council landfill site for a wide range of reasons, including:

  • Improvements in airspace utilisation and maximised compaction to reach optimum density in less time;
  • The ability to measure waste volume and density daily;
  • The ability to import weighbridge data for accurate daily density calculations;
  • Minimise daily cover use in accurately measuring cover material;
  • Track waste compaction (deflection and pass counts) in real-time;
  • Determine slope and grade management;
  • Assist operators to eliminate overfill for outer design slopes and need for rectification;
  • GPS locate and record hazardous waste within landfill cell;
  • Record actual material placement;
  • The ability to locate and track avoidance zones such as gas wells and hazardous material placement;
  • To provide connectivity of machines and office;
  • Remote monitoring of machines and work completed;
  • Provide historical playback for machines and material placement;
  • Easily generate airspace, daily density and volume reports.

“The reporting and monitoring features of this system are excellent,” he said. “The 3D replay feature is great for operator tool box talks and issues relating to multiple operators and continuity on a filling face over seven days have been eliminated entirely. They just follow the design on the screen.”

The importance of service and support during purchasing and implementation

One of the major factors that Mr Windley took into consideration when choosing to implement Carlson LandfillGrade machine guidance technology was the service and support offered by Position Partners.
“Dieter, from the landfill and mining section of Position Partners, has been excellent, he has conducted training sessions for our team and provided a thorough level of support,” he said.
“The improvements to our disposal cell areas and filling activities are substantial. Operators have been able to fill according to the exact design, with reduced machine passes and use minimal cover. Saving time, cost and maximising air space utilisation,” he added.
“Every landfill operator should consider this technology to maximise landfill life and reduce costs.”

About Shoalhaven City Council

Shoalhaven City Council waste services is responsible for recycling, resource recovery and waste disposal activities for a local government area of approximately 5,000km² and 100,000 residents. Shoalhaven City Council is committed to finding the most effective ways to reduce, reuse and recycle for its communities and offer its residents contemporary facilities and leading technologies to reduce waste in the environment.
Peter Windley, Team Coordinator Waste Operations with Shoalhaven City Council, leads a team of 56 staff that manage daily operations at Shoalhaven City Council’s 10 recycling and waste facilities including two landfills, transfer stations at each site, a pre-booked garden organics and bulky goods collection service, 10 Community Recycling Centres (CRC’s), seven buy-back recycling shops and three former landfills.