Decentralised Sewage Eliminates Transport Headaches

by PNG Business News - October 20, 2021

Decentralised sewage treatment is not common in Papua New Guinea (PNG) yet according to the United Nations sustainability development goals (SDG's) sanitation and clean drinking water are two of the core fundamentals for society. Whether your site is a community village, an educational institute, regional hospital or mining camp, it needs to adequately sewage to maintain a healthy virus free community.

Logistically however, remote decentralised sewage systems are one of the hardest projects to undertake because they involve sizable infrastructure. With Hydroflux you do have choices and the skills are here in-country, so in this article we review the options to achieve sanitation in remote areas through the appropriate selection of decentralised sewage solutions.

Prefabricated tanks are generally the best option because they can be constructed off site, tested, and sent to site ready to install in a "plug and play" format. An important sustainable benefit of the Hydroflux Epco decentralised STP is that we construct the tanks in Port Moresby or Lae increasing local economic value through our in-country partnerships.

There are two decentralised STP options available through Hydroflux Epco and both have their merits if applied appropriately. Selecting the appropriate solution is centered around the life span of your site. In simple terms, ask yourself; Does the site have a medium-term lifespan of less than 10 to 15 years duration or is the project for a community style site to last 25 years or more?

The first option for medium to short term sites is a fully containerised system. Fully containerised systems are often more economical because they are built offshore in high volume production lines and are built using sheet metal stainless steel inside standard shipping containers. Yes, they are purpose built from the ground up but they are a one size fits all standardised solution with little ability for customisation. The containerised solution by Mena Water, is an excellent example of a quality German owned design made in the United Arab Emirates from quality European components. Quality containerised systems are appropriate where CAPEX budget is a limiting factor or for a maximum effective site life of between 10 to 15 years.

The second, and most appropriate option for PNG is fabricated here in country. The Hydroflux Epco RoadTrain® STP is purpose built from the ground up and is designed for longevity, thus having significant circular economic value. The RoadTrains are readily refurbished and are capable of accepting future process improvements. As of 2021, the Tabubil RoadTrain STP is 39 years old and being successfully refurbished and upgraded for inlet screening of in-organics and sludge handling prior to effluent discharge. Both modern technologies were not available in 1981 when the site was first built.

Road Train Construction
RoadTrain Construction

There are two installation variants available in the RoadTrain series depending on your site's logistical disposition. The first variant is a fully welded tank configuration for transporting as a standalone low and wide load for sites with little if any logistical issues. The second is a bolted panel configuration for flat pack delivery and assembly on site where road access and or cranage is limited or problematic. You can watch an animated assembly of the Hydroflux Epco bolted RoadTrain in this edition of PNG Business News and on the Hydroflux Epco website. Just look for our advertisement or follow the link to our website at the end of this article.

Recently, Hydroflux Epco and their in-country representative's, constructed each of the decentralised options mentioned in this article.

Enga province in the western highlands is the site of one of our most recent containerised installations. The Wabag decentralised solution was built over the Summer of 2020/21. The site was accessible, a stock standard solution fitted the brief and a Mena Water containerised solution was selected.

The Kundiawa STP in Chimbu province is a bolted panel design because the access road down to the site is very narrow and steep, virtually impossible for wide load access. In this case the bolted RoadTrain assembly as seen in the animation on our website was the most appropriate choice.

In contrast, the fully welded version of the RoadTrain Original was used for Lihir, Kiunga and Wangbin townships because of ready access via road and coastal sea freight. The RoadTrains for the Western Province towns were fabricated in Port Moresby for ready access to the Fly River via coastal shipping and the Lihir project would have been produced in Lae for shipping east to New Ireland Province except for unfortunate Covid related delays in Morobe Province at the time.

Hydroflux Epco are the regional leaders of this type of design with over 60 years’ experience in PNG across some 40 plus locations from the Western Highlands to the Eastern most islands of Bougainville and New Ireland. The Hydroflux Epco product range is trademarked as the RoadTrain® STP and Hydroflux Epco are proud to say our RoadTrain STP's provide the highest level of economic value for PNG because they can be produced locally.

When it comes to robustness and longevity, the RoadTrain STP is the best choice for project life spans greater than 25 years and when your site logistics are problematic, for any reason, the Hydroflux Epco bolted RoadTrain is the design of choice. So, if you are considering sewage treatment for your next project, think about logistics first, and let Hydroflux Epco take care of producing a treatment outcome that protects your community into the future, whatever distance that horizon is.

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PNG Business News - November 21, 2021

Sewage Treatment in a Circular Economy

Think of two words, sewage and nutrients. Now create a mental picture that puts them together in a context that makes sense for you. For most people, the picture they create is some form of liquid that is beneficial to the growth of plants. Yes, effluent reuse on landscapes is one of the biological nutrients that can spin out of sewage treatment, but there are so many more nutrients, and the majority of them are known as technical nutrients derived from rethinking and improving business processes. It is organisations, like Hydroflux Epco where thinking of design as an opportunity to develop technical nutrients who will make the real difference in combating climate change. Developing technical nutrients is achieved by designing out wasteful processes, keeping products in operation longer and considering processes to regenerate natural systems. Biological nutrients are the natural by-products of a process that can be consumed by something. Sewage treatment has two of these in effluent and sludge. Effluent can be reused on landscaping, toilet flushing and dust suppression while sludge can be reused after composting, as a soil amendment for projects such as reforestation of mining leases. Technical nutrients are the alternative business processes that contribute positively to reducing the negative impact of a product on its environment. In this instance we are referring to a product’s environment as its impact on people, the planet and prosperity. These three perspectives are known as the triple bottom line and Hydroflux Epco considers all three when designing projects for decentralised solutions in water and wastewater. Decentralised solutions are often very remote and if not considered appropriately they can have a significantly negative impact due to the tyranny of distance. Using the Hydroflux Epco RoadTrain® decentralised wastewater system as the example we can demonstrate both biological and technical nutrients being generated. Biological nutrients were covered above so now let us look closer at the technical nutrient side of the butterfly diagram in the infographic. One of the first circular design objectives is to keep a product in operation for as long as possible. The robust construction of the RoadTrain® using 6mm thick steel combined with advanced coatings means the Hydroflux Epco plant is designed to last more than thirty years.  Most cheap alternatives are lucky to last ten to fifteen. The manufacture of the RoadTrain® is performed as close to the client site as practical, often in the destination country, which provides economic value to the local community and reduces unnecessary CO2 generated by excessive transport. Decentralised projects also require consideration of the installation and commissioning phase as an opportunity to find hidden nutrients. In the Hydroflux Epco case, local representatives and client crews are engaged to provide installation and commissioning services. A reduction in logistics is achieved by taking advantage of cutting-edge communication to allow engineers on site and in the office to execute a project without leaving their place of origin.   A question often asked, is how to tell the difference between an organisation in the circular economy, and one locked in the linear traditional economy. To find the answer, look for an organisation like Hydroflux Epco who deliberate how their design is going to be prolonged, reused, refurbished and ultimately recycled after it leaves the front gate. The question you should ask yourself is; will the product continue to produce technical nutrients once the project is completed? If the answer is yes, then you have found a circular product design. Using the Hydroflux Epco RoadTrain™ as the example. Earlier we outlined how the RoadTrain is designed to be robust, but the full design has to be considered as well. Hydroflux Epco extends their design thinking to the selection of quality peripheral equipment, appropriate level of automation (as little as possible for very remote sites) and the simplification of the maintenance routine. With appropriate selection there is a higher likelihood of a plant lasting generations if local operators can maintain it easily. The equipment itself is not the only consideration when thinking about technical nutrients. Over time, conditions of a site change. Companies get sold or closed and equipment gets removed so it is often critically important for a system to be able to be relocatable and thus reused. Additionally, it is near impossible to predict future compliance regimes so the wastewater plant must have the ability to be augmented if it is to continue to be of value. RoadTrains® are in service for generations and that means a plant installed in the 1980’s is unlikely to have the same level of compliance as a plant made in the 2020’s. A classic example is a mining client in PNG whose Epco RoadTrain® was installed in 1982. In circular fashion, that system was renovated in 2021 and additional process equipment added so it can remain in service for another 20 years being the design life of the mine. Expansion of capacity is yet another technical nutrient often overlooked. When expansion is forgotten, a take, make, waste, linear business thinking, of throwing away old equipment occurs. This happens because future expansion is not considered during the initial project phase. Feedback loops during the design phase ensure that Hydroflux Epco decentralised solutions start with looking at possible expansion plans. Of course, all contingencies can’t be considered but a simple design concept such as leaving room on the site and in equipment design for future stages improves the lifecycle outcome. Finally, how will the materials be recycled when the lifecycle of the plant has come to an end? The answer to this question boils down to material selection, and a steel-based plant of any form is a better choice than no recyclable alternatives. Climate change is here to stay, and we all have an obligation to do what we can to improve our impact on people, the planet and prosperity by considering how we and our organisations design equipment through the lens of both biological AND technical nutrients.

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PNG Business News - December 02, 2021

Adyton Resources hits significant copper at Feni Island, Papua New Guinea

Photo credit: Adyton Resources Adyton Resources Corporation has reported significant copper assays at its 100% owned Feni Island Project (Feni) in Papua New Guinea following the completion of the company’s maiden drilling program of five diamond holes (1,982m) in September. The initial objectives of the program were to expand the gold resource as well as test various induced polarisation (IP) anomalies for the potential of a copper porphyry system.  Multi-element assays have now been returned with significant copper intersections being recorded from hole ADK004 in two zones – a shallower disseminated zone of copper mineralisation followed by a zone of massive sulphide copper mineralisation: Disseminated Cu + Au: •             35.9m (70.7 to 106.6m) @ 0.3% Cu & 1.1g/t Au Massive sulphide Cu + Au: •             6.4m (149.7 to 156.1m) @ 5.1% Cu & 1.6g/t Au                Incl         3.6m (151.5 to 155.1m) @ 6.9% Cu & 2.1g/t Au Incl         0.7m (154.4 to 155.1m) @ 14.5% Cu & 2.4g/t Au Adyton Resources President, Executive Chairman and CEO, Mr Frank Terranova, said the assay results demonstrated Feni’s significant copper potential. “The results confirm that Feni could contain zones of high-grade copper within the extensive gold mineralisation and this confirmation of massive sulphide copper in the system justifies more work which is currently being planned,” Mr Terranova said. “The recent drilling program has highlighted the potential for a significant discovery to be made in the 1.5km long Kabang structural corridor. The corridor is lightly drilled, and going north is covered by younger volcanic cover, which has hindered previous exploration efforts – a focus of the next program will be exploring under this younger cover.” Located in a Tier 1 region along a mineral belt containing the world class Simberi, Lihir, and Panguna gold and copper projects, Mr Terranova added that the model at Feni was for a “Lihir-style” epithermal gold overprint on a deeper porphyry copper system.


PNG Business News - November 30, 2021

Weir Minerals’ new Trio® TC84XR live-shaft cone crusher improves safety, functionality and reliability

Weir Minerals has upgraded its range of Trio® TC live-shaft cone crushers. The Trio® TC84XR features all the robust design elements that have made live-shaft crushers a fixture of the mining and sand and aggregate industries for generations, while also incorporating the latest technology to ensure it remains integral to flowsheets long into the future. ‘The Trio TC cone crushers’ live-shaft design has been proven to perform in heavy-duty secondary and tertiary crushing applications. We wanted to build on this strong foundation. My team followed a comprehensive design process – we’ve reviewed and tested every inch of this crusher. While the TC84XR may seem familiar on the outside, we’ve upgraded its design and control functionality. The motor is larger and it has a much higher crushing capacity compared to equivalent sized crushers,’ Mark Utecht, Weir Minerals’ Director of Comminution Engineering said. ‘The result: we now have an incredibly robust, powerful and technologically advanced crusher that is easy to operate, has a low wear rate and uses less energy, which ultimately lowers operating costs,’ he said. While many OEMs have made the decision to discontinue their live-shaft cone crushers, Weir Minerals has resisted this trend, believing that – because every mining and sand and aggregate operation is different – there can’t be a one-size-fits all approach. Instead, Weir Minerals partners with its customers and empowers them to choose the machine best suited to their crushing needs. There are some applications and situations where pedestal (fixed-shaft) style crushers may be the more appropriate solution, which is why Weir Minerals continues to manufacture the premium Trio® TP pedestal style machine. Weir Minerals is the only global equipment manufacturer that offers both the TC live shaft and TP fixed shaft style machines. ‘The combination of the Trio TP and TC fixed and live-shaft cone crushers ensures that Weir Minerals continue to offer their customers the right technology, regardless of their site structure, operating conditions or application,’ Mark Utecht, Weir Minerals’ Director of Comminution Engineering said. Trio® live- and fixed-shaft cone crushers are made for modern mines and quarries with advanced hydraulics, wear resistant material and the latest technology. ‘This is really exciting for our customers, as they now have a real choice. The combination of our TC and TP series allows us to have an honest conversation with our customers on the options available to them and make a technological recommendation which truly meets their needs,’ Ekkhart Matthies, Weir Minerals’ Global Application Director said. Replacing existing live-shaft style machines on site with the Trio® TC84XR crusher is now a straightforward process because it has very similar dimensions and is a comparable weight to its live-shaft predecessors. And because it produces the same product, downstream changes aren’t required, which isn’t the case when replacing a live-shaft style machine with a fixed-shaft style machine. In other words, there is no need to re-design existing circuits. Technology upgrades The recent technology upgrades in the Trio® TC84XR crusher have improved its safety, functionality and reliability. ‘At Weir Minerals, we understand and appreciate the important role live-shaft cone crushers play in today’s challenging crushing applications. Combining decades of experience and first-hand customer feedback with innovative designs, the highest quality materials and latest in control technology we believe that our new Trio TC84XR cone crusher is the most reliable and robust live-shaft cone in the market today’ Ekkhart Matthies, Weir Minerals Global Application Director said. Engineered to perform in the most extreme applications, the Trio® TC84XR crusher is robust and easy to maintain and operate. It reliably delivers high crushing force and high horsepower in primary, crushed ore and quarry rock applications. The ability of the TC84XR crusher to handle variable feed and crush pebbles is also partly a result of its large motor; it’s been designed with higher power capability than comparable cone crushers. Ultimately, this translates to a higher potential crushing force and therefore increase in production. Another feature that allows it to handle variable feed, as well as deal with tramp material safely, is the fully-automated tramp-release and setting recovery system. The tramp release hydraulics can also be used to safely clear the crushing chamber should a sudden disruption in plant power cause a shut-down of the cone crusher. The socket assembly has been redesigned to improve sealing, which has optimised functionality and manufacturability by reducing the machining setups of the socket and seal rings. The Weir Minerals comminution team has also redesigned the countershaft assembly to remove welding and machining, while simultaneously improving venting and the dust seal. The Trio® TC84XR crusher, like the range of TP series cone crushers, can be fitted with ESCO® wear parts, designed with superior ESCO® alloys, they can be custom designed based on your specific requirements. With over 100 years of casting expertise and in-house engineering and metallurgy, ESCO transforms what was already a robust machine into one that, in the toughest conditions, is unsurpassed. All Trio® equipment is supported by the Weir Minerals unmatched global service centre network – with over 160 facilities worldwide. Further information can be found at


PNG Business News - November 26, 2021

PM Marape welcomes K22 billion Budget

Photo credit: PM James Marape News Page - Treasurer Ling-Stuckey tabling the 2022 Budget Prime Minister Hon. James Marape has welcomed the tabling of the record K22.175 billion 2022 Budget by Treasurer Ian Ling-Stuckey in Parliament. He said it would help Papua New Guinea on the path to economic recovery as well as support successful delivery of the 2022 National General Election. “The total Budget of K22.175 billion is 9.3 per cent higher than the 2021 Supplementary Budget, with a revenue envelope of K16.190 billion which is 18.4 per cent higher than the 2021 Supplementary Budget,” PM Marape said. “The fiscal deficit for 2022 is K5.895 billion, which is 5.9 per cent of the 2022 Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Compare this deficit to K6. 6 billion or 7 per cent of GDP in 2021. “In 2022, the PNG economy is projected to grow strongly by 5.4 per cent, from K93 billion in 2021` to K102 billion. “The 2022 Budget will continue the budget repair and economic recovery path, with strong focus on non-resource sector growth, and at the same time support families and businesses. “There will be increased development and capital funding to high priority programmes and sufficient funding for key social sectors to stimulate economic growth. “The delivery of my Government’s third Budget today, despite the many challenges and obstacles, shows clearly the work that we have been doing. “It points to the fact that our path to economic recovery is correct, and with critical analysis by all multilateral Budget partners like Asian Development Bank, International Monetary Fund and World Bank, our positive trajectories show an increase in GDP for next year and beyond as well as a declining budget deficit trend. “The handing down of the Budget is the single most-important parliamentary occasion of any government. “With hangovers and effects of a slowed economy due to COVID-19, your Government has used the last three years of National Budget to ensure our domestic economy was functional and alive, and our crucial services were maintained. “I want to assure our people and all stakeholders in our economy that we are responsible and prudent to ensure expected outcomes of our Budget are achieved.” PM Marape said since his Government took office in May 2019, it had used the Budget to support schools, hospitals, COVID-19 programmes, road construction, SME funds, retiring old debts and contractual obligations, paying outstanding industrial awards, and many others. “Our 2022 Budget embraces our national outcomes including opening up all parts of our country; intervening in sustainable economy; starting up Porgera, Papua LNG and Wafi-Golpu for our economy; paying for our children’s education in 2022 and beyond; building new hospitals; ramping up support to Bougainville; clearing up projects like new Supreme Court Building and ensuring the 2022 General Election is fully funded,” he said. “All the above we are doing whilst maintaining strict discipline in sticking to our money plan, with our development partners observing our discipline to reforms. “Key in our reforms is to borrow low-cost US dollar denominated borrowings like the Australian $400-million dollar and the Japanese Government US$280million 0.01 per cent five-year grace period lending, which all came directly into our economy by way of Budget support. “I just want to assure our people and our economic stake holders that we are going through tough times, but we will use the Budget policies wisely to share the load of burden and also ensure key infrastructure like the 1900 kilometres of road we built the last two years all over rural PNG through our flagship ‘Connect PNG’ programme are continued.”   Article courtesy of PM James Marape News Page

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