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The Fournier Rotary Press: A Superior Sludge Dewatering Technology

Nico Erasmus
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In the world of wet waste management, cutting-edge technology is the cornerstone of success. At Sinowatek, we understand the critical role that advanced solutions play in designing effective wet waste management facilities. Among the essential tools in our arsenal is the Fournier Rotary PressTM sludge dewatering technology, renowned for its exceptional performance and minimal environmental footprint.

A Journey of Evaluation

To ensure we maintain the highest standards of performance, equipment quality, durability, and client satisfaction, we recently embarked on a journey to Canada. During this visit, we had the privilege of exploring the manufacturing and R&D facilities of Groupe Industries Fournier, and we were taken to several key sites where the Fournier Rotary PressTM is the primary dewatering technology. This experience provided invaluable insights and allowed us to re-evaluate this remarkable technology.

Municipal Sewerage Plants:

Our first stop was a municipal sewerage plant serving around 7,500 people. Here, we witnessed a 3-channel Fournier Rotary PressTM in action, efficiently processing a mix of municipal sewerage, duck farm effluent, and biological sludge. What stood out was the machine's impressive operation, running 22 hours a day, including a smooth and unattended night shift.

One unique feature of this facility is the use of two sludge pumps from different ponds, adjusting their ratios to optimize cake dryness and throughput. The entire process is exceptionally clean, with minimal operator intervention and mild odours. The Fournier Rotary PressTM consistently delivers high-quality cake, with dryness levels ranging from 23% to 36%,depending on the feed materials' ratios.

At another municipal sewerage plant serving approximately 150,000 people, two 6-channelFournier Rotary PressTM units operate efficiently for 16 hours daily, producing a cake with 35% dryness and clear filtrate. These rotary presses replaced belt presses, reducing the footprint by an impressive 75% and significantly improving the environment. The filtrate undergoes biological processing, disinfection, and is then released into the river, while lime is added to the sludge to manage odours.

Septage Processing Plant:

At the septage processing plant, we encountered a 3-channel Fournier Rotary PressTM unit handling septage from tankers. After screening and temporary storage, the sludge is processed, yielding an impressive 37% cake dryness. This dry cake is immediately put to use by farmers. The filtrate is sent for anaerobic processing, contributing to a sustainable cycle.

Paper and Pulp Processing Plants:

Our visit to a paper mill revealed two fully operational 6-channel Fournier Rotary PressTM units that have been in service since 1998 and 2004. Remarkably, these units have required only minor maintenance interventions and have never needed screen replacements. The operation is exceptionally clean, with minimal wastage and operator involvement. The paper mill is also exploring ways to extract additional value from the cake, showcasing the technology's adaptability and potential.

Meanwhile, at a construction materials plant, we found a recently installed 3-channel unit producing remarkably dry cake with a clear filtrate. Operator feedback was overwhelmingly positive, highlighting the technology's ease of use and efficiency.


Our visits reaffirmed the high quality and simplicity of the Fournier Rotary PressTM equipment, leading to minimal maintenance. Its potential for cleanliness extends to every aspect of operation, promoting efficiency and spotless floors. The technology's complete automation is evident in its uninterrupted 22-hour shifts.

Durability was demonstrated at the paper mill, where units have thrived with minimal maintenance interventions for nearly two decades. Clients who have replaced belt presses with the Fournier Rotary PressTM consistently praise its performance, citing high cake dryness and clear filtrate.

Our visit to Canada left us with renewed confidence in the Fournier Rotary PressTM as ahigh-quality, high-performance, and environmentally friendly dewatering technology. These experiences also underscored the innovative and sustainable practices that can be adopted by municipal sewerage plants and paper mills. We eagerly anticipate implementing these successful practices in Africa. Together, we can advance the future of wet waste management worldwide.

Contact us if you want to experience this advanced sludge dewatering technology firsthand. We can arrange to bring a full-scale Fournier Rotary Press pilot unit to your specific site for testing.

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