Construction of a demonstration glass recycling plant to produce a cement additive

The project and its challenges

The company’s mission is to recover recycled wastes from over 50 Quebec municipalities. Basing their approach on university research on glass recycling, they wanted to build a glass recycling plant with an output of one ton per hour and able to produce a micronized cement additive. Nothing like this had ever been attempted, hence the technical risks were significant. From preliminary design studies to the start-up of the test plant, Seneca provided the following services:

  • Feasibility studies
  • CAPEX and OPEX estimates
  • Detailed engineering
  • Process development and design (Seneca process package)
  • Procurement management
  • Technical assistance during construction
  • Technical assistance during start-up.



$4 million


2012 – 2013

The proposed solution

Used equipment

Seneca found a ball mill, previously used to grind metals, that had been in storage in Europe for the past 30 years. After a complete overhaul, it was put into operation in the pilot plant. The purchase of this essential component was very favourable for the budget and helped meet the schedule, as a new ball mill would have entailed a 36-month delivery.

An innovative process

While it is never easy to work with wastes, Tricentris has a LEED certification. For this reason, it was important to avoid adding water to the process in order to avoid the release of any liquid effluents into the natural wastewater treatment lagoon. The Seneca team demonstrated their advanced technical skills by collaborating on the development of a dry cleaning process for recycled crushed glass. As a result, this process lowered operation costs since a dryer was not required before dry grinding.

The results

  • Successful marketing of the micronized glass powder
  • Testing start-up on time and on budget
  • Operating according to production quality and quantity objectives
  • Reduction in total capital investment vs. initial assessments
  • Future potential growth of over 10 tons per hour
  • Creation of about fifteen skilled jobs in recycling
  • Marketing technology showcase for a clean tech process in Quebec.

Thanks to Seneca, we were able to transform an idea developed in the lab into a commercial project. Our trial period clearly demonstrated our ability to produce a quality glass powder at an industrial pace.

One of the Client’s project managers

Share This