Separate Waste Systems

- Modular Press


The OREX PRESS has a modular construction. It consists of the “active part” which is the press ram, the guiding and all the functional parts are located in a self-supporting structure in an electro-welded construction, and the central “passive” part of the structure containing the main cylinder and the extrusion chamber.

The extrusion processis carried out in three phases:

  1. Feeding Phase;
  2. Compression Phase;
  3. Expulsion Phase.

The feed cylinder feeds the incoming organic waste via a pre-press ram from the feeding hopper into the extrusion chamber then the main cylinder compresses the material via the main ram to extrude the material that turns into a liquid under this extreme high pressure. When the compression phase is finished, the ram retracts, a side door opens and the feed cylinder brings out the structural dry material that remained in the compression chamber. The feed ram retracts and the door closes for the next cycle.

International experts gather for final SEPARATE event
Results and future perspectives presented at conference in Gescher, Germany

SEPARATE team presents UK trial results at workshop in Peterborough

Europe’s largest waste stream is Municipal Solid Waste (MSW): the daily waste from our households. It consists of 6 main product groups: bio-waste, paper & cardboard, plastics, glass & rubble, metals and other rest waste. 

Rather than importing these valuable raw materials and resources from other parts of the world, it makes sense to re-use and recycle them efficiently. 

Bio-waste represents the biggest fraction of MSW, yet the recycling of bio-waste is still in its infancy. If treated properly, bio-waste can result in high-quality compost and biogas thus avoiding the emission of greenhouse gases and the loss of high-value material. 


Today, Europe loses 60% of its 3 billion tons of solid waste through landfilling and incineration each year. EU Directives such as the Waste Framework Directive (2008/98/EC) and the Landfill Directive (1999/31/EC) are slowly changing this situation towards a circular economy.

Moreover, in July 2014, the European Commission has released the Communication ‘Towards a Circular Economy’ and a new Legislative Proposal for Amending the Waste Directives putting forward ambitious recycling targets for 2030.


In our waste, the valuable material streams are all entangled, mixed together, contaminated. To sort dry recyclables is easy, but the real challenge is to get the organics separated from the rest of the waste. Two options exist:

Separation at source or so-called “kerbside collection”

The households are asked to sort their organic waste in specific bins. While source separation is theoretically the best means to achieve clean organic waste, the reality looks different. Mentality and culture influence the participation rate and the separation efficiency, but regardless of these, experience has shown that it is hard to implement organic kerbside collection in densely populated urban areas.

Centralised separation happens at waste treatment facilities

Due to problematic hygiene conditions and high personnel cost, manual separation of bio-waste is not an option. Mechanical separation through shredding and sieving is the most widespread method today, but its efficiency is not optimal and the high remainder of organics in the non-organic fraction and or non-organics in the organic fraction causes problems for both streams.

The innovative SEPARATE waste system overcomes these problems with an unprecedented separation efficiency: it removes 98-99% of total soluble organics from contaminated waste streams, leaving the organic fraction pure, and the non-organic fraction dried and clean. 

SEPARATE Waste Systems enable the efficient separation of MSW, separately collected bio-waste and mono-streams into a very clean organic fraction and a non-organic rest fraction.

The heart of the SEPARATE waste system is an innovative hydraulic press that achieves highest separation efficiency (98%). Mixed waste is loaded into the OREX Press and under the high pressure, the soluble organic matter behaves like a liquid and is separated from the dry fraction. The organic fraction is further cleaned to limit the remaining impurities such as plastics and inert materials to less than 0.5% of the total organic matter.

The result is a homogeneous paste that is perfectly suitable for anaerobic digestion and ensures low maintenance costs of the digesters. The cell structures of this organic material are broken up whereby a high gas yield with shorter retention times can be achieved. Short retention times are of economic importance as they reduce the investment costs for digesters. As a result of the very clean separation, a number of high-quality products can be obtained.

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