Sattler AG as inventor of the biogas storage tank

22. Mai 2012

 

Sattler AG, with its headquarters in Graz and production sites in Graz-Thondorf and Rudersdorf (Burgenland), is an Austrian company, which is known to the general public above all for the manufacture of marquee and tarpaulin fabrics.“Beside numerous other products, we have also been producing biogas storage tanks for 30 years, likewise our subsidiary CENO in […]


 

Sattler AG, with its headquarters in Graz and production sites in Graz-Thondorf and Rudersdorf (Burgenland), is an Austrian company, which is known to the general public above all for the manufacture of marquee and tarpaulin fabrics.“Beside numerous other products, we have also been producing biogas storage tanks for 30 years, likewise our subsidiary CENO in Germany. They additionally produce roofing of areas, as e.g. train stations, shopping centres, Formula I tracks or football stadiums”, said Sattler AG Chairman of the Board, Herbert Pfeilstecher.

Pfeilstecher continued: “The core competence of Sattler AG is industrial textiles. It suggests itself to also apply this competence, which we call ‘thinking high tex’, in plant engineering. Biogas as a storable renewable energy source has an enormous future potential. Sattler is the inventor of the biogas storage tank; we have continued developing the technology further. This is our contribution to environmentally friendly energy engineering, to which we dedicate ourselves with all our knowledge about special textiles and lightweight construction designs.”

With the production of biomass storage tanks, Sattler AG is currently generating an annual turnover of around 25 million Euros, which corresponds to one fifth of their overall turnover.

Significance of biogas as energy source in Austria/in Europe/worldwide
Herbert Pfeilstecher: “The significance of biogas as an alternative energy source is increasing everywhere, in particular since biogas energy, unlike photovoltaic power and wind energy, is available anytime it is required. Biogas is the only storable energy source among the renewable energies and thus has a very high potential.

Traditionally, Austria is strong in hydropower, large-scale agricultural businesses are scarce. Therewith, the share of biogas energy in Austria is smaller than in Germany, which is leading in this technological trend.”About 360 biogas plants are currently installed in Austria, which corresponds to an output of about 100 MW. Around 80 of them were manufactured by Sattler AG. A clear divide between west and east is not noticeable in Austria. However, there are more biogas plants in flatter and thus more easily utilisable regions with large application and production areas, i.e. above all in Lower Austria, Upper Austria, but also in Styria.

Atotonilco/Mexico City – the world’s biggest biogas storage plant
Christoph A. Schug, Division Manager Environmental Engineering: “Sattler is also recognised as the quality leader for biogas storage tanks. Our longstanding existence in the market verifies the value of quality products compared to products, which attempt to establish in the low price sector. The sewage treatment plant in Mexico was, as is common in this industry, advertised publically. Sattler AG with its worldwide partner network was able to secure a spot among the top suppliers, and following intensive negotiations obtained the project.”

For the sewage treatment plant in Atotonilco, Sattler AG supplies seven gas storage tanks with a financial volume of more than one million Euros. Into the technical planning of the Atotonilco project, Sattler AG invested several 100 hours of work of the highly qualified project technicians. Since the processing of the membranes is taking place by hand at high-performance machines, more than 5,000 hours of manufacturing service were required. Weaving and coating, too, are undertaken in-house; here another several 100 hours have to be calculated. The membranes and accessories were packaged fit for sea-freight at the Sattler site in Rudersdorf and collected in Graz for shipment. A total of seven containers were shipped to Mexico, and then further transported overland to their final destination. All the boxes have already arrived at the construction site unharmed.

Challenges in the production of biogas storage tanks
Christoph A. Schug: “It is important for production to manufacture the cutting as exactly as possible, since otherwise folds could be formed or out-of-roundness could occur. Though both are visual subjects only, the gas storage tank still is the eye-catcher of every plant. Particularly exciting in that is the three-dimensional shape of the gas storage tank, since it is manufactured from flat sheets. In respect of gas tightness and stability, we can fall back on our years of experience to create reliable solutions for our customers. Due to the entire value-added chain at the Sattler company, there is comprehensive know-how in the area of dealing with membrane material, in particular for welding. For this reason, too, we are up to the challenge with large-scale projects.”

Herbert Pfeilstecher:“For us, this plant in Atotonilco, the most powerful of this kind worldwide, is a showpiece project. The subject of renewable energy has become increasingly important over the past years and decades. Biogas is the only storable energy source in the sector of renewable energies, and thus has a very high potential, also here in Austria, where still too little significance is attached to the economic importance of the generation of energy by local added value.”

 

Source of information: Sattler AG/30.04.2012

 

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