Air-beam Roller Stockpile Cover (ARSC)

ARSC covers materials you can’t walk on – if you want to cover materials that are not load-bearing (such as biosolids, sewage sludge, grain, industrial organic wastes, manure) an Air-beam Roller Stockpile Cover is the answer – you simply roll it out across the stockpile.  You can walk on the ARSC even when it would be impossible to walk on the stockpile it is covering.

ARSC stockpiles do not re-wet, which means they do not slump or spread.  In the case of soil improvers for land application, they are as good (or better) when they come out of an ARSC stockpile as when they went in.  The geotextile lets water vapour out, which means the surface dries.  

ARSC stockpiles do not smell – the geotextile contains all odours.  There might still be odour when a stockpile is spread, but at least that is transient and can be managed by rapid incorporation.

Airbeam Roller

When the ARSC was rolled back this stockpile was dry and odour-free and the underside of the ARSC was clean.

ARSC improves legal compliance – UK law requires that a stockpile is “secure in relation to waste kept in it” and this is achieved “if all reasonable precautions are taken to ensure that the waste cannot escape from it and members of the public are unable to gain access to the waste”.  Other countries have similar requirements: some even stipulate covering.  If a person or animal got into an open stockpile, or if it were to move or cause pollution by run-off, it would be difficult to argue in defence that the stockpile had been secure.

ARSC reduces haulage costs - if the risk of movement or odour currently restricts the siting of stockpiles to shallow gradients, remote from neighbours, ARSC will give you greater freedom of choosing sites and hence access to more land.

ARSC withstands strong winds – it has an integral system of ccontinuous ground anchoring that stops the wind getting underneath and moving it.  This ground anchoring also stops rainwater running off the ARSC and back under the cover.

Gale force gusty wind peaking at force 8-9 (40 knots, 48 mph, 74 km/h) and rain had no effect on this ARSC and its stockpile
ARSC and stockpile

ARSC is portable and reusable - it can be used in field situations or configured for a fixed facility.  The materials themselves have a normal life of at least 5 years outdoors with exposure to sunlight.

ARSC is not expensive – the price of an ARSC depends on its size and the quantity ordered, e.g. 10 or more would enable less expensive fabrication.  For example an ARSC to cover a stockpile 25 m x 25 m would add less than 1 / m3 for 5 uses of the cover.  By 15 uses this comes down to about 0.50 / m3.  This includes the initial cost and the labour and equipment for deploying and recovering the ARSC.  On the same basis the cost for straw bale containment is approximately 1.75 / m3 every time, and it is much less effective.  The cost of ARSC is easily offset, by savings in haulage and spreading, stockpile deterioration, alternative forms of containment and legal fees depending on circumstances.