Technology & Design Pupils Visit Contour Global & Coca-Cola HBC Ireland




So how much technology and science does it take to produce a bottle of Coke? To find out, a group of form 4 Technology & Design pupils traveled to Coca-Cola HBC Ireland last week.

Our first stop was to see how the power is generated for such a large plant. For this we were the guests of Contour Global. Contour Global is a power generation company who have developed and commissioned a small power plant right beside Coca-Cola HBC Ireland.


Firstly the plant provides Coca-Cola with electricity to power its bottling equipment. Secondly ContourGlobal also captures and cleans the Co2 from the burning of the natural gas in its engines and supplies it directly for making the Coke fizzy! Thirdly the plant captures the engine’s exhaust gas to provide hot water and steam. Lastly, heat recovered from the engine’s cooling system is transformed to chilled water via an absorption chiller. This four strand process is called Quad-Generation and in Lisburn provides an output capacity of 15MW, that’s 15000000 watts of power!
We saw the huge 20 cylinder engines that generated this power and felt its heat and experienced the noise it made! This was made possible as our guests timed their engine testing to coincide with our visit. Thank you!

In addition to the work in N.Ireland, we learned how ContourGlobal had used trapped methane from Lake Kivu in Kibuye, Rwanda to provide the local area with clean energy and subsequently how they had provided employment and increasing hopes of prosperity for the region. The lake incidentally is half the size of Ireland.

After lunch we walked a few hundred metres to the bottling facility. Amazingly we found ourselves in a really cool little cinema. We were to learn the history of Coca-Cola in Northern Ireland. What did we have to drink? A Coke of course. This interlude was special and totally unexpected. Coke finished, we began our tour. We saw the injection moulding machine that makes the small preforms that would later become plastic bottles. A process called blow moulding converts the preforms into full sized bottles.

We also got to hold the secretive syrup that forms the basis of Coca-Cola. The ‘7X’ as it is called smelt very strong and didn’t look that appetising. It is said that only a handful of people know its true ingredients, Having watched the bottles being filled and stood in a hallway where the pipes above our heads were full of Fanta we progressed to the canning line. 25 cans per second were being filled as we stared. Can they do that? Yes they can!

Finally to finish our day we spent some time in the visitors experience games room. This was the perfect way to end the day and our first full week back in school after the summer. Our sincere thanks to our host, Mr Lorne Kavanagh and his team for taking the time out of their busy day to facilitate us and for making us so welcome.




This is what happens….#toomuchcoke #technologyrocks

A photo posted by Rainey Endowed (@raineyendowed) on