VATIS Update Waste Management . Mar-Apr 2010

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Waste Management Mar-Apr 2010

ISSN: 0971-5665

VATIS Update Waste Management is published 4 times a year to keep the readers up to date of most of the relevant and latest technological developments and events in the field of Waste Management. The Update is tailored to policy-makers, industries and technology transfer intermediaries.

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United Nations-backed scheme to turn ‘trash into cash’

Under a new initiative backed by the United Nations, cities in the Asia and Pacific region will be able to transform waste into money. The ‘trash into cash’ scheme – unveiled by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and Waste Concern, a non-governmental organization (NGO) in Bangladesh – seeks to help solid waste development strategies become pro-poor, decentralized, low-carbon and self-financing through the sale of carbon credits.

The new programme, launched in Dhaka, Bangladesh, seeks to harness the potential of the informal waste collection sector that has demonstrated that recycling trash can be extremely profitable. Millions of people make a living from recycling waste, both from inorganic recyclable waste and organic waste that can be turned into compost and can generate initial start-up costs through carbon credits.

Waste Concern was one of the first organizations in the world to acquire carbon credits for composting under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), an arrangement under the Kyoto Protocol allowing developed countries to reduce emissions and meet global warming commitments by investing in carbon reduction projects in developing countries. Since 2005, Waste Concern, along with ESCAP and local partners, has tested and further refined the approach in Sri Lanka and Viet Nam. One compost plant serving some 1,000 households and treating 2-3 tonnes/day of waste has been built in each country, and both sites have financed themselves.

UNIDO-GEF project to phase out PCB pollutants in India

India and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) have signed a US$14.5 million project for the phase-out of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in India. This project, funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), aims to reduce or eliminate the use and release of PCBs into the environment through disposal of PCB-containing equipment and related waste through 3 pilot projects for the environmentally sound management (ESM) of PCBs in 12 states. The project will develop and implement an ESM system for PCBs and draw up an action plan for their timely phase-out from use, and finally help eliminate PCB-containing equipment and related wastes. The project will have co-financing of US$29 million and is to be implemented by the Ministry of Environment and Forests in collaboration with UNIDO.

The Central Power Research Institute (CPRI) – the only specialized Indian institution on PCB management and research with the necessary infrastructure as well as trained workforce – has been involved in the preparation of the project. The project is expected to help phase out obsolete PCB-containing equipment. This in turn will contribute to India achieving its obligations under the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs).

New rule to stop import of toxic ships

In a bid to stop import of toxic scrap ships, the Ministry of Environment and Forest of Bangladesh has decided to make submission of the ‘toxic-free certificate’ compulsory for both importers and exporters. The Environment Ministry recently asked the Ministry of Commerce to take necessary action in this regard in line with a decision taken earlier. A senior official of the Ministry said both importers and exporters would be held responsible for any polluted ship entering into the country’s territory once the rule comes to effect. Under the existing rules, only the importers have to submit a ‘toxic waste free’ certificate along with the shipping documents for clearance before importing a scrap ship.

National survey takes the lid off China pollution

China has discharged 49.15 million tonnes of industrial solid waste and 39,400 tonnes of industrial hazardous waste during the year of 2007, according to information released by Mr. Zhang Lijun, Deputy Chief of the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection, following a two-year national survey on the country’s pollution.

In 2007, in the nation’s wastewater there were 30.29 million tonnes of chemical oxygen demand (COD) – an indicator of organic and nutrient matters in wastewater – 1.73 million tonnes of ammoniacal nitrogen and 900 tonnes of heavy metals. As for exhaust gas, 23.2 million tonnes of sulphur dioxide, 17.98 million tonnes of nitrogen oxides and 19.21 million tonnes of dusts were floating in the air by 2007. The national survey – focusing on industrial and agricultural pollution, household waste and pollution control facilities – warned that the country’s water pollution cannot be solved unless agricultural pollution in rural China were addressed.

Germany to help clean Vietnamese industrial parks

Industrial wastewater can be recycled by removing toxins or used to generate energy, but Vietnamese industrial parks do not possess the wherewithal to do this, say German and Vietnamese scientists. Speaking at a conference held to introduce integrated wastewater concept for industrial zones, Prof. Karl Ulrich Rudolph of Germany’s University of Witten said most of Viet Nam’s 200 industrial zones lacked the concept and equipment for treating and reusing wastewater.

Prof. Rudolph, Director of the university’s Institute of Environmental Engineering and Management, said the concept being introduced seeks to integrate decentralized and centralized wastewater treatment systems in industrial zones.” A pilot programme to assess the concept at Tra Noc Industrial Zone in Can Tho would also remove toxic, hazardous and persistent substances from wastewater to recycle the water and generate energy from the waste. It will involve five German universities and seven Vietnamese universities and agencies, including the University of Witten, Stuttgart University, Can Tho University, Ha Noi University of Sciences (HUS) and Viet Nam Academy for Water Resources with initial funding of US$9.5 million from Germany. The University of Witten and HUS will be the coordinators.

Radiation technology for sludge treatment

In India, the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) has given its assent to a Delhi Jal Board (DJB) proposal asking for radiation technology to set up a sludge treatment plant. The DJB intends to convert waste sludge to act as an environment healer, as it can be used for both power generation and fertilizing. As the nation’s premier nuclear and radiation research institution, BARC will be providing radiation technology to help turn minerals-rich sludge into fertilizer. Sewage sludge is rich in nitrogen, potassium and phosphorus – ingredients necessary for making fertilizer.

Wastewater sludge generated by a sewage plant is very odorous and contains high levels of pathogens like bacteria and viruses, which limit the reuse of this waste. According to Mr. Santosh Vaidya, Additional CEO of DJB, “Further processing of sludge to reduce odour and pathogens is necessary. The technology offered by BARC ensures removal of pathogens with a high degree of reliability and is also commercially viable.”

Medical waste reduction focuses on technologies

A project targeting medical waste reduction in Viet Nam has kicked off, aiming to promote sustainable and economical medical waste treatment and management technologies for the country. The US$2.1 million project will demonstrate good practices and techniques for medical waste management in order to minimize or eliminate the release of persistent organic pollutants and mercury to the environment, said Mr. Nguyen Thanh Yen, Project Coordinator. The project comes under the framework of a programme funded by the Global Environment Fund with the participation of eight countries, including Argentina, India, Latvia, Lebanon, the Philippines, Senegal, Tanzania and Viet Nam. Together, the project gets support and advice from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the United Nations Development Programme.

The four-year project will focus its activities on establishing model facilities, tools and documents for medical waste management at Viet Duc Hospital in Hanoi and Ninh Binh General Hospital in northern Ninh Binh Province. Appropriate non-incineration treatment technologies will be developed and installed in waste treatment centres of the Urban Environment Company (URENCO) in Ha Noi and at selected medical units in Ninh Binh Province. The project will also establish a national training programme on waste management and building capacity, and results will be disseminated to the stockholders with the aim of encouraging replication. Hanoi’s URENCO has to treat 5 t/d of medical waste from the city’s hospitals and that each cubic metre costs more than US$500.

Waste management programme to be fast-tracked

In the Philippines, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has directed the local government units (LGUs) to facilitate the implementation of their respective solid waste management programmes. This is after DENR’s National Solid Waste Management Environmental Commission finalizes the list of candidates for the final notice to comply with Republic Act 9003 (RA 9003) or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act.

Section 37 of RA 9003 stipulates that “no open dumpsites shall be established and operated, nor any practice or disposal of solid waste by any person including LGUs, which constitute the use of open dumps for solid waste, be allowed after the effectivity of this Act: provided, that within three years after the effectivity of this Act, every LGU shall convert its open dumps into controlled dumps, in accordance with the guidelines set in Section 41 of this Act [and] provided further, that no controlled dumps shall be allowed five years following the effectivity of [the said] Act.” The list of candidates in the final notice include some 600 cities and municipalities. LGUs that are in the list will also be criminally liable under the existing solid waste management law.

Panel framing rules on e-waste disposal

With electronic and electrical waste (e-waste) emerging as the new by-products of fast economic growth, the Union Environment Ministry in India is framing rules that pin the responsibility for disposal on the producer. Eleven recycling units are expected to come up soon to take over from the unorganized sector, which currently handles this hazardous waste in the most primitive manner.

Of the 50 million tonnes of e-waste generated globally, about 400,000 t is from India, the bulk of it from television sets. “The concern is, it is growing at a rate of 10-15 per cent annually in India, whereas the global rate of growth is 3 per cent,” states Mr. Ravi Agarwal, Director, Toxics Link, a non-governmental organization working on hazardous waste. “At present, 97 per cent of this waste is being recycled in the unorganized sector.” A four-member committee has been set up to frame the rules that are expected to be notified under the Environment Protection Act (EPA). EPA will lay down penalties for flouting the rules.

A study by the Electronics Industries Association of India estimates that India has accumulated 380,000 t of electronic waste, expected to go up to 800,000 t in the next four years. The waste contains some precious metals such as gold and copper, thus making it a profitable industry. It also contains at least 51 hazardous elements and compounds, such as lead, mercury and arsenic. Presently, this waste is extracted with bare hands in the unorganized sector, posing serious health and environmental concerns. One recycling unit in the formal sector has been set up at Roorkee. There are plans to set up more in Bangalore, Mumbai and other major cities. However, there is also a need to make “clean products” that do not use toxic substances.

China issues policy on NOx emissions

China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection issued the “Notice of Fossil-Fired Power Plant Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) Emission Prevention & Treatment Policy” on 27 January 2010, according to Fuel Tech Inc. This government policy directive sets the framework for NOx reduction actions to be taken under the nation’s 12th Five-Year Plan, which begins 1 January 2011.

In general, the policy set forth in the Notice apply to all coal-fired power plants and co-generation units that are 200 MW or larger, except in the designated “Focus Areas” around Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong where it applies to all units regardless of size. For the units covered by the policy, all new, rebuilt or units that have undergone expansion should install low-NOx combustion technologies as a first step. On operating units, if the NOx emission levels still cannot meet the standard, then the unit should install flue gas de-NOx technology – selective catalytic reduction (SCR), selective non-catalytic reduction (SNCR) or SNCR-SCR system.

UNEP report: e-waste flooding developing countries

Developing countries face serious environmental and health problems from the alarming increase in hazardous e-waste, a recent report by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) warned. The report, entitled Recycling - From E-waste to Resources, listed obsolete laptop and desktop computers, printers, mobile phones, pagers, digital photo and music devices, refrigerators, toys and televisions as main sources of waste. Some key facts revealed by the report are:

* Globally, e-waste generation is growing by about 40 million tonnes a year. * Production of mobile phones and PCs consumes 3 per cent of gold and silver mined worldwide annually; 13 per cent of palladium; and 15 per cent of cobalt. * Modern electronics contain up to 60 different elements – many valuable, hazardous or both. * Worldwide, more than 1 billion mobiles phones were in use in 2007, up from 896 million in 2006. * By 2020, e-waste from old computers in South Africa and China is predicted to jump by 200 and 400 per cent, respectively, from 2007 levels, and by 500 per cent in India.


Turning plastic waste to sutures

Researchers at Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore, are developing a process to transform waste plastic bottles and bags into biodegradable surgical threads. The new process, expected to be operational in 2-3 years, involves converting waste plastic into gas by heating the material in an enclosed oxygen-free chamber. The gas is condensed into a carbon-rich oil mixture that is then used to feed bacteria that produce a biodegradable plastic called polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA) – the basic building block of biodegradable plastics like surgical threads and contact lenses.

As NTU’s Prof. Wang Jing-Yuan, who heads the group of seven researchers, says: “We hope that, upon commercialization, our process will reduce 50 per cent of the 600,000 tonnes per year of plastic waste produced in the country.” A recycling firm based in Singapore, ecoWise Group, has evinced interest in commercializing the project.

New technology for plastics separation

Niko Coatings, a manufacturer of acoustics materials in the United Kingdom, is recovering more waste material for re-use in new products by using a new plastics separation technology. Axion Engineering has helped Niko Coatings design and install an air-flow separator for its production of acoustic insulation and carpet backing materials.

The innovative machine employs a column with a series of air-flow separation points on it to sort the granulated material by sucking up the lighter material, while the heavy material moves down the column. As a result, the plastic materials are more efficiently separated and more material is recovered to make new products.

Compostable, economical bioplastic

Food packaging and other disposable plastic items could soon be composted at home along with organic waste. The key to achieving this is a new sugar-based polymer developed at Imperial College London, the United Kingdom, by a team of scientists from Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council led by Dr. Charlotte Williams. Commercial partner BioCeramic Therapeutics was also part of this team.

The chemical name for the compostable polymer is poly(acetic acid-5-acetoxy-6-oxo-tetrahydro-pyran-2-yl-methyl ester) or copoly(lactic acid-ran-acetic acid-5-acetoxy-6-oxo-tetrahydro-pyran-2-yl-methyl ester). The degradable polymer is made from sugars known as lignocellulosic biomass. The polymer has a wide range of properties, laying the field open for a larger number of applications other than renewable bioplastic packaging. Its degradable properties make it ideal for specialized medical applications such as tissue regeneration, stitches and drug delivery. The polymer has been shown to be non-toxic to cells and decomposes in the body creating harmless by-products.

“Our key breakthrough was in finding a way of using a non-food crop to form a polymer, as there are ethical issues around using food sources in this way,” said Dr. Williams. Current biorenewable plastics use crops such as corn or sugar beet. “For the plastic to be useful it had to be manufactured in large volumes, which was technically challenging. It took three-and-a-half years for us to hit a yield of around 80 per cent in a low-energy, low-water use process,” explains Dr. Williams. This is significant as the leading biorenewable plastic, polylactide, is formed in a high-energy process requiring large volumes of water. In addition, when it reaches the end of its life, polylactide must be degraded in a high-temperature industrial facility. In contrast, the oxygen-rich sugars in the new polymer allow it to absorb water and degrade to harmless products – meaning it can be tossed on the home compost heap and used to feed the garden. The new polymer is also more economical compared with conventional plastics, as it can be made from cheap materials or waste products.

Recycling robot tackles plastic problem

The newest robot in Japan could help save the environment by sorting plastic more efficiently. This will allow for more than 45 per cent of the total household plastic waste to be recycled rather than burned. Japan’s Mitsubishi, Osaka University and IDEC Corporation have teamed up to help with waste recycling problems. They have built a 1.7 × 2.1 m robot that sorts plastic using laser.

In Japan, only about 13 per cent of plastic polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and polystyrene (PS) is recycled. The robot developed can sort six different plastic types, including polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) plastics that comprise 45 per cent of the total, that are not discernible by eye and are normally burned with other refuse. The recycling robot is currently undergoing test runs. A smaller version of test runs. A smaller version of the robot for home use is under development by IDEC, with a target cost around US$55,000. The laser used by the robot was developed at the Photonics Advanced Research Centre of Osaka University. It accurately measures the reflectivity of different plastics to be able to tell them apart.

Trashed tyres turn eco-friendly

A waste management firm based in Sharjah, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), uses waste tyres to construct roads at its new state-of-the-art facility. With one of the highest number of cars per capita in the world, the UAE also scores highest on wastage of tyres in the world per capita as it has around 60 million tyres lying in landfills across the country. Beeah, a public-private waste management enterprise, has come up with an idea to convert the waste tyres into a potentially lucrative industry. The company plans to recycle tyres into an environmentally friendly material called crumb rubber that can be used to build roads and other high-utility surfaces. The company, which is half-owned by the Sharjah government, recently set up a world-class Tyre Recovery Facility (TRF), a part of the company’s overall waste management solution. The facility, the first-of-its-kind in the region and also one of the largest in the world, will produce crumb rubber that will be used as flooring product in local schools, parks, athletic facilities, municipalities and equestrian areas.

The facility grinds tyres into small rubber particles or granules, while separating the steel and fabric that are also found in tyres, and use those granules to make new rubber-based products, like pavement stones. The facility will also use tyres to produce materials that can be used in gymnasium floors, athletic tracks and sports courts.

Plastic-eating bugs could be answer for sea waste

Plastic pollution can be lethal to sea life. Not only can it choke or poison fish and sea animals, but plastic fragments can also absorb toxic chemicals from the water around them, making them even more hazardous. Microscopic life forms that congregate on tiny pieces of plastic could protect fish and other sea creatures from toxins, new research suggests. Scientists from the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) and the University of Sheffield in the United Kingdom have shown that when certain microbes colonize pieces of plastic, they create a protective film around them, potentially shielding anything that might ingest them from the worst of the toxic effects.

The research showed that this biofilm is made up only of certain types of microbes life – most showed no interest in the plastic. The scientists say that this suggests that these plastic-hungry microbes might eventually help break down the material they have colonized.

Over time, the size of plastic fragments in the sea decreases as a result of exposure to natural forces. Dr. Mark Osborn, senior lecturer in the Department of Animal and Plant Sciences at the University of Sheffield, said: “Our research is revealing the potential for marine microbes to colonise plastics and to potentially degrade these key environmental pollutants.” Ph.D. student Mr. Jesse Harrison said: “Microbes play a key role in the sustaining of all marine life and are the most likely of all organisms to break down toxic chemicals, or even plastics themselves.”

New recycling system for heavily printed plastics

Austrian recycling machinery firm Erema has launched the TVEplus system for recycling heavily printed plastics. The company reports that TVEplus is three times more efficient at removing gases from the inks, binding agents and additives used in some materials. The plastic can only then be recycled, as contaminating materials that survive can cause bubbles and blisters, rendering the recycled product unusable.

In the basic Erema recycling system, scrap material is compressed and pre-warmed before it is blended to produce a melt. This is then fed directly to the extruder screw. In TVEplus series, the melt filters are placed ahead of a degassing system. TVEplus can handle throughputs from 250 kg/h to 2,500 kg/h.


Processes for CRT recycling

CRT Heaven Ltd., the United Kingdom, offers various processes for use in recycling cathode ray tubes (CRTs). In the dismantling process, the CRT-containing product is dismantled to prepare the CRT for recycling. It also facilitates the recovery of other valuable TV and monitor components. The company can supply dismantling stations and conveyors to optimize the dismantling process.

In the CRT cutting process, the CRT is placed and secured on a vacuum pad. The height of the CRT is set through the control panel and then the automated process cuts the entire circumference of the tube, ensuring the complete separation of leaded funnel and unleaded panel glass. The screen, or panel glass, is moved into the phosphor removal module. This module is equipped with a hand-held vacuum hose for the removal of phosphor coatings and a powerful extraction and filtration system for the prevention of damage to human health or the environment. The filtration system deposits the phosphor into a sealed container for appropriate disposal.

The Glass Devil accepts either funnel or panel glass to culletize the glass and clean off the glass coatings. This fully automated system will turn out a product that meets the specifications of the end users and purchasers of the glass. The dry process takes place within an enclosed chamber with sufficient air extraction and dust collection. Contact: CRT Heaven Limited, Commerce Way, Walrow Industrial Estate, Highbridge, Somerset TA9 4AG, United Kingdom. Tel: +44 (1278) 786 641; E-mail: enquiries Source:

An environmentally correct recycling solution

Total Union PCB Recycle Ltd. from Hong Kong, China, and its associates have developed and patented what it claims as the most advanced high-speed vortex dissociating technology for the separation and complete recycling of waste printed circuit boards (PCBs).

Roughly crushed PCBs are directed into a high-speed vortex, where a specially designed metal cavity enables metals and non-metals to collide and separate into a resin powder and a metal concentrate. The whole process is contained in a fully enclosed production line, thus causing no secondary pollution in the course of production. The process yields two materials: a resin powder and a metal concentrate. The metal concentrate has a copper content greater than 96 per cent and the resin powder has a metal content of less than 0.5 per cent, enabling their utilization as raw materials. Total Union equipment comes in three sizes: RPCB 3000 processes 700 kg/h, RPCB 1500 processes 300 kg/h, and RPCB 800 processes 150 kg/h. Power consumption is 350, 389 and 400 kW/h/tonne, respectively. Contact: Total Union PCB Recycle Ltd., DD134 Lot 260 Lung Kwu Tan, Tuen Mun NT, Hong Kong. Tel: +852 2613 8339; Fax: +852 2613 8332; E-mail: mail@

Cell phone recycling

In the United States, eRecycling Corps aims to get rid of 65,000 t of e-waste (cell phones) by recycling. The company plans to achieve this objective by partnering with major cell service providers in a comprehensive buy-back recycling programme. The company has put in place a system that allows customers to recycle their cell phones at the same place they most likely purchased them: carrier retail stores. By deploying a web-based platform that integrates directly into the point of sale at these stores, the recycling programme works with carriers to offer customers trade-in incentives and strict privacy control along with the opportunity to significantly reduce downstream e-waste.

Sprint is the first major national carrier to adopt the eRecycling Corps programme, currently in use at 1,100 company owned Sprint stores and 1,400 Sprint Preferred Dealers as well as through its on-line channels. Through Sprint, customers receive an instant account credit for trading in eligible wireless devices (which also helps the company by encouraging people to renew their contracts with the buyback incentive, rather than going elsewhere with their business). Sprint’s goal is to achieve 90 per cent recycling and reuse rate on wireless devices by the year 2017.

Pre-treatment for separation of metals from waste PCBs

The Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, Republic of Korea, reports an invention related to a method for recovering valuable metals contained in printed circuit boards (PCBs) of waste electronic machine, and more particularly, to a method for recovering metals of value from waste PCBs. The process is claimed to achieve a metal recovery ratio of 99.99 per cent.

The main process steps are: * The cut waste PCBs are stirred in an organic solvent to separate the metal and plastic parts; * The separated metal and plastic are filtered out, cleaned and dried; and * The metal is recovered from the mixture of metal and plastic using an electrostatic separation process.

The organic solvent loosens the parts and makes the separation of metal and plastic easier. Further, the process minimizes equipment space by eliminating unnecessary process steps. Contact: Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, #30, Gajeong-dong, Yuseong-gu, Daejeon 305-350, Republic of Korea.

Recovery of copper and iron from PCB waste sludge

Researchers at the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, China, and AECOM, the United States, have jointly evaluated the industrial application potential of a process for metal recovery from the printed circuit board (PCB) waste sludge by using ultrasound. The process can effectively recover heavy metals at low cost with high separation and recovery efficiency, produce high-quality products and also achieve zero waste discharge with operation at industrial scale. With the PCB waste sludge containing (wet content) 3.14-4.85 per cent copper and 3.71-4.23 per cent iron, copper recovery efficiency of 95.2-97.5 per cent and iron recovery efficiency of 97.1-98.5 per cent have been achieved, while the purity of copper sulphate produced by the process was 98.0 per cent and the produced ferric chloride had sufficient quality for use as a coagulant material for the plant on-site wastewater treatment. The process was successfully scaled up to industrial-scale applications in a heavy metal recovery plant more than two years. Contact: Mr. Fengchun Xie, Department of Chemistry, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, South China University of Technology, Wushan, Guangzhou 510640, China. Or Mr. Yang Ma, AECOM, 1501 Quail Street, Newport Beach, CA 92660, California, United States of America.

Recycling of metals and non-metals from waste PCB

Researchers at Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, have devised a new electrostatic separator for recycling metals and non-metals from waste printed circuit boards (PCBs). The conventional roll-type corona electrostatic separator has some issues on its industrial application related to the disposal of the middling products of separation process; balancing production capacity and separation efficiency; separation of the fine granular mixture; and the stability of separation process.

The new “two-roll-type corona electrostatic separator” addresses the above-said limitations. The experimental data show that the results of the process have improved with the use of the new separator. On comparison with the conventional machine, the mass of conductive products increased by up to 10 per cent, while the mass of the middling products decreased 45 or 31.7 per cent, depending on the product. The production capacity of the new machine increased, and the stability of the separation process was enhanced. Contact: Mr. Wu Jiang, School of Environmental Science & Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, 800 Dong chuan Road, Shanghai, China. E-mail: zmxu@

Recycling plant for cathode ray tube television receivers

Merloni Progetti S.p.A., Italy, has obtained a European patent for its plant that recycles cathode ray tubes (CRTs), particularly the glass material, from television receivers. The plant comprises:

* A cone breaking equipment for the separation of the cone glass in a crushed form from the uncrushed screen glass; * Grinding equipment downstream the said cone breaking equipment; * Means to remove iron and separate glass material through blowing; and * Means to wash the glass material that separates out. Contact: Merloni Progetti S.p.A., Viale Certosa, 247, 20151 Milano, Italy.


Dioxins monitoring system generates better emissions data

A new dioxin monitoring system has been developed by market-leading company TCR Tecora, Italy. Current portable dioxins sampling equipment merely provides a ‘snapshot’ of the process from which it is not possible to quantify mass emissions. TCR Tecora decided to develop a system that would be permanently installed on a stack and would be able to sample for much longer periods.

The new system, known as dioxins emissions continuous sampling (DECS) system, has received the approval of TUV and the Monitoring CERTification Scheme (MCERTS). DECS was developed to mimic exactly the manual sampling methods and to comply with European and United States standards.

The DECS sampling unit is permanently installed on a stack and operates automatically, which means that less labour is involved in the sampling process and the procedure is fully automatic. Thus, there is less opportunity for error and the operations do not need any trained expert. According to TCR Tecora, as a permanently installed fixture, DECS is less costly than occasional sampling. Furthermore, a control unit installed on-site can operate up to four samplers, thereby reducing the costs per stack even further. Remote access is available via the Internet or intranet.

Pre-treatment technique for PCB analysis

One of the persistent organic pollutants, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), was once widely used as dielectric fluids and for other applications. Fast, simple and accurate determination of PCB concentration is essential to properly evaluate the risks of vast number of PCB wastes.

Researchers at the Metrology Institute of Japan have synthesized a sulphoxide residue and ammonium ion-bonded silica stationary phase for liquid chromatography, and examined its ability to separate PCB from mineral oil matrices. After the stationary phase separation, major PCB congeners in samples of insulating oil containing Japanese legal regulation level of PCB (0.5 mg total PCB/kg) were determined with a gas chromatograph/quadrupole mass spectrometry system. The method is much faster and requires less hazardous chemicals compared with the Japanese official method for PCB analysis. Because of its effectiveness, the stationary phase has been commercialized by a private company. The potential of the stationary phase for separation of other pollutants – such as polyaromatic hydrocarbons, dioxins, brominated flame retardant and heavy metals – has also been demonstrated by other laboratories. Contact: Mr. Masahiko Numata, Metrology Institute of Japan, National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan. E-mail:

Method of treating exhaust gas

NGK Insulators Ltd., Japan, has patented a method of removing dioxins from exhaust gas, including the steps of introducing carbon nanotubes into a stream of the dioxin-containing exhaust gas and sorbing dioxins on the carbon nanotubes. In one embodiment of the present invention, carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are used as a sorbent to remove dioxin from an exhaust gas. In another embodiment of this invention, a method of removing dioxin from an exhaust gas includes the steps of introducing CNTs into a stream of the dioxin-containing exhaust gas, and sorbing dioxin on the CNTs.

The inventors discovered that CNTs sorb dioxin more strongly than activated carbon and thus, can be used effectively as a sorbent of dioxin contained in exhaust gas. Additionally, since dioxin desorbs at a higher temperature from CNTs than from activated carbon, it is easier and more effective to decompose the dioxin during the post-sorption treatment step to remove the dioxin from the sorbent material. The CNT used in the present invention could be the single-wall or multi-wall variety. The walls are typically comprised of hexagonal arrays of carbon atoms in graphene sheets that surround the tube axis. It is believed that a strong interaction between the benzene ring of dioxin and the surface of the carbon sheet is responsible for the strong sorption feature.

Removal of polychlorinated dioxins

Researchers at Toyohashi University of Technology in Japan have used a semi-aerobic, mesophilic, fed-batch composting (FBC) reactor loaded with household garbage to remove polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins/dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs).

The reactor was packed with woodchips as the solid matrix and soil or fly-ash contaminated with PCDD/F- soil or fly-ash and then operated at a waste-loading rate of 0.5 kg/d (wet wt). All congeners of PCDD/Fs (initial concentration, 200-830 pmol/g, dry wt.) were fully reduced over the period of operation, with a half reduction time of 4 months. Direct cell counting and respiratory quinone profiling showed that the reactors at the fully acclimatized stage harboured a high density of bacteria (1,011/g, dry wt.), members of the Actinobacteria being predominant. Real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) showed that the population of Dehalococcoides and its phylogenetic relatives of Chloroflexi as the possible dechlorinators varied between 107/g to 108/g (dry wt).

A Dehalococcoides-containing dechlorinating culture from the soil-treating reactor was successfully enriched with a model PCDD/F compound, fthalide. 16S rRNA gene-targeted PCR-denaturated gradient gel electrophoresis and clone library analyses showed that this culture consisted of at least three major phylogenetic groups of bacteria – Acidaminobacter, Dehalococcoides and Rhizobium. These results suggest that the semi-aerobic FBC process is applicable for the bioremediation of PCDD/Fs and possibly other halo-organic compounds with the biostimulation of Dehalococcoides and its relatives as the potent dechlorinators. Contact: Mr. Akira Hiraishi, Department of Ecological Engineering, Toyohashi University of Technology, Toyohashi 441-8580, Japan. E-mail: hiraishi@eco.tut.

A better way to test for dioxins

Around the world, awareness about dioxin contamination in the environment is on the rise. Amid this growing awareness, the only reliable analytical option to measure dioxin toxicity has been the GC-MS technique – a method burdened by high labour costs, slow turn-arounds and expensive equipment. In contrast, Procept® from Eichrom Technologies, the United States, is a dioxin assay that is much faster and more affordable with the power to measure toxicity directly.

Procept delivers some of the lowest dioxin detection limits among competitive dioxin screening tests. Its user-friendly methodology is ideal for use in analytical chemistry labs. It doesn’t use live cells, and there is no need for tissue culture infrastructure. Procept’s benefits include:

* 24 to 48 hour turn-around; * 1 ppt detection limit; * Easy sample preparation; * Ah receptor technology; * Chemistry laboratory compatible; and * Much cheaper than GC-MS test.

The Procept Rapid Dioxin Assay detects dioxin and dioxin-like compounds present in a test sample. The dioxin compounds activate the Ah Receptor (AhR) to a form that binds DNA. The activated complex is trapped onto a micro-well and the receptor-bound DNA is amplified by a polymerase chain reaction (PCR).

PCR performs repeated temperature gradient cycles in which the DNA in the sample well is replicated. A fluorescent dye is used to monitor the amount of DNA in the sample. The value of threshold cycle (Ct) – the cycle number in which the fluorescence is above background – is inversely related to the amount of DNA in the well and the amount of dioxin in the original sample. A standard curve is constructed by plotting dioxin concentration vs. Ct. Using this curve, the concentration of dioxin of the sample can be predicted from the Ct of the sample. Because the Procept Rapid Dioxin Assay, like reporter gene screening techniques, is based on the Ah Receptor interaction with dioxin, the test approximates a direct measurement of toxicity in the sample. Contact: Eichrom Technologies LLC, 1955 University Lane, Lisle, Illinois, IL 60532, United States of America. Tel: +1 (630) 963 0320; Fax: +1 (630) 963 1928; E-mail: info@eichrom. com.

Effect of ultrasound on removal of POPs from soils

A new and promising technology is the utilization of sonochemistry on decontamination of polluted soil. A research team led by Ms. Reena Shrestha from University of Kuopio, Finland, investigated the feasibility of this technology for the treatment of different types of soils – synthetic clay, natural farm clay, and kaolin – contaminated by two major persistent organic pollutants: phenanthrene, derived from coal tar melts, and hexachlorobenzene, a fungicide.

The soils were highly contaminated to the extent of 500 mg/kg. The laboratory experiments were conducted under various conditions, such as moisture, power and time duration. The effects of these parameters on ultrasonication (as well as the removal of contaminants) were examined. The reasonable moisture ratio of the slurry could be in range of 2:1-3:1. The process did not change the pH values of soils. Experimental results showed that ultrasonication has a potential to reduce the high concentrations of these POPs. Contact: Ms. Reena A. Shrestha, University of Kuopio, Department of Environmental Sciences, Laboratory of Applied Environmental Chemistry, Patteristonkatu 1, 50100 Mikkeli, Finland. E-mail:


Nanotubes used in wastewater colourant removal

Researchers at University of Tabriz, Iran, have produced an electrode from carbon nanotubes to remove colourants from industrial wastewaters. Mr. Mahmoud Zarei, one of the researchers, explains: “First, we fabricated polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) carbon nanotube and PTEF graphite electrodes to be used as cathodes. Then, we measured the hydrogen peroxide produced by the two mentioned electrodes through electrolysis. After that, we removed C.I. Basic Yellow 2 pollutant from contaminated waters by the fabricated electrodes.”

The results have shown that hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) produced by carbon nanotube electrode is about three times and 30 times greater than that of carbon electrode and graphite electrode, respectively. Images of electrode surfaces taken using scanning electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy imply an increase in the contact area of carbon nanotube electrode and more production of H2O2.

Mr. Zarei said that C.I. Basic Yellow 2 removal efficiency by the carbon nanotube electrode through proxy coagulation process is about 96 per cent in the first 10 minutes of electrolysis. During this period, C.I. Basic Yellow 2 removal efficiency by carbon electrode through electric coagulation, electro-Fenton and coagulation proxy were 21, 53 and 62 per cent, respectively. This reveals the high capability of carbon nanotube in colourant removal. The key result of the present study is the increase in H2O2 production, leading to shortening of electrolysis time and process costs reductions.

Green process cleans oily wastewater

ABB, the Switzerland-based multi-national group, has developed a revolutionary water treatment technology that cleans oily wastewater quickly, cost-effectively and energy-efficiently, ready for discharge with zero environmental impact. The new technology is installed at three oil and gas fields in North Africa where it has achieved some remarkable results and reportedly exceeded the customer’s targets in terms of the quality of water treated and released as effluent.

Oily wastewater, or produced water, is brought to the surface from underground formations during oil and gas production. It is by far the largest source of waste produced by the oil and gas industry, and its management presents considerable issues and costs to operators. About 7-10 barrels of produced water is generated for each barrel of oil. The water can be highly toxic and contains oil, grease and other hydrocarbons, as well as high levels of salts, metals and trace elements.

Compared with existing technologies for treating produced water, the ABB solution has proved more effective not only in terms of process results but in critical areas like cost, energy efficiency, footprint, speed of installation and ease of operation. The process is claimed to have exceeded the customer’s specifications for hydrocarbon content and concentration of suspended solids in the outlet water by 7 and 55 times, respectively. Other benefits of the solution include compact footprint, the use of chemicals that can easily be produced on-site using inexpensive base ingredients, ease of installation (built on skids and then transported to the site for installation and commissioning), and ease of operation (employs standard equipment and requires no complex skills or operator experience).

Next-generation wastewater treatment

An advanced, modular wastewater treatment and recycling system – using technology originally designed for the United States’ military and the oil and gas industry – is now available for cities, industries and other users. Global Water Group, the United States-based manufacturer of advanced water processing systems, employs an advanced extended aeration/activated sludge wastewater treatment system that processes water in half the time of conventional aeration systems. The wastewater treatment system, using modular units, operates in tandem with a separate recycling unit and a purification unit. The end result is recycled water that is reportedly unsurpassed in purity and taste. Even with three integrated systems, the Global Water modular units are cost-competitive with other treatment systems. The units also are easy to maintain and operate. Global Water’s proprietary extended aeration-recycling systems are applicable for flows of a few thousand litres to tens of millions of litres per day. These modular systems are suitable for municipalities, villages, condominiums, restaurants, hotels, motels, schools, oil field platform rigs, or just any place where sewage processing is required. These units can be constructed of standard configurations or custom-engineered for special configurations. Common features include: no sludge to dispose and an effluent that meets WHO potability standards. Contact: Global Water Group Inc., No. 8601 Sovereign Row, Dallas, TX 75247, United States of America. Tel: +1 (214) 6789 866; Fax: +1 (214) 6789 811; E-mail:; Website:

MBR technology for treating refinery wastewater

Members of the Petroleum Environmental Research Forum (PERF), a global research and development joint venture with many petroleum industry corporations as members, have selected Germany’s Siemens Water Technologies to provide a Petro membrane bioreactor (MBR) pilot unit to test the viability of such technology in treating refinery wastewater. This will be one of the first full-scale MBR processes in operation for treating refinery wastewater in the world. The results of this pilot testing will help determine the effectiveness and robustness of MBR treatment compared with conventional biological treatment of these types of wastewater. The commercial-size Petro MBR pilot unit will run for six to nine months at a PERF site in the United States.

Specifically designed to meet the goals of petroleum and chemical industry operators with flexibility and ease of operation, the Petro MBR system from Siemens combines an activated sludge biological treatment process with an innovative membrane filtration system. A unique fluid renewal process evenly distributes liquid, solids and air within the membrane modules in the system. The system is suitable for a wide range of petrochemical, refinery and production water treatment applications including water reuse, upgrades and retrofits. Contact: Dr. Rainer Schulze, Siemens, Germany. Tel: +49 (9131) 7-44544; Fax: +49 (9131) 7-25074; E-mail:

Breakthrough “Green” technology

In the United States, Heartland Technology Partners LLC (HTP) and Converted Organics Inc. (COI) have entered into an exclusive licensing agreement under which COI will utilize HTP’s LM-HT™ Concentrator technology in the country’s industrial wastewater market. The scope of the market involves the treatment of waters that have been contaminated by anthropogenic industrial or commercial activities, prior to their reuse or release into the environment. A breakthrough wastewater treatment process, the patented LM-HT Concentrator reduces carbon emissions compared with traditional technologies by using waste heat and renewable energy as thermal fuel.

Besides significant environmental benefits, the use of LM-HT Concentrator offers certain federal financial incentives. These make the technology appealing to potential customers in a variety of industries, such as petrochemical, pharmaceutical, manufacturing, metal processing, food preparation, transportation and energy production. The flexible fuel source and zero liquid discharge aspects of the LM-HT Concentrator technology enable it to be placed in strategic locations of a client’s choosing, potentially eliminating transportation costs and reducing associated greenhouse gases emissions. Contact: Converted Organics Inc., 137 A Lewis Wharf, Boston, Massachusetts, MA 02110, United States of America. Tel: +1 (877) 665 0444; Fax: +1 (617) 624 0333.

Flocculating agents

The Integrated Engineers from the United States offers Floccin™ line of flocculating agents – a series of products designed to remove most contaminants from wastewater such as biological oxygen demand (BOD), total suspended solids (TSS), heavy metals, colourants (inks, pigments and dyes), phosphates, emulsified fats, oil and grease. These flocculating agents encapsulate contaminants in strong floc, producing a waste sludge that easily dewaters. The treated water can often be reused or discharged directly to sewer.

Floccin is a proprietary technology with a broad treatment spectrum that replaces traditional chemistry, is non-hazardous and simplifies the treatment process. The customized Floccin flocculating agent blends provide a multitude of reactions for wastewater treatment that simultaneously coagulate, break emulsified oils in water, change the pH, encapsulate the metals and flocculate to separate the solids from the waste stream resulting in the ultimate flocculation. Process time is reduced resulting in fast wastewater treatment, thereby increasing throughput. Compared with traditional wastewater treatment, Floccin offers: * Reduced quantity of chemicals; * Reduced costs; * Enhanced BOD/TSS removal; * Works over broader pH ranges (4 to 12); * Increased settling rates; * Higher hydraulic capacity; * Improved floc shear and mixing; * Larger floc size; and * Sludge leachability tests with reduced environmental liability.

Contact: Integrated Engineers Inc., 40308 Greenwood Way, Oakhurst, California, CA 93644, United States of America. Tel: +1 (559) 683 8284; Fax: +1 (559) 683 8913; E-mail:

Treatment of complex industrial wastewater

Bio Pure Technology (BPT), Israel, specializes in advanced membrane-based separation solutions which address the particular needs of the water and wastewater treatment as well as chemical process industries. Industrial wastewater treatment requires unique solutions that enable high efficiency. In general, industrial wastewater streams are complex mixtures of hazardous minerals and organic substances dissolved in water. Industries generating such wastewater streams need to install dedicated onsite wastewater treatment plants to reduce the hazardous contaminants in the discharge water to limit values.

The Hybrid Membrane Technology (HMT™) system from BPT provides a full solution for the treatment of complex industrial wastewater. This membrane-based system is specially designed for treating industrial wastewater containing hazardous organic matter, minerals and organic solvents. HMT aims to recover from wastewater as much high-quality water as possible (80-90 per cent) for reuse in the factory. The process also strives to produce low-volume streams of highly purified and concentrated minerals, which can be either sold as valuable salt or easily disposed into evaporation ponds. The residue that remains would be minimum-sized concentration of organic substances (less than 3 per cent of wastewater volume) for final disposal by oxidation or incineration. Other key advantages of HMT are:

* Handles all types of industrial wastewater, containing the most strictly controlled contaminants; * Can be installed upstream or downstream of biological wastewater treatment plant; * Offers lower total cost of ownership than alternative solutions; and * Features simple installation and full automation.

Contact: Bio Pure Technology Ltd., 12, Hachoma Street, Park Giron, Rishon-Lezion, 75655, Israel. Tel: +972 (3) 9516000; Fax: +972 (3) 9510005.

Environment-friendly technology for waste treatment

Chemsearch, a United States-based global corporation that provides industrial maintenance and cleaning solutions in 55 countries, has announced the availability of one of its key technologies in the Philippines. The Chemsearch BioAmp, a patented biological delivery system, is now available as a wastewater treatment programme from Chemsearch Phil.

The environment-friendly BioAmp technology for wastewater treatment is ideal for correction of poor wastewater parameters, reduction of fat, oil and grease build-up, and odour correction in drainage systems like sewage treatment plants, grease traps and septic tanks at half the cost of other bacteria-based treatments. This system is installed by a team of application experts who are highly trained to meet the maintenance and environmental compliance goals of customers. The system is currently being used by many multinational corporations, agricultural corporations and colleges. BioAmp is an on-site microbial fermentation and delivery system that produces a very high quantity of active, naturally occurring bacteria, automatically every day. The system delivers 31 trillion live, vegetative Pseudomonas and Bacillus bacterial cells every 24 h at one-tenth the cost of other commercial dry powder or liquid bacterial formulations. Moreover, BioAmp allows manufacturing facilities to bring the wastewater treatment facilities in-house and treat the wastewater before it is discharged into the sewer system. Contact: Chemsearch, the Philippines. Tel: +63 (2) 6874 839; Website:


Ceramic fibre technology for hot gas filtration

Tri-Mer Corp., the United States, has introduced “UltraTemp Filtration”, a hot gas filtration system that filters fine particulate to extremely low levels. The heart of the UltraTemp Hot Gas Filtration system is a new generation of ceramic filters. Earlier generations of ceramic filters – sometimes called “candle” filters – were produced using high-density granular powders similar to common ceramic products. While effective, they were brittle, with low thermal shock resistance, and were prone to cracking and breakage from thermal shock. As a further drawback, these older ceramic filters were sometimes hard to keep clean under continuous operation. Now, with advances in fibre and ceramic technology, these issues have been overcome.

The filters used in the Tri-Mer UltraTemp Filtration system are manufactured from a new generation of low-density ceramic fibres that provide extremely high resistance to thermal shock. This makes the filters ductile and resistant to crack formation. The unique composition of the ceramic fibres give the UltraTemp filters an exceptional ability to capture fine particulates at the fibre surface, without binding. They are thus easy to clean using standard pulse-jet techniques. Being fibrous, rather than granular, the filter elements are also light-weight and very robust for installation and handling. They have high porosity with low resistance to flow, minimizing the number of elements required for any given application.

The UltraTemp Filtration system provides optimal filtration for gases between 205°C and 540°C, and in most cases can be applied to hot gas streams that have a maximum operating temperature of 900°C. Typical filtration results are 0.001 grain/dscf (2 mg/Nm3); many results are a fraction of this typical value. UltraTemp Filtration is compatible with heavy inlet loadings, often above 1 grain/dscf (2,300 mg/Nm3). Certain applications involving three or four times this inlet loading still achieve outlet levels less the 0.001 grains/dscf. The ceramic filters are almost completely chemically inert and highly corrosion-resistant.

Innovative process to reduce NOx emissions

Researchers at Dupont, based in the United States, who designed an innovative process to reduce nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions were awarded the Engineering Excellence Award. The plant in Texas had to achieve reductions of emissions to meet environmental limits, improve product quality and allow a key on-site refinery customer to shut down sulphur recovery units. The known solution to reduce NOx to acceptable levels would cost US$12-$15 million and require an 18-month construction period because it would involve the installation of an additional furnace for the plant’s two operating lines.

Using computational fluid dynamic and chemical process modelling, the Dupont team developed an innovative plan that required less than half the investment and took half the time for implementation. They designed modifications to the existing combustion chamber for each of the two operating lines, requiring back-to-back production line shutdowns. Communications kept the refinery customers well aware of the project’s progress. In less than nine months, the plant met its annual NOx emissions requirements and demonstrated its ability to operate at maximum feed rates from the refinery. Significantly improved product quality met the original project commitments. This project has potential application for other Clean Technology offerings. The benefit to the Clean Technologies business was US$10 million pre-tax operating income (PTOI). This solution allowed the refinery customer to idle operation of its sulphur recovery units in less-than-expected time at less-than-expected cost and proved that Dupont has the capabilities needed to design and implement successful technologies at other locations in the future.

Reducing NOx emissions from engine exhaust

Umicore Autocat USA Inc. from the United States is patenting a method for reducing nitrogen oxides (NOx) in vehicle exhaust by alternating exhaust flow between two lean NOx traps and directing the emerging exhaust to a downstream selective catalytic reduction (SCR) system. While exhaust predominantly flows through one of the lean NOx traps, a reductant in the other NOx trap produces ammonia that is also directed to the SCR system.

A valve system allows flow through the first lean NOx trap while limiting flow through the second NOx trap, and allows flow through the second lean NOx trap while limiting flow through the first NOx trap. The valve system also regulates the flow of reductants to the first and second NOx traps. An exhaust system is also provided. Contact: Umicore Autocat USA Inc., Aubum Hill, Michigan, United States of America.

Gas scrubber for sulphur dioxide emissions

In the United States, Bionomic Industries Inc., a leading manufacturer of cutting-edge scrubber systems technology, has successfully installed an advanced “fluidized slurry” sulphur dioxide (SO2) gas scrubber at a facility. The compact and highly efficient scrubber utilizes Bionomics’ patented RotaBed™ technology to harness the movement of flue gas to provide both mixing and gas cleaning – instead of the power-wasting spray nozzles found in older scrubbers to distribute the limestone. The scrubber’s unique design places more of the limestone in effective contact with the flue gas, allows higher density slurry recycling than other technologies and serves to reduce scaling. A slow rotation is imparted to the limestone/flue gas mixture to stabilize the slurry in the scrubber and the operation functions at more than twice the gas speed of spray-type devices.

Bionomic Industries provided the scrubber and all ancillary equipment including the system’s specially designed forced oxidation sump. This agitated, dual compartment sump mixes and retains the scrubbing slurry and produces calcium sulphate (gypsum) as a by-product. Rubber-lined centrifugal pumps pull the slurry from the sump and recycle it to the low-pressure (under 5 psig) headers mounted in the scrubber. The system fully meets all local and federal emissions codes, is available in shop-built units up to 110,000 acfm and is ideally suited for small to moderate size SO2 control projects. Field erected units are also available for larger gas volume applications. Contact: Bionomic Industries Inc., 777 Corporate Drive, Mahwah, NJ 07430, United States of America. Tel: +1 (201) 5291 094; Fax: +1 (201) 5290 252; E-mail:; Website:

New CO2 ‘scrubber’ from ingredient in hair-conditioners

Chemical relatives of ingredients in hair-conditioners and fabric softeners show promise as a material to fight global warming by “scrubbing” carbon dioxide (CO2) out of flue gases from coal-burning electric power generating stations. According to a report on the use of these aminosilicones in CO2 capture, concluded that the material has the potential to remove 90 per cent of CO2 from simulated flue gas. Aminosilicones may be less expensive and more efficient than current technologies for reducing emissions of CO2, the main greenhouse gas linked to global warming, the scientists led by Dr. Rober Perry of GE Global Research, the United States, say.

In laboratory tests using a device to simulate flue gas conditions of continuously streaming gas and associated temperatures, the new material captured more than 90 per cent of the CO2 added to the system. If future tests at the pilot scale in a power plant prove successful, the material would be used as part of a larger, active absorber system. In this scenario, the liquid aminosilicone solvent will absorb CO2 and be transferred to a desorption unit where CO2 would be removed from the aminosilicone and sequestered. The aminosilicone solvent would be recycled to react with more CO2-rich flue gas.

Verification of exhaust gas treatment system

An exhaust gas treatment system that uses water with increased alkalinity has shown impressive results. Singapore-based Ecospec Global Technology Pte. Ltd. reports that American Bureau of Shipping (ABS) issued a statement on 8 February 2010 verifying the results of sulphur dioxide (SO2), carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrogen oxide (NOx) removal from the emissions of a 100,000 dwt Aframax tanker installed with the Ecospec’s CSNOx gas abatement system. In the first load point verifications onboard the Aframax, at 50 per cent gas load (equivalent to about 5 MW engine output), ABS issued a Statement of Fact on the performance of CSNOx system that showed reductions of 98.6-98.9 per cent in SO2, 76.5-77.1 per cent in CO2 and 64.5-66.2 per cent in NOx burning 380 cSt fuel with a 3.64 per cent sulphur content.

In the CSNOx system freshwater or seawater is first fed into an Ultra-Low Frequency Electrolysis System (ULFELS) to make it alkaline and ready for scrubbing. The alkaline water is then pumped through the exhaust stack to scrub the flue gas. The CSNOx-treated water is highly reactive and effective in removing CO2, SO2 and NOx through absorption. The removed pollutants are converted into harmless substances found naturally in the water. After scrubbing, the scrubbed water may pass for recovery through a solid-liquid separator to remove solid particles.


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