VATIS Update Waste Management . Nov-Dec 2003

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Waste Management Nov-Dec 2003

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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World Bank report on pollution in Indonesia

According to the World Banks first environmental report on Indonesia, unrestrained dumping of hazardous industrial and fecal waste, as well as other pollutants and acid rain are having a devastating impact on the environment and people. The Banks Indonesia Environment Monitor 2003 report states that one-third of children are at risk of serious damage to their brains, lungs and digestive systems from lead poisoning because most vehicles use leaded fuels. Indonesia has the highest number of typhoid cases in Asia and has been plagued by recurrent epidemics of gastrointestinal infections, in the midst of high levels of drinking water pollution. Over 90 per cent of household and industrial wastes are discarded in largely uncontrolled dumps, with the toxic material seeping into groundwater. Rivers and canals are clogged with rubbish, polluting potable water. Fecal contamination is rampant as human waste is discharged directly into waterways.


The Philippines embarks on project for POP elimination

In the Philippines, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) is focusing on non-combustion methods to eradicate persistent organic pollutants (POPs). In May this year, the Global Environmental Facility had approved a multimillion dollar proposal to develop and test POPs destruction facilities utilizing non-combustion technologies in four countries. It even approved development of the first such facility in the Republic of Slovakia. The second destruction facility is earmarked for the Philippines. In many countries, POPs and other hazardous wastes are burnt in incinerators. But doubts regarding the efficacy of this process have led to more interest on the use of alternative non-combustion procedures. The Philippine Clean Air Act of 1999 and its Implementing Rules and Regulations banned the use of incinerators to burn wastes, with effect from 17 July 2003


Medical waste project in Bangladesh

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has launched a new scheme in Dhaka, Bangladesh, to thwart hospital wastes from being dumped on the streets. Most of the waste discarded food, needles, syringes, saline drips, gauze and vials is gathered by women and children who resell it regardless of the deadly health risks. Dhakas 600 plus clinics and hospitals produce an estimated 200 t/d of waste. Only a few have the necessary disposal facilities. Under the latest agenda, financed by the UNDP and its local partners, hospital wastes would be gathered in specially designed rickshaws and transported to a recycling plant where workers with protective clothing break it down. Material reclaimed at this facility is not used to manufacture medical products.


Indonesia: no waste tax without treatment

In Indonesia, the government has directed provincial administrations to drop their plans to impose taxes on industrial waste, unless they are serious about building waste treatment facilities. Notices to this effect have been sent to the following local governments: West Nusa Tenggara, Riau, East Kalimantan and North Sulawesi, where large mining firms are sited. This directive is the result of claims by the central government that corruption at the provincial level and increased bureaucracy are preventing foreign direct investment.

In an unrelated development, local governments have been asked by the World Bank to set up databases on hazardous waste in their cities; to provide information and monitor the different types of toxic wastes, locations and quantities. It is conservatively estimated that Indonesia produced more than a million tonnes of hazardous waste in 2000 though the only facility in the nation capable of processing such wastes treated only 30,000 tonnes in 2001.


Indias medical waste disposal business

In India, new directives issued by the Supreme Court along with a notification on biomedical waste management promulgated by the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) has led to the establishment of 35-40 facilities for converting wastes generated by clinics, nursing homes and hospitals. Set up by nearly two dozen companies, each facility requires a capital investment of around US$300,000. The Hyderabad-based Medicare Incin Pvt. Ltd., part of the Ramky Engineers Group, has set up a network of eight medical waste treatment and disposal units across the country. The company has five such units operating in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ludhiana, Mumbai and Ahmedabad. Three more are coming up in Chennai, Delhi and Kolkata.

The company provides two colour-coded bags to healthcare centres. About 30 trained staff travel a total distance of 700 km daily to collect the wastes filled in these bags. It is then brought to the plant for treatment. The residual waste is finally buried in a landfill, created by Ramky Enviro on the outskirts of the city. While steam is used in autoclaves to disinfect wastes at 120C for up to 90 minutes, in the incinerators, medical wastes, especially infectious and pathological varieties, are transformed into harmless mineral residues and gases, again at high temperature and combustion.


Controlling water pollution in China

The State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA) in China has reported that 1,590 schemes aimed at curbing water pollution have been listed for construction, at a cost of around US$14.87 billion, during the five-year plan period for 2001-2005. Detailed plans have been chalked out by SEPA, the State Development and Reform Commission, as well as concerned provinces, and approved by the State Council, the countrys highest governing body. The plans include construction of sewage treatment works in cities, proposals for comprehensive river valley harnessing and water diversion projects.

Funds for these schemes would be raised by the relevant local governments, with appropriate assistance from the state. Planners hope that by 2005 notable improvements will be achieved in the quality of water in Huaihe, Haihe and Liaohe rivers and three reservoirs. Water for the eastern route of the south-to-north water diversion project, designed to bring water from the Yangtze river to arid north China, will also comply with quality standards. SEPA has prompted the concerned provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities to alter their industrial structure, promote eco-friendly production and impose restrictions on the amount of pollutants discharged into rivers or lakes. They have even been advised to establish a system for charging fees for sewage and trash disposal, and raise investments in projects related to water pollution prevention.


Pyrolysis technology gets the green signal in the Philippines

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in the Philippines has stated that pyrolysis in not a form of incineration and it satisfies conditions stipulated in the Clean Air Act for non-burn methods. This decision overrules claims made by the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternative that a pyrolysis facility built by Integrated Waste Management Inc. is based on an incineration process. DENR has also identified other non-burn processes like the autoclave and microwave, to dispose medical wastes. Under the Clean Air Act, effective from 18 July 2003, incinerators will not be employed for disposing hospital wastes.


Chinese efforts to handle solid waste disposal concerns

Increasing solid wastes in China is posing serious problems in spite of additional investments in environmental protection. Statistics show that solid waste from the nations industrial sector reached 888 million tonnes during 2001 from 659 million tonnes in 1996, with a 7 per cent average increase annually. Waste residues from mines across China occupy 900 km2 of land, two-thirds of which are arable land. Domestic waste generation increased by an average of 4 per cent a year, from 108 million tonnes in 1996 to 135 million tonnes in 2001. Toxic wastes from hospitals, discarded electronic gadgets and domestic animal excretion in rural areas also contribute to the pollution load.


Indian court direction on toxic waste imports

In India, the nations premier judicial authority has directed the Central Environment Ministry to immediately circulate a notification listing the 29 hazardous chemicals banned from entering the country. The Supreme Court has further stipulated that the notification be sent to the Ministry of Commerce for amending the Exim Policy 2002-07. Though the previous Exim Policy had listed these toxic wastes, their names were excluded from the present policy.


Costs of ratification vex Thai industry

In Thailand, the industrial sector is concerned about the cost of ratifying a global treaty aimed at protecting human health and the environment from persistent organic pollutants (POPs). The Stockholm Convention, signed by the government last year and scheduled to be ratified within two years, makes it compulsory for members to decrease carcinogenic substances known as dioxins.
Among the twelve POPs, nine are pesticide compounds and the other three dioxins, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) and furan come from industrial activities. Nine POPs have already been restricted in Thailand, leaving only dioxins, furan and PCB. Dioxins and furan are by-products of burning chlorine-based substances like paper and plastic bleached with chlorine. Another source of dioxins and furan is municipal and hospital waste incinerators. Since PCB, a highly toxic and carcinogenic substance, cannot be treated in Thailand, spent PCB is sent to France by the state electricity agency for treatment. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment is looking at the impacts of ratifying the convention.


Revised law includes environmental risk assessment

In the Republic of Korea, the Toxic Chemicals Control Act is slated for revision to incorporate an official risk assessment programme with other measures aimed at keeping better track of chemicals affecting human health and the environment. The new initiative is meant to boost efforts aimed at improving the management of hazardous chemicals. The draft legislation published by the Ministry of Environment on 12 June 2003 vide Notice No. 2003-83 calls for realignment of the nations industrial and agricultural chemicals management policy with international standards for restricting the use, production, release or emission of hazardous chemicals. The amendment will be submitted to Parliament as early as July after a public review. If approved, the revised law will be implemented on 1 January 2004.


Electronic waste disposal in Thailand

In Thailand, senior representatives of the Pollution Control Department (PCD) are expressing their concerns regarding the paucity of control over electronic wastes imported into the country. Exports from Japan and the United States, have been identified as the major gateway for electronic wastes entering developing nations. Efforts by PCD, under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, for drafting a national waste management plan have culminated in a series of recommendations that the department anticipates to be adopted and transformed into policy by the government within next year. Even though the plan is yet to be finalized, it is expected to emphasize waste separation at the household and business levels and recycling of electronic products.


China to resolve dangerous waste disposal issue

China plans to invest US$2.4 billion to fundamentally resolve the problem of dangerous waste disposal before 2005. SEPA has reported that while the annual production of dangerous waste is around nine million tons, a mere two-thirds of this quantity is disposed properly. Large volumes of hazardous wastes are in temporary storage owing to the poor treatment and disposal capability.


The Philippines to impose users fee for proper waste disposal

In the Philippines, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has formulated guidelines to implement the Environmental Users Fee - 2002, a market-based strategy that charges companies with fees for using the environments land and water resources to dispose wastes. The new rules and regulations also encourage companies to pursue the least-cost means of pollution and internalize the philosophy of self-regulation. Under the Department Administrative Order No. 39 series of 2003, permits for wastewater discharge will be issued with corresponding fees and upon submission of requirements. This fee includes fixed and load-based fees, wherein the fixed fee is based on average flow of wastewater discharges, in cubic metres per day, as well as the presence of heavy metals. It will also cover administrative cost of processing, filling, monitoring and inspection.

In line with efforts by DENR to improve service to its clientele, Section 8 of the Order states that in case an application was denied, the firm may reapply within 15 working days from the date of receipt of the written disapproval. Likewise, DENRs regional offices must act on the request within 30 working days upon receiving the firms request. Companies with denied or revoked applications are not allowed to discharge their wastes into the environment.


Medical waste treatment in China

The Chinese government intends to construct medical waste treatment plants for centralized disposal within three years. The Minister of State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA) has stated that the government has devoted a number of special funds to improve medical waste transit and incinerators after the SARS plague. Five notices were successively issued by SEPA for publicizing the relevant technological standard and processes of dealing with emergencies, and directs local environmental protection authorities to reinforce medical waste treatment monitoring. The State Council and SEPA have drawn up plans to handle problems pertaining to centralized waste disposal, aiming at medical waste and lag wastewater treatment facilities.



Waterproof glue from waste foam

Xinhua Rubber and Plastic facility, China, has used waste polystyrene foam to produce waterproof glue for use in civil structures. The new high-quality product is obtained at a low cost through the use of processes such as solution\filtration\cleaning and character-changing. The glue has been proved to be capable of preventing surface as well as indoor seepage. It is especially useful in keeping wooden floor/wall/door and window from mildewing because of dampness. Another feature is the glues non-inflammability.


Study reiterates use of plastic wastes in road construction

A study undertaken in India by Kochi Refineries Ltd. (KRL) supports the use of plastic wastes for improving the performance of bitumen in road-laying. KRL conducted a detailed survey of available literature on the subject, collected data from others who had worked on this concept, inspected roads in two states where this technique was employed on an experimental basis and carried out its own tests on different types of blends. However, a major hindrance inhibiting widespread use of waste plastics in road-laying is that the process of blending waste plastic and bitumen is energy-intensive and time-consuming, because of the insolubility of swollen polymer in the bitumen matrix. Also, high viscosity of the bitumen-polymer composition poses difficulties while laying roads using traditional processes. Incompatibility of the modifying polymer with bitumen matrix leads to phase separation on storage. Furthermore, the KRL report makes the following observations:
  • A temperature of 180C is ideal for blending;
  • Blending becomes difficult when plastic waste exceeds 3 per cent of the bitumen content;
  • Waste plastic tends to separate from the blends when its concentration exceeds 3 per cent;
  • Homogeneity of the blends cannot be achieved beyond 3 per cent plastics concentration; and
  • Off-site mixing of waste plastic and bitumen is not advised.

Recycling fuel tanks made of polyethylene

A research team at the Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology (FICT), Germany, has devised an economical procedure for recycling plastic fuel tanks fabricated using polyethylene. About 15,000 t/y of such waste is collected from scrap yards and workshops throughout the country. In common with the 10,000 t of used oil tanks from domestic heating systems, by the end of their useful life they will have soaked up 3-5 per cent by weight of the fuel they once contained. This is a major impediment for recycling companies who have to separate the fuel from polyethylene. When this granulated plastic is melted down to form new products, some of the combustible hydrocarbon evaporates and poses safety risks. New components made from the recycled material will give off an unpleasant smell.

The FICT team uses an extraction method that is based on supercritical carbon dioxide (CO2) for separating the materials. Shredded fuel tanks are placed in pressurized vessels and diffused with CO2. At a specific pressure and temperature, CO2 acts as a highly efficient solvent, extracting fuel that has infiltrated the plastic. Next, the gas is pumped round a circuit and the pressure is reduced to release the dissolved fuel. One of the latest ideas in this ongoing project is to combine the extraction and extrusion processes. Instead of cleaning the granulate, this task is performed on the re-melted bulk plastic, shortly before it is shaped into a new item.

Contact: Mr. Birgit Bohlmann, Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology, Joseph-von-Fraunhofer-Strasse 7, 76327 Pfinztal/Berghausen, Germany. Tel: +49 (721) 4640 302; Fax: +49 (721) 4640 111.


Liquefaction process for waste plastics

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Ltd., Japan, has developed a thermal cracking liquefaction process that eliminates the need for an expensive preliminary separation system, an essential step before plastics can be recycled. Key features of the new process include:

  • The simple preliminary treatment equipment: uses sand as the heat source and fluid medium, making it possible to mix the plastic with metals, etc.;
  • Prevention of coking trouble in thermal cracking technique: Direct mixing method between the hot sand and plastic eliminates coking difficulties, caused by temperature exchange on the equipment surface for the conventional indirect heating;
  • Selective recovery of light oil by reflux tower: A reflux tower installed above the thermal cracking reactor facilitates selective recovery of light oil. Heavy oil fraction , a phase of vapour produced by thermal cracking, is condensed and returned to the thermal cracking reactor for re-cracking. This makes it easier to obtain recovered oil that does not include the wax fraction at a high yield.
Based on average yield under stable conditions (9.4 h), the percentage of recovered oil is 40 per cent by weight (0.471/kg waste). The highest percentage is 50 per cent by weight (0.581/kg waste), based on results for 12 h continuous operation. Oil thus obtained can fuel boilers. As the flashpoint of the oil is about 21C, it includes some components of petrol. Fractional distillation can be used to separate the petroleum contents. Wastes that can be recycled by this method include polyethylene, PVC, polypropylene, PET, thermosetting plastics, paper, garbage, metal, etc.

Contact: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd., 2-5-1, Marunouchi Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100 8315, Japan. Tel: +81 (3) 3212 3111; Fax: +81 (3) 3212 9800; Website:

Source Website:

Plastic recycling

Environmental Engineering Co. Ltd., based in the Republic of Korea, has developed a range of waste treatment devices such as waste plastic oil recycling machine (WAPORM) and waste styrofoam volume reduction machine (WASREM). A unit for crushing waste tyres has also been developed. The WAPORM is easy to operate and handle, and is more effective than conventional counterparts in recovering oil resources. It can effectively treat all types and sizes of waste plastics. The compact system decomposes and reutilizes waste polymeric materials, such as plastics and styrofoam, using back-thermal-gradient heating process. It incorporates a melting bath, in which waste polymeric material is melted. The molten plastics are then sent to a thermal cracking tower.

WASREM facilitates reuse of waste styrofoam by completely separating foreign materials while maintaining the styrofoams original properties. Non-inflammable Ice Solve is very effective for separating shells, salty foreign materials, etc. from the styro-foam. Ice Solve can be reused and the simple WASREM unit makes it possible to retrieve the original cost within a short period. The quality of recycled styrofoam by conventional heating methods is inferior to that yielded by WASREM since foreign materials are not properly separated from styrofoam in the former method. Moreover, as heating temperature depends on the type of waste styrofoam, transfer efficiency and carburization are significantly decreased.

Contact: Mr. Billy S. Kim, Korea Oil Environmental Technology Co. Ltd., 22-7, Palyong-Dong, Changwon-Si, Kyonggi-do 641 847, the Republic of Korea. Tel: +82 (31) 7791 585; Fax: +82 (31) 7551 756; Website:

Source Website:

Recovery of PVC from cable wastes

A European consortium has come up with a process to separate PVC, rubber and PE from cable scrap, by employing tribo-electric charging. The Tribo-electric cable plastics recycling (Tricare) project, supported by the European Union, has resulted in substantial waste reduction. The cables incorporate materials such as polyethylene, PVC, metals and rubber. Present recycling methods focus on metals, despite plastics accounting for 45 per cent of cable weight, PVC being a large proportion of this. An estimated 400,000 t of plastics from cable recovery are sent to landfills across Europe every year as present recovery methods cannot separate PVC and rubber in large quantities.

Materials get a positive or negative charge when in contact with other substances. An electrostatic field separates the charged particles. By increasing this electrical charge gap between PVC and rubber particles, the Tricare technology enables recycling of this hitherto unrecyclable waste. Moreover, the additive-free Tricare process needs low energy and less labour than conventional techniques, and no by-products are produced. This process allows the recovery of 90 per cent PVC, with an 85-89 per cent PVC grade. The recovered material can be utilized to make new cables or even other products. A different project consortium is set to extend this technique to recover rubber.


New process yields fuel from plastics

Tokuyama Corporation, Japan, has developed technology for converting waste plastic into raw material or fuel. Designed for use with plastic sheeting, film and similar forms of waste, the new technology involves shredding of unwanted plastic and then using it to fuel a cement kiln. This process can be used to provide 20-30 per cent of the fuel needed for manufacturing cement. Prior to incineration, hard wastes must be shredded, while thin forms of plastic are granulated. Once reduced to 25 mm in diameter, the waste can be used as fuel. Key features of the new technology are: high-volume conversion of waste plastic into fuel/raw material; no harmful emissions; high recycling ratio; and sound economic viability.



Incineration system for infectious wastes

In Japan, Matsushita Environment Air-conditioning Eng. Co. Limited is offering incineration equipment for disposing medical wastes, including infectious wastes. This system can incinerate 2,500 kg/d of combustible medical wastes, general wastes and garbage. Key features include:
  • Smoke-free and odour-free: The emission of clean exhaust gas is due to high-temperature, complete secondary combustion of unburned gases and a dust collector;
  • Fully automatic operation: All processes, from incineration to furnace cooling, operate automatically;
  • Automatic air control: Combustion programmes that suit the traits of the refuse are provided by automatic control of combustion air;
  • High durability: Adoption of high-quality castables in the furnace as well as simple and rigid construction ensure durability;
  • Fire grate-free construction: The waste is incinerated completely by direct combustion on the furnace bed without using a grate; and
  • Advanced treatment for exhaust gas: The secondary incineration unit decomposes dioxins. Any remaining dioxins/acid gases are absorbed by activated carbon and slaked lime.
Contact: Matsushita Environment Air-conditioning Eng. Co. Limited, 3-28-33, Tarumi-cho, Suita, Osaka 564 0062, Japan. Tel: +81 (6) 6338 1831; Fax: +81 (6) 6338 1491;


Source Website:

On-site disposal of biohazardous wastes

The United States-based Waste Reduction by Waste Reduction Inc. (WR2) offers an on-site process to dispose hospital pathological waste and related biohazardous materials. The new method employs alkaline hydrolysis at elevated temperatures to convert the proteins, nucleic acids and lipids of all cells and tissues, as well as infectious micro-organisms, into a sterile aqueous blend of small peptides, amino acids, sugars, etc. The alkali itself is consumed in the process by generating the salts of hydrolysis. The only solid by-product is the mineral constituents (ash) of the bones and teeth of vertebrates. The WR2 process solubilizes and digests embalmed or fixed tissues as well as fresh and frozen tissues, and destroys the fixatives. None of the potentially hazardous chemicals used in the fixation process can be detected after alkaline hydrolysis.

The WR2 process is carried out by a tissue digester consisting of an insulated, steam-jacketed, stainless steel pressure vessel with a lid that is manually or automatically sealed. The vessel incorporates a retainer basket for the bone remnants and refractive substances (indigestible components such as paper, latex, sharps, etc.). The vessel is A.S.M.E. pressure rated for operation at 100 psig, but is operated routinely at less than 70 psig to achieve a processing temperature of 150C. After loading, the entire process is automated to allow unattended operation during the processing cycle.

A cycle includes weighing the load, adding hydroxide and water, heating up to processing temperature and pressure, soaking (while agitated) for nearly 3 h, cooling, emptying the liquid, rinsing and shutting down. The whole process takes about 4-5 h (depending on steam supply). The process accepts materials at any temperature even frozen tissues.

Contact: WR2 Incorporated, 5711, West Minnesota St., Indianapolis, Indiana 46241, the United States. Tel: +1 (317) 4844 200; Fax: +1 (317) 4844 201;



New system

Mark-Costello Co., Australia, offers an extremely flexible unit to collect, sterilize, dispose and also monitor biomedical wastes. Specially designed mobile garbage bins, each with a unique identification, is used to collect wastes. A scanner logs the time, date and bin ID as and when they are collected. Tracking as well as management is continuous, since filled bins are taken to the waste treatment facility from the collection points. At the treatment plant, each bin is scanned and weighed before they are emptied into the sterilizer. Waste material is sterilized using saturated steam under pressure at temperatures up to 140C for about 40 minutes. Treated waste is automatically removed and, in the case of clinical waste, loaded automatically into the grinder. Reduced volume of the treated and ground waste is then further reduced by compaction in the disposal container. Quarantine waste, following sterilization, is automatically loaded directly into the
disposal container and compacted.

Remote monitoring is feasible using a LAN or modem, through a secured entry procedure.

Contact: The Mark-Costello Co. Australia Pty. Limited, Suite 27, Cleveland House, # 120, Bloomfield Street, Cleveland QLD 4163, Australia. Tel: +61 (7) 3821 1500; Fax: +61 (7) 3821 1525;



Disinfection system

CMB Maschinenbau und Handels GmbH, Austria, offers a patented solution to ensure maximum safety for all areas of application. SINTION combines microwave and saturated steam to disinfect medical wastes. Waste is thrown into the disposal sack as part of hospital routines and remains uncompressed, facilitating steam to enter from all sides during the disinfection process. Evacuation phases guarantee that the waste is dampened evenly in the disinfection chamber. Steam heats the surface of the waste material while microwave heats waste from the inside and also eliminates micro-organisms in long, narrow hoses. This mixture of saturated steam and microwave allows for the rapid disinfection and sterilization of non-specific wastes. The final evacuation phase cools the waste and suppresses unpleasant odours. Some benefits offered by the SINTION system include:
  • Treats all infectious wastes;
  • Simple operation, servicing and maintenance;
  • Complete operating safety; and
  • Eco-friendly.
Contact: CMB Maschinenbau und Handels GmbH, Plabutscherstr. 115, 8051 Graz, Austria. Tel: +43 (0316) 685515-0; Fax: +43 (0316) 685515-210;



Medical waste incinerator

In the United Kingdom, a medical waste incinerator has been devised by Technology Group at De Montfort University, under a project of the Applied Sciences Faculty. Designed as a relatively cheap incinerator for disposing hospital wastes, this unit reduces waste into ash by exposing it to temperatures exceeding 800C. Available in two basic designs, the Mark 1 burns about 12 kg/h of waste and the Mark 3 combusts nearly four times this amount.

Waste is fed through a loading door at the top of the primary combustion chamber, which is then closed on an airtight sand seal. Waste is heated by radiation from the hot firebricks in the absence of air. As the previous load or fuel is burned away, it falls down the chamber, owing to gravity. As it comes near the combustion zone (where the air holes enter the chamber), it is dried, pyrolysed and burned. Any vapours given off during the drying procedure have to pass by way of the primary combustion zone and then the secondary combustion chamber before entering the chimney stack.

Contact: Prof. D.J. Picken, De Montfort University, the United Kingdom.



New system to treat medical wastes

Positive Impact Waste Solutions Inc. (PIWS), the United States, offers a cost-effective alternative for treating regulated medical waste (RMW) produced by hospitals and other such facilities. The patented MMT 3000, a mobile medical waste processor, and its proprietary sterilant (called Cold-Ster) provides RMW industry with an on-site and environmentally friendly approach to manage waste.

Utilizing a computer interface, the MMT 3000 operator loads vital data, like net weight of the waste, and processing date and time. The proper amount of Cold-Ster and water mist needed to treat the volume of waste to be processed is then added. An automated Cart Lift device transfers waste into the twin treatment compartments, where Cold-Ster chemically binds to the waste, balancing the pH level and rendering the organic material and micro-organisms non-infectious. Additionally, processing blades of the MMT 3000 reduce the waste to around 30 per cent of its original volume. The treated material is then unloaded into the medical facilitys general waste stream and can be emptied into any public waste landfill. All aspects of the process are recorded by the MMT 3000s on-board computer for permanent and regulatory documentation.

Contact: Positive Impact Waste Solutions Inc., P.O. Box 14692, Odessa, TX 79768; United States of America.





In the United States, the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) has developed a process for recycling cathode ray tubes (CRTs) found in televisions and computer monitors. CRTs contain an average of 2.25-3.6 kg of lead, a substance that is extremely difficult to dispose. The innovative technique for dismantling CRTs, by employing high-powered water jets, facilitates quick and easy recycling without additional pollution.

Operating like soft saws, the water jets cut CRTs cleanly, separating the faceplates from the funnels using two dual-nozzle water jets. While one nozzle is fixed to the side of a conveyor belt, the other is attached to a pivoting mechanical arm, which maintains alignment of the CRTs. As the CRTs move, opposing water jets cut through the faceplates. The monitors then move to the second cutting station where the remaining two sides are spliced. Apart from making the process easier, NJITs method enables automation. Instead of manually feeding the parts into a machine, a conveyor belt is used, making the procedure more suitable for large-scale recycling. CRTs begin on the belt as assembled units and emerge completely separated.


Automated CRT and electronics recycling

Proventia Automation Oy, Finland, is offering electronics recycling automation lines and cathode ray tube (CRT) recycling automation. A third patented product being developed, mobile phone recycling system, is expected to be available in the near future. All of these solutions are 5-10 times faster than those presently available, thereby raising recycling capability. The electronics recycling automation systems are based on mining crushing method and electromagnetic separation technologies. Different electronic wastes fed into the line are processed into metal, glass, plastics, etc. and supplied to markets for reuse or landfills.

CRTs are recycled by an automatic laser separation process to ensure increased processing speed, higher degree of recyclability and improved collection of poisonous materials.

Contact: Proventia Automation Oy, Temmeksentie 3, PL 208, Oulu 90401, Finland. Tel: +358 (8) 375 800; Fax: +358 (8) 379 170.


Segregating scrap electronics

In Germany, Steinert Elektromagnete Bau GmbH has developed a process that removes all the harmful materials found in electronic wastes. During the same procedure, circuit boards, cables, plastic casings and picture tubes are sorted into individual piles. Each of these heaps are then crushed mechanically. Next, ferrous and non-ferrous metals are separated using Steinert separators. Based on the design of the installation, effective metal separation can be conducted at every stage in the crushing operation.

Contact: Steinert Elektromagnete Bau GmbH, Widdersdorfer Str. 329-331, Koln D 50933, Germany. Tel: +49 (221) 4984-0; Fax: +49 (221) 4984 102;



Recycling CRTs

NuLife Glass, the United Kingdom, has developed a method to recycle cathode ray tubes (CRTs). The new process applies specific heat conditions, chemical additives and unique handling designs to separate harmful elements of the CRT to yield a range of products, which are either prime feedstocks or even new products. In essence, the NuLife method is the reverse of glass-making process. To de-manufacture glass back into its constituent elements, isolate them and remanufacture useful products initially started out as a very expensive process. However, costs have now been reduced to a level where it delivers an economical and eco-friendly solution.

Contact: NuLife Glass, 5, Castle Park, Flint, Flintshire CH6 5XA, United Kingdom. Tel: +44 (01663) 749 778.


Recycling electric and electronic waste

Eco Electronics Oy, Finland, has designed an electronic recycling process (ERP) line to recycle all sorts of pre-processed electric as well as electronic wastes. In the handling stage, waste is first reduced into an optimal granular size. Next, a sorting process segregates metals from the plastic and ceramic constituents. Since the raw material thus obtained is extremely pure, it is suitable for further processing. Magnetic metals are returned to the steel industry, aluminium and copper to smelting plants, and plastics and ceramics to the processing industries and as energy supply.
The cathode ray tube (CRT) process is based on laser cutting technology, which enables separation of panel glass from funnel glass, which contains lead. Extremely pure and clean glass material is obtained for reuse. The laser cutting method also enables multiple production capacity compared with traditional separation methods used in most processing plants around the globe.

Contact: Eco Electronics Oy, Temmeksentie 3, Oulu 90400, Finland. Tel: +358 (8) 375 800;
Fax: +358 (8) 379 170;




Solvent recovery unit for stripper

Kimura Chemical Plants Co. Ltd., Japan, is offering a solvent recovery system for stripper that regenerates the solvent after removing and dissolving photo-resist for reuse as the stripper. This system comprises a distillation unit and accessory units like utility supply systems. First, the charged waste stripper is indirectly heated using steam under vacuum boiling, vapourizing the solvent for recovery of target components together with low boiling point contaminants. The photo-resist does not vapourize; it stays in the liquid phase with other non-volatile compounds. Next, the continuous distillation unit separates low boiling point impurities consisting of water. The mixed vapour of water and stripper solvent is charged from the separator into the distillation unit. Low boiling point waste liquid consisting of water is distilled from the top of the tower and recycled stripper free of contaminants is recovered at the bottom.

The distillation tower separates each constituent with differences in vapour pressure.

Contact: Kimura Chemical Plants Co. Limited, 1-2, Kuise-Terajima 2-chome, Amagasaki, Hyogo 660 8567, Japan. Tel: +81 (6) 6488 2552; Fax: +81 (6) 6488 5023.


New solvent recovery system

The United States-based Pneumatic Products is offering completely self-contained Siva S-series of solvent recovery units S-10(V), S-15(V), S-20(V) and S-30(V). Available in both vacuum and non-vacuum models, the systems are heated by electric heaters dipped in thermal oil within the outer jacket of a stainless steel solvent chamber. Except for the S-10(V) model, the other systems can be operated in batch or continuous mode. Continuous operation uses a level-controlled automatic fill system with an air-operated ball valve and fail-safe microprocessor. The solvent chamber is designed to accommodate patented flexible Teflon or a nylon liner for easy removal of solid residue. Solvent chamber and lid are sealed with a Teflon encapsulated O-ring gasket.

Contact: Pneumatic Products, 4647, S.W. 40th Avenue, Ocala, FL 34474, United States of America. Tel: +1 (352) 2375 500; Fax: +1 (352) 8735 187.


Lab-scale high pressure reactor

Researchers at Imperial College, the United Kingdom, have developed a stainless steel, high-pressure stirred cell suitable for nanofiltration separations and reverse osmosis using aqueous and non-aqueous solvents. The METcell can also be used for catalysis, hydrogenation and bioreactions, or operated as a continuous filtration system. It offers a fast and economical alternative to distillation and chromatography. Key features include:
  • Dedicated, pre-assembled MET gas unit includes an isolation valve, vent valve, and pressure regulator, relief valve and gauges to allow for safe and simple operation of a high-pressure system through connection to a gas cylinder;
  • Connection port for HPLC pump allows charging of solutions into the MET cell without opening the cell; particularly useful when solutes are oxygen/moisture sensitive or when continuous operation is required;
  • A 35 mm wide removable PTFE coated stirrer bar is used to promote excellent mixing down to low liquid volume hold-ups; and
  • Easy cleaning and sterilizing, enables it to be utilized for different experiments in quick succession.
Contact: Membrane Extraction Technology, Dept. of Chemical Engineering, Imperial College, London SW7 2BY, United Kingdom. Tel: +44 (207) 5949 602; Fax: +44 (207) 5949 603.


Solvent recovery, distillation and VOC abatement

Vara technology developed in the United States, by Calgon Carbon Corp., provides the most complete, reliable and cost-effective adsorption systems to recycle and reuse more than 99 per cent of solvents while exceeding regulatory limits for VOC removal from industrial emissions. Adsorption is the ideal VOC control solution for manufacturing methods that generate a solvent laden gas stream. This applies to a wide variety of industries, such as pharmaceutical and chemical plants that use solvents in drying, coating, curing and cleaning operations. Advanced distillation systems are also available for separating and recovering high-purity solvents suitable for reuse. The range of distillation capabilities provided include extraction columns, solvent/solvent separation, steam stripping columns, solvent/water separation, stripping/rectification columns, vacuum columns and wastewater treatment.

VOC abatement systems treat air or gas containing VOCs. Vara Technologies offers the following units:
  • Regenerable Carbon Adsorption system is suitable for applications that use chlorinated solvents.
  • CADRE treats large volume gas streams containing low concentrations of VOCs. It combines fixed-bed regenerable adsorption and thermal oxidation technology into a single system to provide an efficient VOC abatement alternative for high flow applications.
  • Revolver Z is built around a zeolite rotor technology and is coupled with a thermal oxidizer to provide a low-cost yet highly efficient VOC control unit. This unit continuously absorbs/removes VOCs from large air streams. While the zeolite wheel rotates, VOCs are removed with hot air. The resulting desorbed organic compounds are then oxidized to CO2 and H2O in a thermal oxidizer.
A complete range of thermal oxidation systems for VOC destruction are also available. These systems include thermal oxidizers, recuperative thermal oxidizers, regenerative thermal oxidizers, etc.

Contact: Calgon Carbon Corporation, 400, Calgon Carbon Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15205, United States of America. Tel: +1 (412) 7876 700.


Activated carbon-based recovery unit

AMCEC Inc. of the United States is exploiting the adsorption power of activated carbon to recover organic solvents. Recovery efficiencies over 99 per cent enables the system to offer substantial economic benefits. Recovery begins when solvent laden air (SLA) passes through deep static beds of activated carbon. Solvents are retained in the activated carbon pores while cleansed air is sent out. Through staggered adsorption and desorption cycles monitored using analysers and computer, each bed is periodically regenerated by the counter flow of steam or inert gas that heats the carbon.

During the regeneration step, solvent vapours released from the carbon are carried by steam or inert gas to condensation, decanting and solvent treatment units.

Contact: AMCEC Inc., 2525, Cabot Drive, Suite 205, LISLE, Illinois 60532, United States of America. Tel: +1 (630) 5770 400; Fax: +1 (630) 5770 401;



New technology for air quality control

The University of Illinois in the United States is offering a patented vapour phase removal and recovery system (VaPRRS) to effectively separate dilute volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) from gaseous streams and recover them as pure liquids. The long-lasting filter can be integrated into various manufacturing facilities and air pollution control systems, including painting and surface coating, printing, dry cleaning, chemical processing, etc.

VaPRRS uses an activated carbon fibre cloth (ACFC) as an alternative adsorbent to conventional granular activated carbon (GAC) for removing and recovering organic vapours from gas streams. The new microporous ACFC exhibits up to 250 per cent the adsorption capacity of GAC, faster mass and heat transfer properties, and is ash-free to inhibit chemical reactions between the ACFC and adsorbed vapours. Electrothermal desorption (ED) is used to rapidly regenerate the ACFC with much lower energy requirements than steam- or heated nitrogen-based regeneration. ED also eliminates the need for an adsorbent drying phase and the recovered solvent/water separation processes usually required with conventional steam regeneration.

Continuous VOC/HAP capture and recovery tests were performed with the bench-scale unit.

Contact: Ms. Lesley Millar, Office of Technology Management, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 319, Ceramics Building, 105, South Goodwin Ave., Urbana, IL 61801, United States of America. Tel: +1 (217) 2656 216/3337 862; Fax: +1 (217) 2655 530;



Solvent recovery and steam regeneration

DEC Impianti Group of Italy offers various processes to treat gaseous emissions that contain recoverable solvents. Adsorption using activated carbon and successive regeneration of carbon to recover the adsorbed solvent includes the RSV (steam regeneration) and RSG (inert gas regeneration) processes. In the RSV unit, treated solvent laden air (SLA) passes through the activated carbon bed of the adsorber, which is in the adsorption phase. Carbon adsorbs the solvent while cleansed air exits. In the next phase, a low-pressure steam flow, transferring heat to the activated carbon bed, desorbs the solvent. Following condensation, the solvent is sent to a static separator to divide the water phase from the organic one.

Based on the RSV plant, the RSG unit consists of two or more active carbon adsorbers that alternate the absorption and regeneration phase. Once treated, the SLA (filtered and conditioned), is passed through the active carbon bed of the adsorber, which is in the adsorption phase. Carbon adsorbs the solvent while cleansed air comes out. In the next phase, a hot inert gas provides heat to the active carbon bed, desorbing the solvent. Some notable benefits of RSG include:
  • Direct recovery of the solvent or anhydrous mixtures (water < 7 per cent; if the plant is equipped with MSU, the quantity of water < 0.1 per cent) without the need for complex distillation unit;
  • Total absence of contaminated process water discharge;
  • Low energy consumption;
  • Reduced activated carbon activity loss;
  • Hydrolysys reactions of solvents are nearly absent;
  • Solvent oxidation reactions are virtually eliminated because of the inert atmosphere, even during the cooling phase of the regeneration bed; and
  • Extreme high level of protection from the risk of ignition even with high concentrations of ketones.
Other technologies offered by DEC include absorption (scrubbing), condensation through specific cooling of the gaseous stream and, finally, CRYoCON or cryocondensation of solvent stream through nitrogen condenser. Main application areas of the DEC processes are adhesive tapes industries, flexible packaging industries, rotogravure industries, etc.

Contact: DEC Impianti Group, Via Trento, 33 RHO 20017, Italy.



Vacuum/non-vacuum recovery systems

Advanced Environmental Solutions Inc., based in the United States, has introduced R-series on-site solvent recovery systems. The R-2A non-vacuum solvent recovery unit distils waste solvents with normal boiling points between 35C and 190C. A 1,100 W cast-in aluminium heater provides sufficient heat to distil an 18 litre solvent batch in about 8 h, depending on the quantity of contamination. Solvent is brought to its boiling point, and the vapours condense on a water-cooled dome inside the lid. Recovered solvent flows from the machine, forming a gasket-free vapour seal. A patented disposable liner (of nylon or Teflon) contains waste residue for disposal.

The R-2V vacuum solvent recovery unit can distil waste solvents with normal boiling points between 35-246C. A 1,100 W cast-in aluminium heater provides sufficient heat for distilling a 23 litre solvent batch in about 8 h, depending on the quantity of contaminate. Key features of both units include:
  • Fully insulated;
  • Conforms to National Fire Protection Association codes for Class 1, Division 1, Group D hazardous sites;
  • Fulfils air emission standards;
  • All wetted parts are manufactured from stainless steel; and
  • Exempt from federal hazardous waste treatment permits.
Contact: Advanced Environmental Solutions Inc., 8643 South, 212th St., Kent, WA 98031, United States of America. Tel: +1 (800) 2753 549; Fax: +1 (253) 8720 260;



Fluidized-bed solvent recovery system

In Japan, Daikin Industries Ltd. is offering a fluidized-bed solvent recovery system to effectively reclaim organic solvents especially chlorinated and water-soluble solvents, and CFCs in high purity. This unit operates continuously and incorporates highly efficient multi-stage adsorption and desorption towers. An epoch-making non-stop circulation type solvent recovery unit circulates specifically produced beaded activated carbon. When compared with conventional fixed-bed type system, this unit ensures safe operation and continuous solvent recovery.

Contact: Daikin Industries Ltd., Equipment and System Dept., Yodogawa Plant, 1-1, Nishi Hitotsuya Settu-shi, Osaka 566, Japan. Tel: +81 (6) 3497 872; Fax: +81 (6) 3496 785.



Recycling batteries

Tecnica Reunidas S.A., Spain, has developed a hydrometallurgical process to obtain pure lead from lead oxide secondary materials battery pastes, lead fumes, slags, etc. At the core of the PLACID process is its original electrowinning cell, which produces pure electrolytic lead on the cathode and regenerates hydrochloric acid at anode. Regenerated acid is used as the leaching reagent in the process, hence net reagent consumption is minimum. Benefits of this process include: formation of gases is eliminated; less amount of solid residue of non-hazardous characteristics; higher lead recovery; lower operating costs; and a more cleaner and safer working ambient.

Contact: Tecnica Reunidas, S.A., Sierra Nevada 16 S. Fernando de Henares, Madrid 28830, Spain. Tel: +34 (91) 6757 700; Fax: +34 (91) 6757 821.


Soda-free electric smelting process for secondary lead

The State Research Institute of Non-ferrous Metals, Russia, has devised a method that does not use soda as the fluxing agent while recycling battery scrap and other varieties of secondary lead raw materials. Soda-free electric smelting is conducted without matte formation and the slag amount is kept at a minimum since its formation depends on the coke ash content and the scrap graded quality. Notable benefits of this process over blast smelting and smelting in short-drum furnaces are:
  • Less off-gases being formed, ensures, at the equivalent gas cleaning over five-fold decrease of emission into the atmosphere of lead-containing dust and sulphurous anhydride per unit of lead even in case enrichment of blast with blast furnaces oxygen; and
  • Reduced flue dust and slag yield from 20-25 to 3-5 per cent, in coke consumption from 10-12 to 3-4 per cent and fewer recycles.
Contact: State Research Institute of Non-ferrous Metals, 13, Acad. Korolyova str., Moscow 129519, Russia. Tel: +7 (095) 2156 173/2153 458.


New technology for recycling spent batteries

National Metallurgical Laboratory, India, has developed technology for recycling spent batteries. In the new process, battery scrap is mixed with reduction and fluxes. The mixture is compacted to obtain briquettes, followed by smelting for reclaiming lead. This process recovers over 90 per cent of lead with a purity level of about 98 per cent. The sulphur part is converted to sulphide and can be used to produce hydrogen sulphide. Plant and machinery required to process 3 t/d of battery scrap could be procured for approx. US$650,000. Contact: Director, National Metallurgical Laboratory, Jamshedpur 831 007, India. Tel: +91 (0657) 271 715/251; Fax: +91 (0657) 270 527.



Recovering lead from waste batteries

In the United States, Exide Technologies presently recycles about 50 million batteries per year, making it one of the largest secondary lead smelters. In the recycling process, spent or dead batteries are broken apart to facilitate separation of lead, plastics and acid. Lead is melted, poured into ingots and delivered for use in new batteries. The plastic is chipped, washed and conveyed to a plastics facility, where it is melted and made into new battery cases and other parts. The sulphuric acid is reused on a limited basis or, alternatively, neutralized and discharged.

Contact: Exide Technologies World Headquarters, 210, Carnegie Centre, Suite 500, Princeton, New Jersey 08540, United States of America. Tel: +1 (609) 6277 200.


Recycling lithium batteries

Toxco Inc., the United States, has established a new lithium recycling plant wherein most operations are performed by remote control. The facility inventories incoming lithium battery waste, which is then stored in earth covered concrete storage bunkers. Residual electrical energy is removed from larger, more reactive batteries. If required, the batteries undergo Toxcos patented cryogenic process and are cooled to around -163C. The batteries are then safely sheared/shredded and the materials are separated. Metals are collected and sold, while lithium components are separated and transformed into lithium carbonate and sold. Toxic electrolytes are neutralized to form stable compounds and the residual plastic casings and miscellaneous components recovered for appropriate recycling or scrapping. If any cobalt is present, it is also reclaimed for reuse.
Toxco also provides technology for recycling alkaline and prismatic, or non-lithium, batteries. The patented processes are safe and reliable. In addition, 95 per cent of the processing for reactive metals and batteries use remotely operated techniques.

Contact: Mr. Dave Miller, Toxco Inc., 421 E. Commercial St., Anaheim, CA 92801, United States of America. Tel: +1 (714) 8792 067; Fax: +1 (714) 4410 857.

E-mail: dmiller320



Air and industrial flue gas cleaning system

Vortex Ecological Technologies Co., Israel, has developed technology to separate solid particles and a variety of gases from flue gas streams. The Advanced Vortex Chamber technology can be employed for cleaning air and industrial flue gases. At a facility producing lime products for variegated uses, application of wet-vortex cleaning has yielded dramatic results, including:

  • Reduction in the emission of kiln-dust particles from 1,100 mg/Nm3 to less than 25 mg/Nm3;
  • Lower emission of hydrate-lime from 4,000 mg/Nm3 to less than 120 mg/Nm3 (captured hydrate-lime is returned for recycling);
  • Considerable decrease in fresh water requirements; and
  • During a year of operation, no hard sediments were built up on the chambers and pipe walls, thereby lowering maintenance costs as well as production losses.
Contact: Vortex Ecological Technologies Ltd., P.O. Box 10056, Haifa Bay, Israel. Tel: +972 (4) 8417 258; Fax: +972 (4) 8422 550;



Ionizing wet scrubber

Ceilcote Air Pollution Control of the United States is offering ionizing wet scrubber (ISW) for simultaneous removal of gases and particulate with opacity reduction. The new patented system integrates particle removal capabilities of an electrostatic precipitator with the effective gas removal features of a crossflow scrubber in a compact and modular concept. Contaminated gases pass through a horizontal charging section prior to entering a packed section containing Tellerette packing. The particulate is then charged and collected on both the ionizer plates and packing via common electrostatic principles and image force attraction. Gases are also absorbed and neutralized in the packed section. The crossflow configuration allows use of multiple stages where very high efficiency of sub-micron particulate is needed. Key features of ISW include:
  • Capacities from 1,000 to 50,000 ACFM (with staging);
  • Collects particulates of almost any type and size regardless of composition;
  • Proven performance to < 0.001 g/DSCF and zero opacity;
  • Low energy required with typical pressure drops at 0.5-1.5 inch WC per stage;
  • Simultaneous gas absorption and neutralization; and
  • Corrosion resistant construction.
The IWS can be easily retrofitted to existing equipment trains to meet new regulatory rules.

Contact: Ceilcote Air Pollution Control, 14955, Sprague Rd., Suite 250, Strongsville, OH 44136, United States of America. Tel: +1 (440) 2430 700; Fax: +1 (440) 2439 854.


Breakthrough in CO2 absorbing ceramics

In Japan, Toshiba Corp. and Toshiba Ceramics Co. Limited have jointly developed a lithium silicate-based ceramic material with an exceptional capability for carbon dioxide (CO2) absorption. At room temperature, the material can absorb 400 times its own volume of CO2. Moreover, the ceramic material is capable of over 500 cycles of absorption and discharge without any adverse effect on the absorbing capability.

Lithium silicate CO2-absorbing ceramics were hitherto available only in a cylindrical form, which decelerates absorption at room temperature. The cylindrical lithium silicate exhibited a conspicuous slump in absorbing quality after repeated use, as the absorbed CO2 gradually builds up inside the cylinder. Toshibas breakthrough has enabled production of spherical lithium silicate ceramics with a granular form that absorbs CO2 at a 10-times faster rate.


Desulphurization of natural and industrial gas streams

The Institute of Biochemical Physics, Russia, has developed a principally new technology for desulphurizing gases on the basis of liquid phase oxidation of hydrogen sulphide and sulphur dioxide into sulphuric acid using oxygen from air in an aqueous mix in the presence of an accessible homogeneous catalyst. This method can be used for almost any gas-condensate deposits. For low-sulphur natural gases, large gas reserves, which have not been utilized before because of the lack of cost-effective sulphur cleaning means, can now be commissioned. For high-sulphur gas-condensate deposits considerable economic benefits are feasible with a complete lack of damaging effect on the environment.

The new process concurrently yields clean gas and sulphuric acid. Production of sulphuric acid is presently based on a complex and multi-stage technology that employs a heterogeneous catalyst under considerable limitations on sulphur dioxide concentration and it is accompanied by harmful emissions.

Contact: The Institute of Biochemical Physics, 4, Kosygin Str., Moscow 117997,
Russia. Tel: +7 (095) 1357 894; Fax: +7 (095) 1374 101.



Dry type concurrent DeSOx-DeNOx process

Mitsui Mining Co. Ltd., Japan, has developed the worlds first dry process for concurrent desulphurization (DeSOx) and denitrification (DeNOx) of flue gas streams. Mitsui-BF integrates three stages adsorption, desorption and, an optional, by-product recovery. This technique can be applied for removing SOx, NOx, dust and toxic trace elements from boiler, furnace and chemical plant flue gases.

During the adsorption phase, flue gas passes through a bed of activated coke, moving downwards in the two-stage adsorber at a constant flow rate. In the first stage, SOx are removed by the process of adsorption into activated coke. Next the gas stream flows through activated coke bed in the second stage. Here, it works as a catalyst in the decomposition of NOx to nitrogen and water, by injecting ammonia into the activated coke bed. The adsorber, with its moving coke bed, functions also as a particulate remover. This phase reduces particulate emissions to below 30 mg/m3N when inlet particulate concentrations are kept within 500 mg/m3N.

In the desorption stage, activated coke saturated with SOx is conveyed by bucket elevators to the desorber, and regenerated at a temperature of 400-500C. Following cooling, the regenerated activated coke passes over a vibrating screen to eliminate mechanically and/or chemically degraded material, and is then recycled back to the adsorber. In the process of regenerating activated coke in the desorption unit, by-product recovery phase, the released SO2-rich gas can be treated to yield elemental sulphur or sulphuric acid by standard methods.

Contact: Mitsui Mining Co. Ltd., 3-3, Toyosu 3-chome, Koto-ku, Tokyo 135 6007, Japan. Tel: +81 (3) 5560 2902; Fax: +81 (3) 5560 2913.


Source Website:

New scrubbers

Altech Technology Systems Inc. of Canada, is offering new air pollution control systems. The Reither unit is a patented design for sub-micron particles and variable gas flows. It provides for a small footprint, high efficiency and reliability. An adjustable throat accommodates varying gas flow loads. Collection efficiencies greater than 99 per cent could be achieved for particles less than 3 m in diameter. This system is also efficient for acid mists and aerosols.

Designed for gas capture and recovery, the novel packed tower wet scrubber features a vertical counter-current concept for highly efficient absorption of problem gases. The contaminated emissions are drawn upwards through a packed tower and scrubbing liquid proceeds down and around the packing material. Efficiencies higher than 98 per cent are possible. The Esco tray scrubber is designed to offer efficiency in energy and water consumption. This unit integrates barriers to split the gas stream and effect the removal of all soluble gases. Ideal for product recovery and recycling situations, it offers high removal efficiency, more than 99 per cent, and low water consumption. It has proved to be cost-effective in steel pickling.

For larger particles and variable gas flows, particulate cyclones are available. Constructed using plastic or metal components, these units have no moving components. Refractory lined units could be built for high-temperature uses. Clean exhaust gas is discharged from the top and solids discharged from the bottom.

Contact: Mr. Alex R. Keen, Altech Technology Systems Inc., 12, Banigan Drive, Toronto, Ontario M4H 1E9, Canada. Tel: +1 (416) 4675 555; Fax: +1 (416) 4679 824.



Superior wet scrubber

Tri-Mer Corp., the United States, is offering a cloud chamber scrubber (CCS), developed by Atmospheric Physics Inc. In the CCS unit, billions of droplets and particles move continuously in relation to each other. As they approach 10 m of separation, electrical attraction causes particulates to enter into the droplets. A key advantage of CCS in controlling sub-micron particulate is the need for less than one inch of pressure drop per CCS stage under full load operation. By contrast, Venturi units typically require 40-70 inch while diffusion candles need 16-20 inch of pressure drop. Also, electrostatic precipitators require over 100 times greater power than a CCS system. Another distinguishing feature is the CCS ability to remove fumes and gases, including HCl, HF, HNO3, Cl2, SO2, H2SO4 and NH3, and others together with the particulate.

Contact: Tri-Mer Corp., 1400, Monroe Street, P.O. Box 730, Owosso, MI 48867, United States of America. Tel: +1 (989) 7237 838; Fax: +1 (989) 7237 844.




Chemical Water and Wastewater Treatment VII

This guidebook provides authoritative coverage of key developments in the chemical treatment of water and wastewater, both in theory and practice, and related problems like sludge production and properties, and reuse of chemicals and chemically treated water and sludge. Contributions on energy and sustainability ensure that the mostly technical solutions proposed are viewed in a broader context of public acceptance, economics and ecological balance. Other topics of interest are coagulation/flocculation mechanisms, flocculation and floc separation, chemical dosing control, oxidation processes, cryptosporidium removal, wastewater and sludge treatment, etc.

Contact: IWA Publishing, Alliance House, 12, Caxton Street, London SW1H 0QS, United Kingdom. Tel: +44 (020) 7654 5517; Fax: +44 (020) 7654 5555.

Environmentally Sound Technology for Wastewater and Stormwater Management

This international sourcebook is the result of a UNEP initiative in response to the need for information specifically for decision makers in developing nations as well as countries with economy in transition. The urgent need is highlighted by the fact that two-thirds of the world population do not have access to adequate sanitation. It provides information on the basis for wastewater and stormwater management to achieve sustainability.

Contact: IWA Publishing, Alliance House, 12, Caxton Street, London SW1H 0QS, United Kingdom. Tel: +44 (020) 7654 5517; Fax: +44 (020) 7654 5555.

Handbook of Solid Waste Management

This second edition focuses on six primary functions of an integrated system source reduction, toxicity reduction, recycling and reuse, composting, waste-to-energy, combustion and landfilling. It fully explores each technology and examines its problems, costs and legal as well as social ramifications. It includes updated chapters on solid waste characteristics, recycling, landfilling and federal and state regulations. There is also new material on optical separation technologies, weight-based collection systems, yard waste management, economies, collection cost and technologies, and safety and risk assessment.

Contact: McGraw-Hill Companies, P.O. Box 182604, Columbus, OH 43272, United States of America.


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