Something old, something new
Air-Water Treatment and Plasma Clean have shown that the future of odour abatement is a combination of the traditional and modern
With ever tightening environmental pollution legislation, the impact on odour control in waste water treatment facilities can be huge. British companies Air-Water Treatment (AWT) and Plasma Clean have come together to prove traditional and new technologies are the future of odour abatement in the sewage industry.
In a recent pilot scale study, companies from all over Europe were invited to take part in a pilot scale study to design a system to combat VOC emissions from a Polish sewage sludge drying facility.
One of those asked to take part was Flintshire-based Air-Water Treatment, which has been providing a substantial range of odour abatement equipment to the water industry for more than 30 years.
Having assessed the design for the pilot study, John Naylor, MD of AWT, says: “Because the sewage sludge drying process is one of the most complicated processes for odour control, we knew the design of that system would mean there would be some breakthrough of difficult hydrocarbons such as aldehyde and ketone compounds”
The solution to this breakthrough problem was to talk to David Glover, managing director of Plasma Clean, a spin out company from the University of Manchester. Plasma Clean is one of the UK’s leading developers of innovative air purification systems. The two companies came up with a design that not only proved new and traditional can work together efficiently, it also beat rivals from Germany and Italy in the Polish study.
At the site’s inlet point the total hydrocarbon levels were 45ppm. After being treated by a combination of AWT and Plasma Clean technology the measured total hydrocarbons were 0ppm over a five-month period.
In this study AWT used a combination of bio-filtration, wet scrubbing and its Peacemaker dry scrubber to treat the sulphides, mercaptans, amines and ammonia compounds within the gas stream.
Once these VOCs had been treated by AWT technology, it was Plasma Clean’s turn. The air was initially treated by the Xtract 2100 where the VOCs were mixed with ozone, which essentially attacks double bonds in VOC molecules by a process known as ozonolysis.
This was followed by treatment in the Techniclean UV-C module, where UV-C light was used to treat the ozone activated air by a process known as photolysis – where photons are used to cleave double bonds in molecules.
During the test phase between June and September 2012, the AWT odour abatement technology reduced the hydrocarbons to 0ppm for three months. When the anticipated breakthrough occurred, Plasma Clean’s ozonolysis and photolysis technology reduced the breakthrough hydrocarbon emissions to 0ppm.
The pilot scale study has given both Air-Water Treatment and Plasma Clean a clear indication that their combined technologies will make a real difference in odour abatement for the wastewater industry.
As Glover says: “The study has demonstrated that our advanced oxidation systems are highly effective for industrial processes when used in combination with AWT’s traditional air treatment systems.”
Naylor agrees: “The technology that is offered by Plasma Clean is a completely different type of odour control. It is an excellent system to go on the back end of our existing and proven technology.
As environmental standards increase there is a need for final polishing, removing difficult VOCs down to the very low levels.
“We see the Plasma Clean system of ozonolysis and photolysis to be the way forward on that.”
The success of their partnership on this pilot study means the two companies will work together on future projects in the water industry and beyond.
- The future of chlorine It's a mainstay of drinking water treatment in the UK, but is it time for the water industry to reconsider its reliance on... Read More >
- Getting to Grips with… landfill leachate Liquid that oozes from landfills can be some of the most challenging of wastewaters to treat, but technology is now... Read More >
- Real-time data enables spot-on coagulant dosing The recent Water Industry Awards saw Severn Trent and Malvern Panalytical recognised for the development of the Online... Read More >
- Going green at Severn Trent's Minworth STW With a £60 million investment aimed at producing 30 per cent more green energy from its largest sewage treatment works,... Read More >
- New dimensions: How BIM drove Scottish Water's Tullich WTW project With ESD making extensive use of BIM including 4D visualisation tools, Scottish Water has successfully completed a £29... Read More >
- Microplastics: Plastics, plastics everywhere There is growing evidence that microplastics passed on through our wastewater have become widespread in aquatic... Read More >
- Offsite build powers South East Water's £22M treatment works expansion South East Water's expansion of Bray Keleher Water Treatment Works is in full swing, with offsite manufacture aiding... Read More >
- Innovation Zone: Pesticide protection Metaldehyde cannot be removed effectively with standard drinking water treatment processes, but there are technologies... Read More >