Mechelen, Belgium
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Vorst G.V.D.,Ghent University | Swart P.,Ghent University | Aelterman W.,Janssen Pharmaceutical | Brecht A.V.,Indaver | And 3 more authors.
Resources, Conservation and Recycling | Year: 2010

In this article, for the treatment of two specific pharmaceutical waste solvents the resource consumption of an on-site distillation process is evaluated and compared with an off-site incineration process. Both techniques are evaluated based on a thermodynamic quantitative method. The exergy approach and the cumulative exergy extracted from the natural environment (CEENE) are envisaged in order to evaluate the overall resource intake at different levels. Scenarios are constructed to make a fair comparison of both techniques. Two waste solvents, toluene (TOL) and dichloromethane (DCM), from the pharmaceutical industry which are frequently sent to distillation were evaluated. The functional unit for the comparison of both treatment alternatives is the treatment of 1 kg waste solvent + the incineration of W kg low calorific hazardous waste + the delivery of X kg "recovered" solvent + the production of Y MJ heat and Z MJ electricity. W, X, Y and Z depend on the waste solvent properties. In terms of resource requirements, distillation requires 17% (TOL) and 66% (DCM) less resources than incineration. It can be concluded that the waste solvent properties, the efficiency of the distillation process and the efficiency of the fresh solvent production process are of major importance on the resource consumption and the final choice between incineration and distillation. For a full environmental impact analysis of both treatment options, also the emissions should be taken into account. It also has to be stressed that in practice, only solvents go to incineration which cannot be distilled due to the type and degree of pollution/composition of the solvent. If distillation is not feasible, then such solvents are sent to incineration with energy recovery, according to the EU directive 2006/12/EG. © 2010 Elsevier B.V.

Block C.,Catholic University of Leuven | Van Caneghem J.,Catholic University of Leuven | Van Brecht A.,Indaver | Wauters G.,Indaver | Vandecasteele C.,Catholic University of Leuven
Waste and Biomass Valorization | Year: 2015

The first objective of any waste policy should be to minimize the negative effects of the generation and management of waste on human health and the environment. Re-use and recycling of waste, although of high priority in the waste hierarchy, is not necessarily always the best treatment method. In the case of hazardous waste containing toxic components, thermal treatment with energy recovery constitutes a cost effective treatment option, complying with the pillars of “Sustainability” and the requirements of “Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production”. Iron recovery from the incineration ashes, water recycling, substitution of fossil fuel by high calorific waste in the incineration process, and energy recovery, avoid the use of non-renewable resources. Emissions to air and discharges to water of a typical rotary kiln for the incineration of hazardous waste, are far below the European emission limit values. Furthermore, recent studies on health effects of modern, state-of-the art waste incinerators show that any potential damage to the health of those living close-by or working in a hazardous waste incineration plant, is likely to be very small, if detectable. © 2014, Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.

Lievens P.,Catholic University of Leuven | Lievens P.,Groep T Leuven Engineering College | Verbinnen B.,Catholic University of Leuven | Bollaert P.,Indaver | And 4 more authors.
Environmental Technology | Year: 2011

Blocking of the collection hoppers of the baghouse filters in a fluidized bed incinerator for co-incineration of high calorific industrial solid waste and sludge was observed. The composition of the flue gas cleaning residue (FGCR), both from a blocked hopper and from a normal hopper, was investigated by (differential) thermogravimetric analysis, quantitative X-ray powder diffraction and wet chemical analysis. The lower elemental carbon concentration and the higher calcium carbonate concentration of the agglomerated sample was the result of oxidation of carbon and subsequent reaction of CO 2 with CaO. The evolved heat causes a temperature increase, with the decomposition of CaOHCl as a consequence. The formation of calcite and calcium chloride and the evolution of heat caused agglomeration of the FGCR. Activated lignite coke was replaced by another adsorption agent with less carbon, so the auto-ignition temperature increased; since then no further block formation has occurred. © 2011 Taylor & Francis.

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