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Exhaust air without organic chemicals

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Exhaust air without organic chemicals

Exhaust air without organic chemicals

ID: F1509-09

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as benzene and styrene can be hazardous to our wellness since well as the environment. Researchers are working on removing VOCs from commercial atmosphere emissions with the use of biotechnology. Three institutions have joined forces to eliminate VOCs from polluted industrial air emissions under the umbrella of the THEN AIR BIOTREAT project. Analysis collaboration led to the successful development of a novel hybrid biotechnology for treatment of hydrophilic VOCs. This set-up has been upgraded to industrial scale with a model product presently under operation. Definitely promising preliminary results have resulted in a patent. A pilot biotrickling filtration device had been set-up demonstrating efficient elimination of styrene from air emissions. From a financial and environmental point of view, this set-up proved superior to other technologies such as regenerative thermal oxidiser and activated carbon. Empirical information on filter overall performance has been generated to develop a mathematical model and control software to further optimise this technology. Researchers are currently testing a serial system incorporating a photocatalytic and biotrickling filter. In parallel, project members are developing a networking information platform for information processing and tracking of biotechnology systems. The project has advanced understanding of bioprocesses for VOC elimination from polluted air. Commercial exploitation of developed technologies will enhance the competition and visibility of participating institutions and promote the jobs of the scientists included. This has significant implications with respect to improving health and protecting the environment.

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