Catalyst Ceramic Filter Elements To Control Air Pollution

Catalyst ceramic filter elements can achieve simultaneous removal of multiple air-pollutant species in a modular, space-saving layout

Catalyst-impregnated ceramic filter elements can achieve simultaneous removal of multiple air-pollutant species in a modular, space-saving layout

The three most common pollutants found in the air we breathe are particulate matter (PM), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and sulfur oxides (SOx). These three major sources of pollution can trigger respiratory difficulties and asthma, as well as cause environmental harm in the forms of acid rain, visibility impairments and water-quality impacts. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA; Washington, D.C.; www.epa.gov) regulates all three pollutants, which may be emitted in fluegas from coal-fired power plants, fertilizer plants, glass manufacturing plants, cement plants, petroleum refineries and other industrial facilities. The EPA manages a comprehensive enforcement and compliance database of thousands of industrial plants in the U.S. via the Enforcement and Compliance History Online (ECHO) system (echo.epa.gov).

Currently, industrial pollution-control equipment installations are dominated by baghouse fabric filters and electrostatic precipitators (ESPs). Simultaneous removal of the three major pollutants from fluegas can also be achieved with catalyst-impregnated ceramic filter elements within one housing-boxed system (Figure 1). Such catalyst ceramic filtration (CCF) installations can achieve simultaneous pollutant removal with lower capital expenditure and plot-space requirements than traditional baghouse or ESP configurations. Figure 2 summarizes the removal efficiencies of a CCF unit for various pollutants. CCF systems have seen successful installations in many industrial applications, including the following:

  • Hazardous waste incineration
  • Industrial waste incineration
  • Glass industry furnaces (float glass, tableware and container)
  • Biomass energy plants
  • Synthesis gas (syngas) processing
  • Regenerative thermal oxidizer exhaust
  • Ceramic kiln exhaust
  • Catalyst manufacturing
  • Munitions incineration
Originally published at Chemical Engineering

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