|dc.contributor.advisor||Arnold, Dave R.||
|dc.contributor.advisor||Ramjugernath, Deresh D.||
|dc.description||Thesis (M.Sc.Eng.)-University of Natal, Durban, 2001.||en
|dc.description.abstract||At present, South Africa has inadequate technology to destroy its hazardous waste, with
approximately 18000 litres of chlorinated hazardous waste stored in this country. Approximately
800 tons of banned or obsolete chemicals are to be sent to Pontypool. Wales, for incineration, at a
considerable cost. Because of the toxic nature of chlorinated waste and their long-term effects on
the environment , a sustainable method of dealing with this type of waste is essential.
Gas phase destruction of methylene chloride, trichlorobenzene and lindane by pyrolysis (i.e.
heating in the absence of oxygen) was attempted. Destruction was effected by high temperature
thermal degradation of molecules into free radicals. These radicals then combine to form hydrogen
chloride and carbon as major products. This method was chosen so as to eliminate the possible
formation of highly toxic oxygenated derivatives such as polychlorinated dibenzofurans and
dibenzodioxins that can be formed during incineration if strict control is not excercised.
The reactor assembly was built in the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of
Natal. 11 incorporates aspects of many different previously designed reactors, as discussed in the
text. Heat for the reactions was supplied by induction. A high frequency induction unit supplied
current to a copper coil. The resulting magnetic field induced current to flow in a susceptor housed
within the copper coil. The susceptor in this case was a graphite tube, which served as both the
heating element and the thermal radiation source, in addition to forming the walls of the reaction
zone. Up and down stream processes were designed and experiments were carried out in which
reaction temperatures (348-1400°C) and residence times (1.3-5.6 seconds) were varied.
Destruction efficiencies of 100% and 99.99% were obtained for methylene chloride and
trichlorobenzene respectively, with inert argon used as the carrier gas. These destruction
efficiencies comply with the 99.99% stipulated by the United States Conservation and Recovery
Act. A cause for concern was the formation of chlorinated benzenes and naphthalenes. Destruction
of lindane proved unsuccessful due to limitations in the vapourisation and feed system and will
have to be investigated further. The method of induction heating was evaluated to be 98.9%
Raw material and utility consumption per ton of waste destroyed by the pyrolysis process was
compared to values for incineration as well as the plasma arc and catalytic extraction processes.
Consumption for pyrolysis compares favourably with all three processes and suggests that the
process could be competitive.
Claims to the success of the technology on a wide scale are limited by the small number of
compounds that were successfully pyrolysed. Results do however indicate much promise for this
technology to be used as a fi nal chlorinated waste destruction unit on an existing process.
Modifications to the existing reactor to improve product recovery and analys is will allow for
temperature and residence time optimisation for a variety of wastes. Additional in strumentation
and process control will allow for kinetic studies to be undertaken in future. This project should be
considered as the first step in an ongoing series of research and subsequent improvements to the
technology presented here.||en
|dc.subject||Organic compounds--Environmental aspects.||en
|dc.subject||Hazardous substances--Environmental aspects.||en
|dc.title||Pyrolysis of chlorinated organic chemicals.||en