Introduction to Thermal and Catalytic Oxidizers

It is not easy to clean up an area that has been affected with pollution. Sometimes, the results of chemical runoff or other industrial waste upon the natural world can be horrible beyond words. This is why both law and morality demand the use of certain procedures when dealing with potentially hazardous material.

One of the most common methods that has been created is the use of high-temperature oxidation to break down pollutants, filtering them at the same time. Using these methods, many harmful pollutants are kept from entering our atmosphere, soil and water. If you’re like me, you have wondered about that white smoke that you see pouring from the smokestacks of various factories. However, most of the time these emissions are simply carbon dioxide and water. While there are certainly some issues with carbon dioxide, it could be much worse.

This process is carried out with the use of certain machines called oxidizers (not to be confused with chemical oxidizers). These are so named because they use high levels of heat to break apart the chemical bonds that hold pollutants together, separating them through filtration so that only water and carbon dioxide remain by the time the emissions leave the stack.

There are two basic kinds: thermal oxidizers and catalytic oxidizers. The only real difference between them is that catalytic oxidizers use a precious metal as a catalyst with which to accelerate the entire process. Both of them work by drawing in the emissions with a fan and directing them into a high-temperature U-shaped chamber. There, the noxious fumes are cooked at a very high temperature. When the target temperature is reached, the valve opens, and the gas is then pulled through a filter and released as water vapor and CO2. By the time the emissions are cooked down, none of the contaminants remain. A complex set of electronic controllers keep all the valves opening and closing at the right times to facilitate this process.

When these machines were first invented, they did not feature a heat exchange system and therefore lost a lot of heat during operation. This resulted in a very poor level of energy efficiency, so later models added the heat exchange system to keep the system from losing its heat.

If you are setting up a business that involves dealing with hazardous material, you cannot afford to be without one of these vital pieces of decontamination equipment. If you have acquired one of these pieces of equipment, there are numerous companies that will buy used catalytic and thermal oxidizers at a reasonable price. As you might imagine, it’s quite a big deal to move one of these!

I hope you have found this material to be helpful and informative. Please remember that the use of such machines is sometimes required by law, so don’t risk it! The environment will thank you for it through its continued sustainment of human life. For all that nature has done for us and continues to do for us, we owe it that much.


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