With oxygen constituting about 21% air and a gaseous specific gravity of 1.1 kPa, industrial and speciality gas products and chemicals provider Air Products highlights the advantages and need for oxygen – which can be stored as gas – and ozone technologies that can address wastewater treatment issues globally.
Air Products national bulk sales manager Sachin Kulkarni tells Engineering News that the principal uses of oxygen stem from its strong oxidising and life-sustaining properties. It is produced by air separation processes that use either cryogenic liquefaction and distillation or vacuum swing adsorption separation. The oxygen can then be stored and shipped as either a gas or cryogenic liquid.
Owing to this, Air Products developed the Oxy-Dep technology, which aims to optimise waste water processing and address biological oxygen demand. Oxy-Dep is a biological wastewater treatment process that uses pure an oxygen instead of air. This type of treatment method, which uses oxygen-based, technology to purify and neutralise wastewater, is gaining popularity in various industries globally, the company notes.
Moreover, the company points out that some of the common wastewater treatment issues include overloading a plant’s treatment capacity constraints, odours, the inability to handle seasonal variations (particularly at tourist destinations) and the settling of sediment at the bottom of the aera- tion tanks.
A direct benefit of using oxygen-based technologies is the efficient settling of sediment, which enables solids to settle while the oils float to the top of the tank and are skimmed. Using such a technology also reduces emissions of volatile organic compounds and odours, foaming and aerosols.
Oxygen-based technology applications are used in the steelmaking process and metal cutting. In the chemical and petroleum industries, oxygen is used in the production of a wide variety of fuels and chemicals, while it is also used, for example, in pulp bleaching, black liquor oxidation and lime-kiln enrichment in the pulp and paper industry.
Further, in the glass industry, oxygen and fuel combustion is used to reduce particulate and nitrogen oxide emissions in melting operations. Oxygen is also used for gasification applications in producing synthesis gas to produce chemicals, fuels, electricity, hydrogen or steam.
Air Products stresses that wastewater technologies must have economic benefits for consumer companies, in addition to being environment friendly.
Moreover, the company is continually looking for ways of optimising wastewater treatment facilities through implementing improved oxygen-based technologies.
Air Products works with original-equipment manufacturers and environmental organisations, as well as end-users, to provide tailor-made solutions for the treatment of wastewater.