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Taking UV/O3 VOC treatment one cleaner step forward

By Gerald Ondrey |

Using ultraviolet (UV) radiation or ozone (or both) to oxidize air pollutants, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) is a well-established treatment method in the chemical process industries (CPI). What is not so well known, however, is that for most pollutants, the oxidation products of UV/O3 treatment, such as O3, formaldehyde and a whole range of other semi-oxidized compounds, can be significantly more hazardous than the original VOC, says Nicolai Bork, product manager – Industrial Pollution Control at Infuser ApS (Copenhagen, Denmark; www.infuser.eu). “Alarmingly, we see many installations using just UV/O3 where factory owners have never been informed about these issues.” Infuser has taken conventional UV/O3 technologies a step further by incorporating a catalytic filter to the normal UV-treatment section. Developed in close collaboration with the University of Copenhagen, the company’s Climatic air-purification technology (diagram) is based on accelerating the self-cleansing mechanisms of the atmosphere — namely, a carefully adjusted combination of gaseous oxidants, water vapor and UV light, explains Bork. This produces OH radicals that oxidize VOCs into oxidation products (OxVOCs) that precipitate out of the…
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