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Comment PDF Separation Processes

Acid Recovery Becomes the Norm

By Gerald Ondrey |

As environmental and transportation regulations become more stringent around the world, treating spent acids is becoming less of an option and more of a necessity Acids play many different roles in a large number of sectors of the chemical process industries (CPI). They are used as catalysts or as reagents in chemical synthesis; they are used for leaching metals from ores; for purifying and plating of metals and for cleaning metal surfaces. In some cases, they are also produced as byproducts, and recovered as solutions to prevent their release into the atmosphere as gases. In the course of any of these processes, the acid becomes diluted or contaminated with impurities, or both, creating a waste stream — often in very large volumes — known as spent acid. Re-processing this waste stream is more and more becoming the responsibility of the producer. In the past, such spent acids — depending on the contaminants — could be neutralized and discharged into wastewater treatment plants, or sold to other CPI sectors that could use the acids for purposes where the contaminants would not be problematic. Or the spent acids could be transported to toll manufacturers that specialize in treating the spent acids — removing the contaminants…
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