HomeInhenyeriyavol. 3 no. 1 (2003)

Alternative Technology Options For the Chemical Treatment of Polychlorinated Biphenyls

Carmela R. Centeno | Susan M. Gallardo | Leonila C. Abella

Discipline: Engineering



Although high temperature incineration technology is a standard method of destruction of bulk polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), any high-temperature burning is prohibited under the Clean Air Act of the Philippines. The formation and subsequent release of toxic gases IS also a constant issue in the application of incineration for toxic and hazardous wastes. This paper presents several viable non-incineration technologies for their applicability to and limitations for treating PCB-contaminated materials. The following alternative technologies are presented: chemical dechlorination, chemical reduction, solvent extraction, soil washing and soil flushing, including emerging alternative technologies, such as supercritical water oxidation, solvated electron technology and advanced oxidation processes. The paper covers a description of each technology, matrix-applicability, and advantages and limitations of some technology options. From the discussion, it is apparent that the selection of applicable technology depends mainly on site- and matrix-specific characteristics. It may also be noted that no single non-incineration chemical technology is applicable to all PCB-contaminated materials. Combining two or more technologies in series may offer advantages over the use of a single technology in achieving the required degree of treatment.