Eliminating Plastic and Microplastics in Waste Treatment with AirSCWO Technology
AirSCWO™ could be particularly effective at dealing with microplastics. The small size of these particles can make them difficult to remove from the environment using traditional methods.
Plastic pollution is one of the most pressing environmental problems we face today. It is ubiquitous, found everywhere from the deepest ocean trenches to the highest mountain peaks. The issue is compounded by the fact that plastic is incredibly durable, with some types taking hundreds or even thousands of years to degrade. This has resulted in the accumulation of vast quantities of plastic waste in the environment, with serious consequences for human health, wildlife and ecosystems.
Microplastics, particles of plastic less than 5mm in diameter, are a particularly insidious form of plastic pollution. They originate from a variety of sources, including the breakdown of larger plastic items, microbeads in cosmetics, and synthetic fibers from clothing. Due to their small size, microplastics can be ingested by a wide range of organisms, from microscopic plankton to large marine mammals. They can also absorb and concentrate harmful chemicals from the environment, potentially posing a risk to the health of organisms that ingest them.
Given the scale of the problem, there is a pressing need for innovative solutions to tackle plastic and microplastic pollution. Supercritical water oxidation (SCWO), which can be applied in the form of AirSCWO™ – Air-based Supercritical Water Oxidation. SCWO is a process that uses water in its supercritical state – a phase of water that exists at temperatures and pressures beyond its critical point, where it exhibits properties of both a liquid and a gas – to oxidize organic materials. In this process not only does AirSCWO™ destroys microplastics and hazardous chemicals such as PFAS, but we are left at the end of the process with a safe outcome, including clean water, minerals and energy.
AirSCWO™ is a variant of SCWO that uses air as an oxidant, which has several advantages. The use of air makes the process safe, highly cost-effective and environmentally friendly than traditional SCWO. Moreover, the high temperatures and pressures involved in the process can break down even the most durable plastics, including those that are not normally processed. This makes it a potentially powerful tool for tackling plastic pollution.
AirSCWO™ could be particularly effective at dealing with microplastics. The small size of these particles can make them difficult to remove from the environment using traditional methods. However, because AirSCWO breaks down organic materials at the molecular level, it could potentially eliminate microplastics completely, preventing them from causing further harm to wildlife and ecosystems.
In conclusion, plastic and microplastics pollution is a critical environmental challenge that requires innovative solutions. AirSCWO™ may significantly reduce the amount of plastic waste in the environment.