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Treatments of electric arc furnace dust and halogenated plastic wastes: A review

Al-Harahsheh, M., Al-Nu’airat, J., Al-Otoom, A., Al-hammouri, I., Al-jabali, H., Al-zoubi, M. and Abu Al’asal, S. (2019) Treatments of electric arc furnace dust and halogenated plastic wastes: A review. Journal of Environmental Chemical Engineering, 7 (1). p. 102856.

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This paper reviews the latest research findings on the combined treatment of both electric arc furnace dust (EAFD) and halogenated plastic wastes, mainly polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and brominated flame-retardants (BFRs). EAFD contains heavy metals (Zn, Pb, Fe, Cd, etc.); its disposal using the traditional landfilling method threatens the environment. On the other hand, halogenated plastic wastes accumulate annually at an alarming rate due to their excessive production, consumption, and disposal. PVC, for example, does not decompose naturally; it remains one of the most dangerous plastics, as it contains high proportions of chlorine that is responsible for hazardous emissions of chlorinated organic compounds (dioxins) and hydrochloric acid vapour. Recent research have focused on the combined treatment of PVC/BFRs and EAFD. HCl/HBr acids produced from the pyrolysis of PVC/BFRs can react with the metal oxides in the EAFD to convert them into readily separable metal halides. Alternatively, several researches illustrated the advantages of using additives such as metal oxides during the incineration treatment of waste PVC/BFRs to fix gaseous HCl/HBr, and consequently, EAFD would be considered an excellent and cheap candidate for PVC dechlorination, as well as dehalogenation of other halogenated plastics during thermal recycling processes. In this review we critically discuss literature findings on thermal treatment of PVC/BFR materials under oxidative and pyrolytic environments, typically at temperatures of 200–900 °C in presence of metal oxides or EAFD. We also discuss the treatment/disposal routes for both waste materials (EAFD and halogenated plastic wastes) and the environmental impact of these disposal options. The review, finally, proposes the research necessary to minimize the hazards of these waste materials; Several future research areas were identified including the need to study the behaviour of real EAFD-plastic waste mixtures under oxidative thermal conditions with focus on both the selective recovery of metals and identification, quantification, and minimization of halogenated organic compounds released during the combined thermal treatment.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Engineering and Information Technology
Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
Copyright: © 2018 Elsevier Ltd.
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