A pharmaceutical manufacturer based in the western United States installed a direct-fired thermal oxidizer (DFTO) for the abatement of volatile organic compounds.

The direct-fired thermal oxidizer, designed and supplied by Catalytic Products International, Lake Zurich, Ill., replaces a roof-mounted thermal oxidizer system. The new oxidizer will allow the pharmaceutical manufacturer to meet current BACT and NOX requirements and provide equipment to maintain compliance with Clean Air Act standards. CPI also provided startup and commissioning services.

The 1,000 scfm direct-fired thermal oxidizer controls the emissions from a pharmaceutical vacuum drying process with 99 percent destruction rate efficiency. The concentrated solvent vapor stream consists of mixed solvents, including toluene, hexane, methanol, acetone and as well as smaller amounts of ACN, THF, DMF, ethyl acetate and silica organic solvents. In the oxidizer, the VOCs are chemically oxidized to form inert byproducts like carbon dioxide (CO2), water vapor (H2O) and usable heat. The byproducts can be released to the atmosphere or used within primary or secondary energy recovery techniques.