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Thermal Oxidizer Design

Virtually every industrial manufacturing process results in waste products which in today's environment cause disposal concerns. Thermal oxidation has proven over the years to be an effective and safe method for the disposal of a wide variety of industrial wastes provided proper thermal oxidizer design practices are followed.

Thermal oxidizer design can be relatively straight forward or complex depending on the application, waste characteristics, and the air permit emission requirements. Most thermal oxidizer designs incorporate similar design principles to ensure that the desired oxidation reaction occurs and the waste stream contaminants are reduced to the levels necessary to achieve emission compliance.

To develop a thermal oxidizer design, the customer needs to provide the thermal oxidizer supplier with specific process design "inputs" and "outputs". Design inputs are the process application upstream of the thermal oxidizer and the corresponding waste stream or streams that need treated by the thermal oxidizer. Design outputs are typically the performance requirements and the air emission limits that must be achieved by the thermal oxidizer. Clear definition of the thermal oxidizer design inputs and outputs by the customer is an important first step in any successful thermal oxidizer design process. Typical thermal oxidizer design inputs and outputs are listed as follows:

Typical Design Inputs:

Typical Design Outputs:

Once these thermal oxidizer design parameters are defined, the thermal oxidizer design process can begin. A basic thermal oxidizer system consists of a refractory lined vessel known as the thermal oxidizer, a burner, stack, and combustion controls.

Simply stated, thermal oxidation is the effective employment of a process which provides thorough mixing of an organic substance with sufficient oxygen at a high enough temperature for a sufficient time to cause the organics to oxidize to the desired degree of completion. To achieve successful thermal oxidation, the thermal oxidizer design must include what is known as "The Three T's of Combustion". These are;

The "Three T's of Combustion" along with sufficient oxygen are essential and interrelated in all thermal oxidizer designs. The level of turbulence (mixing), the necessary reaction temperature, and the amount of time (residence time) is primarily dependent on the waste stream characteristics and the level of destruction required for achieving the specific air permit compliance.

Process Combustion Corporation customs designs all of our thermal oxidizer systems. Our extensive industrial application experience coupled with our experience in handling a wide spectrum of waste streams provide us the expertise to determine how best to incorporate the "Three T's of Combustion" in each thermal oxidizer design.

As mentioned above, a basic thermal oxidizer system also includes a refractory system, burner, exhaust stack, and combustion controls. More complex thermal oxidizer systems include heat recovery such as gas to gas heat exchangers and waste heat boilers and additional down stream pollution control equipment such as scrubbers, particulate filters, and wet ESP's. Each of these components have a variety of important design features (too extensive to discuss here) that must be considered to ensure the complete thermal oxidizer "system" is safe, reliable, and meets all performance objectives.

Other important factors a potential buyer should consider when evaluating a thermal oxidizer supplier include the following:

To find out more about how PCC is the right choice for your next thermal oxidizer system, contact us directly at (412) 655-0955, or complete our Thermal Oxidizer Inquiry form and return to us for pricing and information.


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Thermal Oxidizers

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Process Combustion Corporation

5460 Horning Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15236

Phone: +1(412) 655-0955
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