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Development of a selective absorption process of SOx and NOx from flue gases and biofilm monitoring of biological process for sulfur recovery

Total activity: 5
Type of activity
Competitive project
Funding entity
Funding entity code
140.360,00 €
Start date
End date
Absorción Selectiva, CFD, Microsensors, Monitoring, NOx, Recuperación azufre, Respirometry, SOx, Selective absorption, Sulfate-reduction, Sulfur recovery, Sulfur-oxidation, microsensores, monitorización, respirometría, sulfato-reducción, sulfuro-oxidación
Emissions of SOx and NOx from flue gases require treatment before release into the atmosphere according to the current legislation.
Physical-chemical treatments used so far are expensive and generate effluents that require further processing.
This project faces the challenge of developing a comprehensive treatment process for SOx and NOx from flue gases by economical,
robust and environmentally friendly biological methods that also take into account the reuse of energy and resources in process development as well as residues valorization.
The proposed process is based on i) a first double stage for selective absorption of SOx and NOx, ii) a second biological step catalyzed by
sulfate-reducing microorganisms (SRB) for reducing the sulfate / sulfite mixture from the first absorption stage to hydrogen sulfide, and iii)
a third biological stage catalyzed by sulfide-oxidizing microorganisms (SOB) for the oxidation of hydrogen sulfide to elemental sulfur and its
subsequent recovery. The project focuses on developing a process for recovering, from one side, SOx, and NOx and carbonate /
bicarbonate from another side, as effluents to be used as a source of sulfur and nitrogen in subsequent bioreactors. Segregation of
effluents is achieved from the study of the influence of operational variables in different absorption process, without excluding the use of
selective adsorbents.
To achieve separation and absorption of the compounds of interest, different systems of gas-liquid contact will be used to determine those
settings most likely to succeed. Also, the combination of operational variables (contact time, pH, ionic strength and temperature) which
favor the objectives of the project will be determined. Finally, the data obtained from the project will allow to create a guide of the best
available techniques for a broad range of typical compositions of SOx and NOx emissions from flue gases.
Subsequently, the operational characteristics of the biological stages involved in the project will be analyzed by using flat plate reactors.
Then, by using microsensors developed under the coordinated project, a full hydrodynamic and operational characterization of the
biological reactors will be performed. This study will be also accompanied by a thorough wok of modeling using CFD techniques to
accurately characterize the transport phenomena involved.
Project objectives achievement involves a new paradigm in the field of treatment of gaseous effluents. Specifically, it aims to provide a new
approach to the problems of flue gases, changing the concept we have today that they are harmful and useless residue to address as a
potential valuable effluent. The solution provided by this project involves i) to obtain a product with an interesting economic value (130/
ton), ii) a low consumption of chemical reagents by maximizing the reutilization of effluents from the different stages, iii) to dispose
effluents hardly recoverable, and iv) to reduce treatment costs.
Adm. Estat
Plan Estatal de Investigación Científica y Técnica y de Innovación 2013-2016
Call year
Funcding program
Programa Estatal de I+D+i Orientada a los Retos de la Sociedad
Funding call
Retos de Investigación: Proyectos de I+D+i
Grant institution
Gobierno De España. Ministerio De Economía Y Competitividad, Mineco


Scientific and technological production

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