Mass balance of mercury in a pilot scale mercury recovery plant using thermal roasting technology

Eun Song Lee, Seung Ki Back, A. H.M. Mojammal, Yong Chil Seo, Ha Na Jang

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1 Citation (Scopus)


A pilot scale mercury recovery plant was developed to treat Hg waste by thermal treatment. The capacity of the system was 60 kg/batch and consisted of four units carrying out thermal treatment, dust separation, condensation, and flue gas treatment. The mass balances of Hg from five different wastes in three categories were calculated from Hg recovery data. From the following selected five wastes, Hg-added product, Hg-contaminated soil, byproduct of fluorescent lamp treatment process, and waste sludge from non-ferrous metal industrial process, we recovered 97.5%, 83.61%, 93.07%, 70.25%, and 29.36% of elemental mercury, respectively. Dust interfered during the condensation process, as volatilized Hg vapor was condensed with dust. Hg concentrations in leaching extract of treatment residues from the Hg-added product, Hg-contaminated soil, and the byproduct of fluorescent lamp treatment process were 0.003 mg-Hg/L, 0.0045 mg-Hg/L, and 0.002 mg-Hg/L, respectively, which are below the Korean classification standard of hazardous waste for mercury (0.005 mg-Hg/L). Hg concentration in flue gas was lower than 15 μg-Hg/m3 after passing through the activated carbon trap. Byproducts of the pilot scale system, such as activated carbon and dust can be further treated and converted to Hg free waste.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)886-893
Number of pages8
JournalAtmospheric Pollution Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2020 May

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP) and the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) of the Republic of Korea (No. 20184030202240 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Atmospheric Science


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