Microwave co-pyrolysis was examined as an approach for simultaneous reduction and treatment of environmentally hazardous hospital plastic waste (HPW), lignocellulosic (palm kernel shell, PKS) and triglycerides (waste vegetable oil, WVO) biowaste as co-feedstock. The co-pyrolysis demonstrated faster heating rate (16-43 °C/min) compared to microwave pyrolysis of single feedstock (9-17 °C/min). Microwave co-pyrolysis of HPW/WVO performed at 1:1 ratio produced a higher yield (80.5 wt%) of hydrocarbon liquid fuel compared to HPW/PKS (78.2 wt%). The liquid oil possessed a low nitrogen content (< 4 wt%) and free of sulfur that could reduce the release of hazardous pollutants during its use as fuel in combustion. In particular, the liquid oil obtained from co-pyrolysis of HPW/WVO has low oxygenated compounds (< 16%) leading to reduction in generation of potentially hazardous sludge or problematic acidic tar during oil storage. Insignificant amount of benzene derivatives (< 1%) was also found in the liquid oil, indicating the desirable feature of this pyrolysis approach to suppress the formation of toxic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Microwave co-pyrolysis of HPW/WVO improved the yield and properties of liquid oil for potential use as a cleaner fuel, whereas the liquid oil from co-pyrolysis of HPW/PKS is applicable in the synthesis of phenolic resin.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.