Direct combustion


Tecam’s direct combustion facilities for the incineration of organic waste

Tecam develops incineration solutions based on direct combustion when it is necessary to significantly reduce the volume of waste and eliminate organic compounds.

Our facilities are customised and tailor-made to meet the requirements of each project, and offer the following advantages (among others):

• Fully automated systems requiring minimal human intervention.

• Components sourced from leading brands and software specifically developed by Tecam.

• Option of treating multiple types of waste in a single system: solid, liquid, slurry, resin, combustible waste, etc.

• Different feed solutions provided in line with the proportions of each of the raw materials.

• Recovery and storage solutions for slag and ash.

• Chemical dosing.

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What are the advantages and what types of waste can be treated?

These systems can be used to treat waste, eliminate pollutants and generate energy. They are commonly used to treat solid waste (and can reduce the content of solids by 80-85 % or more) and can also be fed with liquid waste such as solvents. If there are gas flows, these can even be used as fuel.

The treatment process generates a large amount of energy, which can be reused to produce electricity, steam or hot water for the plant’s own consumption (or for sale). As such, it offers twin benefits: the generation of a large amount of reusable energy in a short space of time, and a major reduction in the volume of waste.

Commonly treated types of waste include those of urban, hospital, industrial, hazardous, radioactive and agricultural origin.

The waste incineration process

Direct combustion, also known as incineration, is the process by which organic matter (always comprising carbon and hydrogen) reacts with an excess of oxygen to produce carbon dioxide and water, with a minimal amount of ash as a by-product.

This process takes place in combustion kilns, which must maintain a minimal amount of oxygen (usually 6 %, although 11 % may also be required) at the output in order to ensure complete combustion. If there is insufficient oxygen, the combustion reaction will not be complete and compounds may be generated that are not fully oxidised, such as monoxides and other pollutants (e.g. SOx, NOx, HCl and particulate matter).

It is a process that must take place at a high temperature (800 °C – 1100 °C), depending on the amount of halogenated elements in the waste (chlorine, fluorine, bromine).

Direct combustion generates energy in the form of heat. This energy can then be used to generate steam and electricity via turbines, power for the plant’s own consumption, hot water for domestic heating, and other energy recovery applications.


Main components

  • Input device: valves or another mechanism that allows for controlled feeding of the kiln. Examples include ram feeders.
  • Furnace (rotary or static): large flows usually require continuous operation. Rotary kilns are normally used for solid waste, while static kilns are used for gases and liquid waste.
  • Rotary kilns have a mechanism that rotates the entire cylinder, moving the solid compounds in order to facilitate combustion.
  • Burner: if the waste itself does not contain energy, the system will require a heat-generating device. This takes the form of a burner, which is normally fed by natural gas, although other fuels can also be used. Burners oxidise the natural gas with an excess of air, thereby generating a flame that will heat the chamber if the temperature in the kiln is low.
  • Extraction device: all waste contains compounds that cannot be oxidised, which means a device to extract the ash is required. These compounds must be cooled before they can be collected.

Case study: ADNOC

ADNOC is one of the world’s leading petrochemical companies, producing more than 40 million tonnes of refined products every year.

Tecam carried out the engineering, installation and commissioning of an incineration plant for NORM (radioactive) waste, along with a flue gas treatment system.

If you would like to find out more about this project, which is unlike any other in the world, you can download the full case study.

Specialists in the sectors that are most sensitive to environmental impacts

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