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Effect of hydrothermal carbonization on migration and environmental risk of heavy metals in sewage sludge during pyrolysis

Liu, Tingting, Liu, Zhengang, Zheng, Qingfu, Lang, Qianqian, Xia, Yu, Peng, Nana, Gai, Chao
Bioresource technology 2018 v.247 pp. 282-290
heavy metals, hydrochars, hydrothermal carbonization, pyrolysis, risk, sewage sludge, temperature
The heavy metals distribution during hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) of sewage sludge, and pyrolysis of the resultant hydrochar was investigated and compared with raw sludge pyrolysis. The results showed that HTC reduced exchangeable/acid-soluble and reducible fraction of heavy metals and lowered the potential risk of heavy metals in sewage sludge. The pyrolysis favored the transformation of extracted/mobile fraction of heavy metals to residual form especially at high temperature, immobilizing heavy metals in the chars. Compared to the chars from raw sludge pyrolysis, the chars derived from hydrochar pyrolysis was more alkaline and had lower risk and less leachable heavy metals, indicating that pyrolysis imposed more positive effect on immobilization of heavy metals for the hydrochar than for sewage sludge. The present study demonstrated that HTC is a promising pretreatment prior to pyrolysis from the perspective of immobilization of heavy metals in sewage sludge.