Streamlined soil remediation with activated carbon

Aircon H - Remediation - Desotec

Many former industrial sites still show traces of dumped chemicals and other unusable fractions from the past, when companies often dealt with their waste streams in a less responsible manner. Companies that specialise in remediation often combine forces with Desotec to ensure remediation projects have every chance to succeed.

At a site in Germany that was primarily home to chemical and pharmaceutical companies between 1950 and 1980, a company charged with the remediation of this zone found a mix of numerous contaminants. The company found all types of fluids and other chemicals at the dump site. It was commissioned to categorise all waste streams and to safely transport the hazardous substances to a regeneration plant.

This client, who had already previously worked with Desotec on several occasions, again called upon our services for this project. To prevent the chemical waste from the dump site entering the surrounding area, the contractor installed a large tent over the entire domain. The aim was to fully filter all substances that could represent a hazard to the ambient air.

We decided to install two AIRCON H filters in series within this context. Prior to this two-step purification method, the contractor also installed a particulate filter. This ensures that only completely volatile substances end up in the filter system. The first filter basically removes all contaminants and the second filter acts as a back-up and is installed to guarantee optimum safety.

Desotec decided to use activated carbon R-PURE for this project, which is perfectly capable of eliminating all environmentally polluting compounds from the air streams. Once saturated, we transport the mobile filter to the main site in Roeselare (Belgium), where the saturated carbon can again be deployed for similar projects after treatment in the reactivation furnace.

The two-step filter system was commissioned approximately a year ago and is still operating optimally for the long-term remediation project.


At DESOTEC’s facilities, all used carbon is analysed so the right measures can be taken for handling and removing the saturated carbon out of the mobile filters. All molecules that were adsorbed on the activated carbon at the customers’ site, are desorbed inside DESOTEC’s reactivation furnaces. These contaminants are then fully destroyed, in accordance with National and European legislationby an incineration and neutralisation setup. The entire installation and it's emissions are under continuous on-line monitoring, which guarantees that only harmless water vapour is seen exiting the chimney.