Study of mercury in by-products from a Dutch co-combustion power station

Manuela Rallo, M. Antonia Lopez-Anton, Ruud Meij, Ron Perry, M. Mercedes Maroto-Valer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


Fly ashes and gypsum are one of the main wastes produced in coal-fired power stations which may be sent to landfills for their disposal. in this work, leaching and speciation of mercury in fly ashes and gypsum from a modern co-combustion power plant equipped with a selective catalytic reduction (SCR) unit in the Netherlands were studied. The mercury leachable contents were checked against different regulations, including Dutch, German and the Council Directive 2003/33/EC. The speciation of mercury in coal combustion products is essential not only to determine the risk when the wastes are finally disposed but also to understand the behaviour of mercury during combustion and therefore to select the appropriate mercury removal technology. A temperature-programmed decomposition technique was used in order to identify and quantify which mercury species are associated with coal combustion products. The main mercury species identified in fly ash samples was mercury sulphate, whereas in the gypsum sample the mercury present was mercury chloride. The quantitative mercury results carried out using the thermal desorption method may be considered accurate. The results obtained show that fly ash and gypsum samples from this power plant can be acceptable at landfills as a non-hazardous waste. (C) 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28-33
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Issue number1-3
Publication statusPublished - 15 Feb 2010


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