Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Sciences".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 April 2023) | Viewed by 22141

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Technologies and Installations for Waste Management, Faculty of Energy and Environmental Engineering, Silesian University of Technology, Konarskiego 18 St., 44-100 Gliwice, Poland
Interests: municipal solid waste; waste management; recycling; concrete
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Co-Guest Editor
Department of Building Processes and Building Physics, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Silesian University of Technology, Akademicka 5 St., 44-100 Gliwice, Poland
Interests: concrete technology; waste management; modification of concrete

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Co-Guest Editor
Department of Building Processes and Building Physics, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Silesian University of Technology, Akademicka 5 St., 44-100 Gliwice, Poland
Interests: concrete technology; usage of waste materials in cement and concrete technology; properties of innovative cementitious materials; engineering of building processes

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Currently, waste management represents a major economic and environmental issue throughout the world. Increasing urbanization and population growth leads to high resource consumption, which, in turn, leads to the rapid depletion of natural resources including energy and raw materials, and high amounts of waste. Trends in waste generation show an increase in the volumes of waste produced in most countries, and it is clear that the trend will continue. For most of the ever-increasing amount of waste, no effective uses were found, which results in environmental degradation.

The treatment and disposal of solid waste involve a range of processes including landfill, incineration, composting, all of which may result in emissions to the environment. It is a challenge to reduce the increasing flow of waste. One of the key strategies to manage these problems is using waste as an alternative raw materials and fuel, i.e., evolving toward a circular economy. The circular economy has become a worldwide trend, and presents the only method of economic sustainable development. The circular economy model is an economic system aimed at the reduction of waste produced, by reducing the need for waste, reusing already existing materials, and recycling remaining waste. The circular economy is the most effective method for solving these problems, because the circular economy not only reduces the amount of waste, but also mitigates the depletion of non-renewable resources resulting from economic development, with consequent environmental benefits in terms of energy savings in the production process. Moreover, because of shrinking supplies and the subsequent need to re-use resources for cost-effectiveness, a circular economy should be developed. The development of a circular economy approach will be conducive to exploring new opportunities for urban and environmental protection.

Therefore, waste management as a basic form of environment and resources depletion protection should be considered in the light of the newest finding in all fields of science. It is crucial that we develop and promote innovative methods and materials that ensure the sustainable management of by-products and waste management, energy production from renewable sources, and new ways of decreasing the pollution. Therefore, we encourage you to submit articles covering these topics:

  • Innovative materials involving waste materials;
  • Waste management challenges in transition to circular economy;
  • Recycling in the circular economy;
  • Roles and opportunities;
  • Sustainable utilization of waste materials;
  • Waste management in line with the idea of closed circuit management;
  • Non-conventional methods of waste materials utilization;
  • Waste as alternative raw materials;
  • Evaluation of alternative energy systems;
  • Soil and water contamination and air pollution control, monitoring and limitation;
  • Industrial waste as alternative raw materials in concrete technology;
  • Municipal waste as alternative raw materials in concrete technology.

Dr. Mohamed Alwaeli
Dr. Jan Pizoń
Dr. Małgorzata Gołaszewska
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • municipal waste
  • industrial waste
  • recycling
  • waste management
  • circular economy

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

14 pages, 3125 KiB  
Article
Effect of Textural Properties on the Degradation of Bisphenol from Industrial Wastewater Effluent in a Photocatalytic Reactor: A Modeling Approach
by May Ali Alsaffar, Mohamed Abdel Rahman Abdel Ghany, Alyaa K. Mageed, Adnan A. AbdulRazak, Jamal Manee Ali, Khalid A. Sukkar and Bamidele Victor Ayodele
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(15), 8966; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13158966 - 04 Aug 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1030
Abstract
Conventional treatment methods such as chlorination and ozonation have been proven not to be effective in eliminating and degrading contaminants such as Bisphenol A (BPA) from wastewater. Hence, the degradation of BPA using a photocatalytic reactor has received a lot of attention recently. [...] Read more.
Conventional treatment methods such as chlorination and ozonation have been proven not to be effective in eliminating and degrading contaminants such as Bisphenol A (BPA) from wastewater. Hence, the degradation of BPA using a photocatalytic reactor has received a lot of attention recently. In this study, a model-based approach using a multilayer perceptron neural network (MLPNN) coupled with back-propagation, as well as support vector machine regression coupled with cubic kernel function (CSVMR) and Gaussian process regression (EQGPR) coupled with exponential quadratic kernel function, were employed to model the relationship between the textural properties such as pore volume (Vp), pore diameter (Vd), crystallite size, and specific surface area (SBET) of erbium- and iron-modified TiO2 photocatalysts in degrading BPA. Parametric analysis revealed that effective degradation of the Bisphenol up to 90% could be achieved using photocatalysts having textural properties of 150 m2/g, 8 nm, 7 nm, and 0.36 cm3/g for SBET, crystallite size, particle diameter, and pore volume, respectively. Fifteen architectures of the MPLNN models were tested to determine the best in terms of predictability of BPA degradation. The performance of each of the MLPNN models was measured using the coefficient of determination (R2) and root mean squared errors (RMSE). The MLPNN architecture comprised of 4 input layers, 14 hidden neurons, and 3 output layers displayed the best performance with R2 of 0.902 and 0.996 for training and testing. The 4-14-3 MLPNN robustly predicted the BPA degradation with an R2 of 0.921 and RMSE of 4.02, which is an indication that a nonlinear relationship exists between the textural properties of the modified TiO2 and the degradation of the BPA. The CSVRM did not show impressive performance as indicated by the R2 of 0.397. Therefore, appropriately modifying the textural properties of the TiO2 will significantly influence the BPA degradability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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18 pages, 13177 KiB  
Article
Design of Pyrolysis Plant for Waste Methyl Ethyl Ketone from the Polarizer Manufacturing Process
by Yan-Quan Zhang, Chih-Hsiang Huang, Chao-Yuan Wu and Yao-Hsuan Tseng
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(13), 7362; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13137362 - 21 Jun 2023
Viewed by 1074
Abstract
The rapid growth of the semiconductor industry has made significant strides in addressing clean energy concerns. However, there are still unresolved issues related to waste solvents. One promising approach to tackle these challenges is through pyrolysis. This study selected waste methyl ethyl ketone [...] Read more.
The rapid growth of the semiconductor industry has made significant strides in addressing clean energy concerns. However, there are still unresolved issues related to waste solvents. One promising approach to tackle these challenges is through pyrolysis. This study selected waste methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) from the industrial sector as the feedstock for pyrolysis, resulting in various residual products such as fixed carbon (char), carbon soot, and fuel gases. Experimental results demonstrated that operating temperatures between 750 and 900 °C under anaerobic conditions yielded 5% to 10 wt% of fixed carbon, along with a small amount of tar and 80% to 90% of fuel gases. The research included lab-scale pilot experiments and field-scale system studies to develop a comprehensive concept for a thermal cracking plant. SolidWorks and Aspen Plus software were applied for calculations involving heat-transfer coefficients, residence time, and the utilization of fuel gases with a boiler or burner. A field system was constructed to scale up the pyrolysis process and effectively eliminate waste solvents, incorporating an automated procedural process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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20 pages, 13128 KiB  
Article
A Waste Classification Method Based on a Multilayer Hybrid Convolution Neural Network
by Cuiping Shi, Cong Tan, Tao Wang and Liguo Wang
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(18), 8572; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11188572 - 15 Sep 2021
Cited by 39 | Viewed by 4353
Abstract
With the rapid development of deep learning technology, a variety of network models for classification have been proposed, which is beneficial to the realization of intelligent waste classification. However, there are still some problems with the existing models in waste classification such as [...] Read more.
With the rapid development of deep learning technology, a variety of network models for classification have been proposed, which is beneficial to the realization of intelligent waste classification. However, there are still some problems with the existing models in waste classification such as low classification accuracy or long running time. Aimed at solving these problems, in this paper, a waste classification method based on a multilayer hybrid convolution neural network (MLH-CNN) is proposed. The network structure of this method is similar to VggNet but simpler, with fewer parameters and a higher classification accuracy. By changing the number of network modules and channels, the performance of the proposed model is improved. Finally, this paper finds the appropriate parameters for waste image classification and chooses the optimal model as the final model. The experimental results show that, compared with some recent works, the proposed method has a simpler network structure and higher waste classification accuracy. A large number of experiments in a TrashNet dataset show that the proposed method achieves a classification accuracy of up to 92.6%, which is 4.18% and 4.6% higher than that of some state-of-the-art methods, and proves the effectiveness of the proposed method. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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14 pages, 5300 KiB  
Article
Investigation of Degradation Mechanism from Shear Deformation and the Relationship with Mechanical Properties, Lamellar Size, and Morphology of High-Density Polyethylene
by Haruka Kaneyasu, Patchiya Phanthong, Hikaru Okubo and Shigeru Yao
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(18), 8436; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11188436 - 11 Sep 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1901
Abstract
The degradation of mechanical properties is the most challenging point for the development of plastic mechanical recycling processes. Remelting and shear deformation contained in the mechanical process are a part of degradation in recycled plastics. In this study, virgin high-density polyethylene (HDPE) was [...] Read more.
The degradation of mechanical properties is the most challenging point for the development of plastic mechanical recycling processes. Remelting and shear deformation contained in the mechanical process are a part of degradation in recycled plastics. In this study, virgin high-density polyethylene (HDPE) was simulated to be recycled by remelting and treating with shear deformation being measured at different shear treatment rates (0–100/s) using a cone-plate rheometer. The obtained shear treatment product was remolded as a thin film. The evaluation was performed comparing virgin HDPE (VPE) without any processing with shear-treated HDPE with various shear treatment rates. Tensile property, X-ray crystallography, and morphological observations were performed in order to investigate the relationship between mechanical properties, thickness of lamellar size, and the morphology of shear-treated HDPE as compared to VPE. It can be found that the elongation at break of shear-treated HDPE at a high shear treatment rate (100/s) was significantly decreased from VPE. This degradation mechanism was related to the decreased degree of crystallinity, thickness of the crystalline layer, intermediate layer, and occurrence of crystalline orientation. This study expected to explain the degradation mechanism of HDPE from shear deformation which can be further improved by the processing conditions of the mechanical plastic recycling process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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17 pages, 3667 KiB  
Article
Valorization of Waste Tires by Pyrolysis and Activation Processes
by Reyna Berenice González-González, Nadia Ruiz-Gómez, Gloria Gea, Matias Vazquez-Pinon, Sergio O. Martinez-Chapa, Porfirio Caballero and Alberto Mendoza
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(14), 6342; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11146342 - 08 Jul 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2304
Abstract
The problems related to the increase in the generation of discarded tires demonstrate the need for profitable, efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable processes for their waste management. In particular, the valorization of pyrolytic solids for energy storage applications is of interest. In this study, [...] Read more.
The problems related to the increase in the generation of discarded tires demonstrate the need for profitable, efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable processes for their waste management. In particular, the valorization of pyrolytic solids for energy storage applications is of interest. In this study, four processes were performed: (1) pyrolysis; (2) chemical activation and pyrolysis; (3) pyrolysis and physical activation; and (4) chemical activation, pyrolysis, and physical activation. The process consisting of chemical activation, pyrolysis, and physical activation yielded 52% solid material with the highest electrical conductivity (2.43 Ω–1 cm–1) and a surface area of 339 m2/g with an average pore size of 3.6 nm. In addition, it was found that pore size had a greater effect on the conductivity than surface area. Liquid and gas fraction compositions were modified by the presence of chemical activation: aromatization reactions were favored, and limonene was not observed in the liquid fraction, while an increase on the CH4 concentration caused an increment in the heating value of the gas fraction. It was demonstrated that chemical and physical activation enhance the properties of the pyrolytic solid product derived from waste tires that make it suitable for the partial substitution of materials for electric energy storage applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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8 pages, 768 KiB  
Article
Migration of Sulfur and Nitrogen in the Pyrolysis Products of Waste and Contaminated Plastics
by Waldemar Ścierski
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(10), 4374; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11104374 - 12 May 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2081
Abstract
The most advantageous way of managing plastics, according to circular economy assumptions, is recycling, i.e., reusing them. There are three types of plastics recycling: mechanical, chemical and energy recycling. The products of the pyrolysis process can be used for both chemical and energy [...] Read more.
The most advantageous way of managing plastics, according to circular economy assumptions, is recycling, i.e., reusing them. There are three types of plastics recycling: mechanical, chemical and energy recycling. The products of the pyrolysis process can be used for both chemical and energy recycling. Possibilities of further use of pyrolysis products depend on their physicochemical parameters. Getting to know these parameters was the aim of the research, some of which are presented in this article. The paper presents the research position for conducting the pyrolysis process and discusses the results of research on pyrolysis products of waste plastics. The process was conducted to obtain the temperature of 425 °C in the pyrolytic chamber. Such a value was chosen on the basis of my own previous research and literature analysis. The focus was on the migration of sulfur and nitrogen, as in some processes these substances may pose a certain problem. Studies have shown high possibilities of migration of these elements in products of pyrolysis process. It has been shown that the migration of sulfur is similar in the case of homogeneous and mixed waste plastics—it immobilizes mainly in pyrolytic oil. Different results were obtained for nitrogen. For homogeneous plastics, nitrogen immobilizes mainly in char and oil, whereas for mixed plastics, nitrogen immobilizes in pyrolytic gas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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12 pages, 2886 KiB  
Article
Global Water Crisis: Concept of a New Interactive Shower Panel Based on IoT and Cloud Computing for Rational Water Consumption
by Adrian Czajkowski, Leszek Remiorz, Sebastian Pawlak, Eryk Remiorz, Jakub Szyguła, Dariusz Marek, Marcin Paszkuta, Gabriel Drabik, Grzegorz Baron, Jarosław Paduch and Oleg Antemijczuk
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(9), 4081; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11094081 - 29 Apr 2021
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 2756
Abstract
The present paper describes the problem and effects of water scarcity and the possibility of rational use of this resource in the idea of a Circular Economy (CE) and sustainable development. Rational water management requires innovation, due to the growing demand for this [...] Read more.
The present paper describes the problem and effects of water scarcity and the possibility of rational use of this resource in the idea of a Circular Economy (CE) and sustainable development. Rational water management requires innovation, due to the growing demand for this raw material. It seems that water is widely available, e.g., in Poland, there is no problem with drought. Unfortunately, Polish water resources are shrinking and modern solutions, as well as the construction of new and modernisation of old infrastructure, are some of the few solutions that can protect against a shortage of potable water. Water is also an essential resource for economic development. It is used in every sector of the economy. Limited water resources lead to an inevitable energy transformation because, in its present state, the Polish energy industry consumes huge amounts of water. Due to the above statements, the authors propose a solution in the form of an interactive shower panel that contributes to more rational water management (e.g., in households or hotels) based on the latest technological achievements. This device enables the creation of water consumption statistics based on accurate liquid flow measurements and the transfer of data to the user’s mobile device. This innovation aims to make the user aware of the amount of water used, which in turn can contribute to lower water consumption. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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12 pages, 1578 KiB  
Article
Poland’s Proposal for a Safe Solution of Waste Treatment during the COVID-19 Pandemic and Circular Economy Connection
by Krzysztof Pikoń, Nikolina Poranek, Adrian Czajkowski and Beata Łaźniewska-Piekarczyk
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(9), 3939; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11093939 - 27 Apr 2021
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 2412
Abstract
The purpose of the study presented in this text is to show the influence of COVID-19 on waste management systems and circular economy stream, and their impact on circular economy, particularly the economic impact of the pandemic on the waste management sector, impact [...] Read more.
The purpose of the study presented in this text is to show the influence of COVID-19 on waste management systems and circular economy stream, and their impact on circular economy, particularly the economic impact of the pandemic on the waste management sector, impact on circular economy objectives’ implementation as well as additional challenges like the need for hygienization of waste streams during different implementation efforts, such as changes in the municipal solid waste market and different waste processes of their disposal. Additionally, some methods—such as thermal treatment—which seemed to be not fully aligned with the circular economy approach have advantages not taken into account before. Incineration of higher volume of waste affects the waste structure and will change some of the circular economy objectives. The analysis was carried out on the example of the Polish market. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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12 pages, 2389 KiB  
Article
Feasibility Analysis of Brewers’ Spent Grain for Energy Use: Waste and Experimental Pellets
by José Ignacio Arranz, Francisco José Sepúlveda, Irene Montero, Pilar Romero and María Teresa Miranda
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(6), 2740; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11062740 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 3050
Abstract
Waste production is increasing every day as a consequence of human activities; thus, its valorization is becoming more important. For this purpose, the usage of wastes as biofuels is one of the most important aspects of sustainable strategies. This is the case of [...] Read more.
Waste production is increasing every day as a consequence of human activities; thus, its valorization is becoming more important. For this purpose, the usage of wastes as biofuels is one of the most important aspects of sustainable strategies. This is the case of the main waste generated in brewing industries: brewers’ spent grain (BSG). In this sector, microbreweries are not able to properly manage the wastes that they generate due to lack of space. Consequently, the transformation of BSG to a high-quality biofuel might be an interesting option for this kind of small industry. In this work, we carried out a physical-energy characterization of BSG, as well as pellets from this waste. The initial characterization showed slightly unfavorable results concerning N and ash, with values of 3.76% and 3.37% db, respectively. Nevertheless, the physical characterization of the pellets was very good, with acceptable bulk density (662.96 kg·m−3 wb) and low heating value (LHV; 17.65 MJ·kg−1 wb), among others. This situation is very favorable for any of the intended uses (for energy use or animal feed, among others). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Waste Treatment and Material Recycling)
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