Program ID: Innovation Anthology #354
Program Date: 11/18/2010
Program Category: Chemistry, Energy, Engineering, Environment, Natural Resources, Oil Sands, Water
Giant Coke Filter Cleans Oil Sands Process Water
When bitumen is processed, some of the by-products leftover include napthenic acids in the water and coke, which is essentially carbon or charcoal.
At grad school, Warren Zubot got the idea to use coke to filter napthenic acids from the leftover process water. And now he is developing the technology for Syncrude Canada Ltd.
WARREN ZUBOT: The whole treatment concept is exactly the same as a Brita water filter a person would have at home in their refrigerator. The next level of research will be to test it at a much larger scale than in the laboratory. So we will be doing a pilot program with this where we will be building dykes and putting coke into a storage area with drains so the water will flow through the coke and come out the bottom. And some of the things that we are going to be looking at is how big the dykes need to be to contain the coke as well as how many weeping tile type pipes have to be placed in the bottom with the coke bed to make sure the water flows out and can be drained and collected in an efficient manner. The quality is very good. Most of the compounds that are in the water are removed. And our objective is to produce a water quality that will support freshwater aquatic life.
That was environmental engineer Warren Zubot.
Thanks today to Syncrude Canada Ltd
FOR INNOVATION ANTHOLOGY
I’M CHERYL CROUCHER