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Concept Note - 3 - Bio-medical Waste


The environment protection business is led by developed countries and we have great dependence by way of aid and technological support. However still the innovations in this sector are concurrent and recent phenomenon. Like in software , we have great potential for not only developing the technology indigenously, but also market it worldwide.

The two concept papers enclosed here are for starters.
A plan of action is urgent necessity, as they are bound to be developed further for sure, if we don't do it.
With this initiative in right perspective and commitment, we can guide the industry, and contribute significantly to the movement.
Being a technology and concept promoter, most of the time, we will enjoy doing this with an appropriate arrangement.

Biomedical waste treatment - a technologist's perspective
The Concept Paper- 1.

1.The biomedical waste management has come of age over last two decades of notifications, amendments, guidelines and implementation- initiatives of regulatory bodies and enterprises.

2.Now the healthcare establishments follow the principals of segregation. The treatment facilities are in place in major hospitals and common BMW treatment facilities are established in major townships.

3.But the norms of treatment are not followed, due to apparent costs of operations being very high. The periodic inspection by pollution control bodies only legalizes these unethical operations dubiously.

4.Almost all incinerators have electrical panels for operations and monitoring operating parameters. They then have to be put on registers and reports are made. To follow the norms of temperatures of oxidation viz.850deg.cent. in primary chamber and 1000 deg. cent. in secondary chambers costs money by way of diesel consumption. Nobody wants to incur that cost in absence of "on the spot" monitoring and therefore the waste is burned at minimum temperatures and at minimal cost of fuel. This defeats the purpose of waste treatment.

5.Only few operators have autoclaves with tamper-proof PLCs and printers. Running an autoclave for prescribed time cycles and required temperature and pressure costs money in terms of electricity. Therefore autoclaves are run for shorter time cycles to finish the work fast and save electricity. This leaves the waste as hazardous as it could be.

6. The shredding is rarely done properly and is done after doing the segregation at this stage. This is for the recovery of best value of the waste plastic.

7. The money generating factor being the sale of plastics (which was the old practice), the facility operators focuses on it and do not bother about following any norms or guidelines of sterlization or treatment.

To overcome the problem, it is proposed to develop a tamperproof electronic online system for complete operations and monitoring of biomedical waste management facilities. This will ensure proper treatment and monitoring by pollution control boards.

Proposed Features:

1. System software with all the operational and monitoring parameters to be linked with every facility operator through internet with database management and highlighting the significant points. This is to be installed at MEOF, CPCB, and PCB head quarters.

2. Develop a compatible plc/computer based systems for tamperproof operational and monitoring parameters, which is to be procured by facility operators under their directive.

3. Integrate the incinerator, sterilizer, processor, shredder and other facility equipment with this system.

4. Link automatic and on line parameters feeding to central systems right from waste collection to treatment and disposal.

5. Automatic generation of reports at every level and establish controls.

At ESRF, we are committed to the cause of health and environment and would like to execute this project for you.

Biomedical waste treatment - a technologist's perspective
The Concept Paper - 2.

1.Waste management is an emerging infrastructure industry. Because of the aid by international environmental agencies they only determine the expenditures and technology. This is for their advantage at our cost, which is irrationally high.

2.There is a campaign worldwide against global warming and incineration is not a favored waste treatment option. Non burn technologies are preferred world over and being developed.

3. Autoclaves as prescribed in law leaves sterilization standard much to be desired – only 4 log 10 and homogeneous penetration of steam in whole waste. While 6 to 8 log 10 is achievable in alternative systems like hydroclave.

4. The waste in Hydroclave and other systems like sanitec microwave does not have a commercial value and have to go to land fill—which is again not an acceptable option.

5. To make waste reusable it has to be a system of continuous process for large volumes, sterilization 6 to 8 log 10, and reusable waste after treatment.

Proposed features

a. The objective is to sterilize to the Biomedical Waste to the Safe & acceptable norms to render it harmless. Permissible limit- 4 log 10 in Autoclaves, while Achievable limit -8 log 10 in advance systems.

b. Residue Should be harmless but reusable, If it is not non reusable, the Basic objectives are defeated. i.e. it can be segregated to make commercially usable

c. Hazardous nature of waste needs minimum human handling. A continuous process will be better than a batch process sterilization system.

d. Continuous sterilization process by Steam has to be by mixing the waste to achieve best sterilization standards. This makes segregation and Recycling process hazardous then microwave based sterilization.

e. In continuous microwave sterilization process, we don’t have to mix the waste to achieve the requisite sterilization standards. This will make it safe and recyclable waste.

F. It should be a generation ahead then available and should meet futuristic norms.

Therefore we should develop a microwave based continuous sterilization system for Biomedical waste treatment and other peripheral equipment for waste management.




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