Dhenkanal: A Cutting-edge Ultraviolet (UV) Oxidation technology to treat Cyanide in its coke oven wastewater has been adopted in Tata Steel BSL as a step towards achieving environmental excellence.
It has established world’s first UV Oxidation Plant in the steel industry, with support from Research and Development (R&D) team of its parent company Tata Steel, at its Narendrapur plant in Dhenkanal district of Odisha with capacity to treat 80 Cubic metres of waste water per hour for the purpose.
This world class technology for commercialization has been jointly developed by R&D team of Tata Steel and Environment and Coke Oven teams of Tata Steel BSL. Tata Steel R&D team has protected the technology through patent on the key formula and novelty of the process.
The conventional method of treating cyanide in coke oven wastewater, one of the most toxic and potentially deadly pollutants, is called solid sludge separation technology which may lead towards cyanide toxicity by secondary means of toxic sludge decomposition. However, the new technology will address this issue.
Speaking about the new initiative, Subodh Pandey, Chief Operating Officer of Tata Steel BSL said, “One of the best ways to handle cyanide is complete destruction of it by oxidation. The UV Oxidation plant helps us achieve that and thus no footprint is left for further contamination of the environment. This unique initiative is one of the series of sustainable interventions the organisation is undertaking after takeover of the company. “
The steel major got the required equipment like different UV reactors, UV control panels customized before commissioning the plant in consultation with the suppliers and the R&D team of Tata Steel.
With sustainability at the core of its operational process, Tata Steel BSL has made many other technological interventions ensuring no untreated water is discharged from the plant. It has set up six Effluent Treatment Plants (ETPs) and three Gas Cleaning Plants (GCPs) for treatment of waste water from different units like two Coke Ovens, Cold Rolling Mill, Blast Furnace, Steel Melting Shop, etc.
Similarly, it has also established five Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) having total treatment capacity of 4900 cubic metres of water per day in the plant and its housing colony.
It has increased quantity of water recycled from 2 million gallon per day (MGD) in Financial Year (FY) 2019-20 to 3 MGD in FY 2020-21. Additionally, three surface run-off storage-cum-percolation ponds have been established with 45,000 cubic metres of water capacity near its residential township. Most of the treated water is being reused in plant operation, firefighting and horticulture.
The steel major has also commissioned Coke Dry Quenching plants with implementation of dry quenching process instead of wet quenching of water, which saves around 65 cubic metres of water per hour.
It has established scientifically designed High-density polyethylene (HDPE) lined rain water harvesting pond of capacity 50000 cubic metres, first of its kind in Tata Steel group for utilization of surface run-off available in the Coke Oven and raw material handling system area.
To stay ahead of the curve, the company has conducted a thorough water audit by the leading industry body of the country Confederation Indian Industry (CII) and implemented its recommendations saving around 9000 cubic metres of water per day.
To ensure the water quality always remains as per parameters set by the regulatory bodies the company has established a full-fledged environment laboratory for daily monitoring of quality of the discharged water which is well below the stipulated limit of the statutory authorities.
For all such interventions in water management, Tata Steel BSL plant in Dhenkanal has been honoured with CII National Award for Excellence in Water Management 2020 as a noteworthy water efficient unit.