A thermal catalytic oxidizer is a thermal oxidation system–such as a regenerative thermal oxidizer or a recuperative thermal oxidizer–where a catalyst is added to the process to transform the exhaust for Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) and Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs) into CO2, water and excess heat which are safely released into the atmosphere.
Basically, this catalyst allows the VOCs and HAPs to be processed at a lower temperature which saves the customer a significant amount of money because they don’t have to buy the extra fuel and time necessary to heat the system to the much higher temperature to destroy them.
This can be a tricky process though. Catalysts must be carefully selected to work with specific compounds and the amounts of those compounds present in the process stream. If the process stream changes somehow, either by adding some other compound to the process stream, or adding more or less of the selected compounds to be treated into the process stream, the catalyst might not be as effective and can even fail to transform the contaminants at all.