Optimized complex technology of cleaning soil contaminated by oil pollutants

Development of optimal complex technology for intensive
cleaning of soil contaminated by oil pollutants, based on
the separation of migrating fraction of oil through the use
of biosurfactant/biodegradation of non-migrating fraction.

Cleaning up soil contaminated by oil pollutants is now one of Eastern Europe's most urgent ecological problems. For example, the total amount of contaminated soil which is cleaned in LITHUANIA is about 15,000 m3/year, and the demand in the Vilnius region alone amounts to about 5000 m3/year. However, the amounts of contaminated soil in former military bases, oil product storage bases, etc., are considerably greater. These areas must also be cleaned up in the near future. The objective is to develop inexpensive and efficient technology on a large scale to clean up soil contaminated by oil pollutant. Technological decisions are based on the cleaner production/pollution prevention concept. The novelty of the proposed technology rests on separation in contaminated soil of two oil pollutant fractions: the migrating fraction which proceeds to penetrate into the environment and the non-migrating fraction which is strongly tied to the soil. The migrating fraction of pollutants can be separated from the soil using biosurfactants and the remaining, non-migrating fraction can be rendered harmless using biodegradation. The following advantages of the proposed technology can be emphasized: * the separated part of oil products can be utilized by burning in ovens; * the applied biopreparations do not contaminate the environment, the biosurfactants can be easily degraded; * using the complex biotechnology in the soil clean-up plant significantly reduces operating costs, technological filtration stages and centrifugation and biopreparation drying can be avoided; * by separating the migrating fraction of the oil pollutants from the soil, the remainining, non-migrating fraction can be degraded on the ground, the construction of which does not require extraordinary isolation of the bottom ground. The development of the above technology requires the solving of specific technological problems: optimization of biopreparation production processes in order to maximize the productivity and activity of biopreparations; optimization of the migrating fraction separation technological process in order to maximize productivity; optimization of the biodegradation process in order to maximize the degradation rate. Solving the above problems requires extensive experimental investigations and the application of experimental design, mathematical modelling, optimization and optimal control methods to reduce time and increase the efficiency of the the solutions. The detailed objectives of the project are as follows: 1) Search for the most active biodegrading strains of microoganisms and their associations, and the most effective biosurfactants; 2) Development of optimal technologies of biopreparation production; 3) Development and optimization of the complex soil cleaning technology; 4) Design and construction of a soil clean-up pilot plant. Keywords: oil pollution, soil remediation, biotechnology.
Project ID: 
2 522
Start date: 
Project Duration: 
Project costs: 
750 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Biotreatment / Compost / Bioconversion
Market Area: 

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.