Removal of VOCs from Spent Aerosol Cans

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There are over three billion aerosol cans manufactured in the U.S. annually, 60% of which are consumed by households. Many of the products contained in these cans, such as paint products, light lubricants, starting fluids, polishes and waxes, and cleaners, contain substantial amounts of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) as solvents and include flammable propellants. As a result, partially empty aerosol cans are treated as a hazardous waste (HHW) collection centers; military bases; industries utilizing large quantities of aerosols; and Treatment, Storage, and Disposal Facilities (TSDFs).

Recently, there also has been question by solid waste management firms as to the potential safety hazard of processing even 'empty' aerosols. This safety question is primarily due to the highly flammable propellants still contained in many cans even when the liquid contents are discharged.

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