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Applying thermal desorption using microwaves in the treatment of soils contaminated with petroleum products

Samothraki Evangelia

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Year 2017
Type of Item Diploma Work
Bibliographic Citation Evangelia Samothraki, "Applying thermal desorption using microwaves in the treatment of soils contaminated with petroleum products", Diploma Work, School of Environmental Engineering, Technical University of Crete, Chania, Greece, 2017
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The extended use of petroleum and its products, the exposure of different pollutants in the ground, such as the Total Petroleum Hydrocarbons (TPH) and the Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs), become a common phenomenon in modern times. The main sources of Petroleum Hydrocarbons are any leaks and accidents, the transference or the retention of fuels and other petroleum products. Therefore, the developments in several methods of remediation of pollutant soils by petroleum have been accomplished.This diploma thesis was developed in the context of an effort to rehabilitate oil-contaminated soil, which originated from an Industrial area. At the initial stage, the studied sample was characterized as, the moisture content, the chemical elements, the mineralogical phases and the thermogravimetric analysis. Subsequently, the thermal desorption method was applied using a modified household microwave at an adjustable power of 450 and 800 W, and selected desorption times in order to remove the contained water and organic pollutants. Finally, the determination of total petroleum hydrocarbon released as well as the qualitative approach of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons by using appropriate methods.Microwave processing was judged effective to treat contaminated samples at short desorption times. Specifically, the method demonstrated a TPH removal efficiency of up to 99 %. Processing time was the most important functional parameter for satisfactory removal of petroleum pollutants. On the contrary, variations in both the applied power and the quantity of the contaminated sample tested did not bring about significant variations in the efficiency of the process. Heavy molecular weight (HMW) PAHs showed high rates of removal from the start of the application. From an environmental point of view, the ideal power output was 450 W.

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