At Condorchem, innovation is one of the best instruments to help us achieve our strategic challenges. This is why an R&D Management System was set up in accordance with the UNE 166002: 2014 standard, to plan, coordinate and structure R&D activities in the most efficient way possible.
Via the R&D Committee, the management at Condorchem are fully involved in the promotion of the culture of innovation throughout the organization, as well as in aligning the proposals for the development of R&D projects with the general strategy of the company.
The basic functions of the R&D Committee are to propose, monitor, evaluate and make strategic decisions regarding the R&D projects to be implemented.
The Business vision and R&D vision are established as follows:
We want to be a reference engineering company at the international level; promoting innovation cultures, policies and strategies both internally and externally to create added value to society, in a sustainable way over time.
The commitment to innovation in our processes, technologies and services means we are recognized as an organization that provides added value through solutions that respect the environment and promote the recovery of resources from waste. We are willing to establish strategic collaborations with technology partners to share knowledge and experiences that lead us to meet the objectives of sustainable development.
CONDORCHEM ENVITECH, SL uses Innovation to offer society new solutions for the environmental challenges of effluent and atmospheric emissions management through processes leading to the sustainable growth of industry.
Thus, innovation at CONDORCHEM is sustained along the lines described below:
The Integrated Management Policy of CONDORCHEM ENVITECH, SL pursues the strategic objectives of a continuous increase in the competitiveness of the company, the maximum satisfaction of customer needs, protection of the environment, including the prevention of pollution that could be produced by our business, the prevention of damage and illness to our employees and collaborators, the promotion of the culture of innovation and continuous compliance with applicable legal and regulatory requirements and those voluntarily subscribed to.
To this end, the following guidelines are established:
The results from the Chemirec project pilot plant are being used to design, build and operate a demonstration plant for the recovery of minerals and recoverable elements from exhausted pickling baths.
The technology behind the patent ES 2 239 900 A1 is being tried on an industrial scale under continuous operation. It is currently in the design phase. In the coming months, the demonstration plant will be built and put into service in a local galvanizing company.
The demonstration plant will provide us with information about the scalability of the technology and how to optimize a continuous process. In the final stages, customers may visit the facilities to see it in operation and receive an estimate regarding acquisition.
Eco-Techno, srl is our European partner in this project, which has benefited from LIFE16 European financing.
A very common problem that occurs in solid urban waste landfills is leachates: liquid effluents that pollute and pose a serious environmental problem. Leachates come from the decomposition of organic matter in landfills and the rain percolating through them. This liquid effluent cannot be disposed of without prior treatment.
Leachates can contaminate soil and surface and underground water if not adequately managed or controlled. Leachate management is not always simple, with the most suitable option depending on several conditions, such as the geographical location of the landfill, flow or concentration.
The TrueZLD project is an international collaboration project with the Canadian company Saltworks Technologies Inc which has the Eureka seal of approval and state financing from the CDTI. At Condorchem Envitech SL, we are developing a leachate treatment system using an environmentally sustainable zero discharge system capable of being upgraded to production scale.
Our leachate solution will provide a high quality water stream and stabilized solid state pollutant load that can be deposited in the landfill itself. The solid waste landfill management model will progress from external management to self-management.
Over the last few months, we have been conducting leachate characterization studies from different landfills and have conducted the first laboratory tests to stabilize and solidify the dissolved contaminants.
The Chemirec project is developing a solution for the recovery of minerals and recoverable elements from exhausted pickling baths.
The pickling process chemically removes the surface iron oxide layer by the action of hydrochloric acid before the metal undergoes a corrosion protection process, such as galvanization.
The increasing concentration of iron and other metals, such as zinc, in the bath as it is used decreases the ability of the acid to react with the iron oxide. The bath is said to be exhausted when it substantially loses this reactive capacity.
The bath is then disposed of by an authorized waste manager which neutralizes it with alkalis, precipitating the metal hydroxides, mainly iron and, in galvanizing machines, zinc. In the management of exhausted baths, problems occur with discharge, sludge that has to be rendered inert and the recovery of raw materials and by-products.
At Condorchem Envitech, SL, with the funding of the CDTI, we are developing a pilot plant to recover over 95% of the hydrochloric acid from exhausted pickling baths for reuse in the same process and the recovery of iron as ferrous sulphate and zinc as zinc chloride.
The pilot plant projected and in operation is providing results that demonstrate the validity of the proposed technology. As a result, we have just started the project to build a demonstration-scale industrial plant capable of continuous operation.
The project has had the recognition of patent rights (ES 2 239 900 A1) since 2005.
Condorchem Envitech, SL has first-hand knowledge of the thermal energy supply problems that certain sectors suffer globally due to their geographic location or the cost of acquiring fossil fuels. The only energy available in these cases is electric power whose acquisition cost is low, depending on the region.
In collaboration with the Greentech research group of Catalonia Polytechnic University and financing from the Catalonia Generalitat, a Research and Development project is being carried out to study the hydrodynamic generation of heat and its application in thermal separation processes.
The project will contribute to the generation of scientific knowledge by studying the interrelation of hydrodynamics and heat generation. The results will be presented in the form of a doctoral thesis.
The use of hydrodynamics as a heat source has several challenges that are being addressed, such as the strength of materials due to accelerated erosion. However, the use of this technology will eliminate heat exchange secondary circuits without the risk of fouling or the formation of incrustations.
A major challenge in the design of water treatment processes by thermal separation is adjusting the working concentration ratio. The concentration ratio affects the concentration of minerals in the water remaining inside the plants; forming crystals and scale beyond the saturation point.
The object of the Scalsim project is to predict the maximum concentration ratio above which the saturation of some of the minerals contained in the waters occurs and determining which salts precipitate.
Scalsim will be the new internal tool to study the optimal working concentration ratio according to the quality of the input waters, output and the requirements of our customers. Improving the adjustment of the concentration ratio increases production and reduces downtime due to cleaning maintenance.
Condorchem Envitech was recognized as an innovative SME by the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness Innovation and Competitiveness General Directorate.
We took part in the challenge of the company Estrella de Levante, a brewery which is part of Grupo Damm located in Murcia, inside the contest organized by the Asociación Nacional del Centros Europeos de Empresas e Innovación. Since it is an open innovation contest, they allow consolidated companies to interact with the entepreneurial landscape and move forward thier technical challenges.
The challenge focused in proposing a solution to minimize their saline eflluents, for which we came out as winners.