Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Environmental Analysis
Scientific Community
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article

Odour-eating the Planet’s Smells

Published: Saturday, April 05, 2014
Last Updated: Saturday, April 05, 2014
Bookmark and Share
IChemE will be hosting a webinar on 10 April 2014, called ‘The Life and Times of Odours’.

Greater controls and technological advances in the way outdoor odours are measured, detected and abated are gradually reducing the impact of industrial and man-made smells on communities and the environment.

Odour emissions have been regulated in some countries, including the UK, since the middle of the nineteenth century. However, odour emissions and perception is subjective and can vary from culture to culture. In addition, legislation and regulation of outdoor odours is complex and investigation equally challenging.

The traditional method of odour emission detection has been the simple ‘sniff’ method or FIDOL (frequency, intensity, duration, offensiveness and location). However, measurement technology has improved greatly in recent years. Although still using real people, sensory panels are now able to provide accurate and repeatable data to set acceptable legal compliance thresholds.

At the forefront of managing odours are chemical engineers who use a range of abatement technologies to reduce emissions, including: biofiltration; chemical scrubbing; activated carbon filters; and reagents and masking.

Peter Badham, research and development manager at Air Spectrum Environmental, said: “The management of odour has never been easy for one simple reason - people have different abilities and tolerance thresholds to smells.

“Variations also occur continent to continent. Odours from steroids like androstenone - which are found in both male and female sweat and urine - are less likely to be detected in the UK and Europe than in the US.”

Badham continued: “However, outdoor odour management has become more sophisticated and chemical engineers now have a range of solutions to protect communities and the environment from unacceptable levels of emissions.

“Improvements in data processing mean that computer models are able to accurately predict the odour footprint on communities using robust meteorological data. Global and European air quality standards are also being more widely adopted and improved led by organizations including the European Committee for Standardization. Potential new technologies using ozone and ultra-violet light also offer further opportunities to improve the world we live in.

“Although it is virtually impossible to eradicate all industrial-scale smells, odours like hydrogen sulphide - often associated with rotten eggs - are likely to become less common in future years.”

The Institution of Chemical Engineers’ (IChemE) Environment Special Interest Group will be hosting a webinar on 10 April 2014, called ‘The Life and Times of Odours’, presented by Peter Badham.

The role of chemical engineers in the health, water, food and energy sectors is explored in IChemE’s latest technical strategy, Chemical Engineering Matters.

Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,700+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 3,800+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters

Sign In

Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Biodiesel Production Goes Eco-friendly
New water-free process for the production of biodiesel from waste vegetable oils.
Friday, March 21, 2014
Unlocking the Energy Potential of the World’s Waste
Latest technologies for converting energy from waste are being discussed at the 12th European Gasification Conference in The Netherlands.
Thursday, January 30, 2014
Liquid That Dissolves Pollution
Ionic liquids are able to dissolve almost anything and possess special properties which mean they always remain liquid and never evaporate.
Thursday, November 14, 2013
Whisky-fed Salmon to Boost Sustainability
New partnership will convert waste from whisky production into feed for salmon and fish farming.
Friday, October 04, 2013
Natural Waste Solution for Reclaiming Contaminated Land
A charcoal made from biomass could hold the key to re-claiming thousands of square kilometres of polluted ‘brownfield’ land across the world.
Monday, July 15, 2013
Smog Eating Street Reduces Air Pollution
Titanium oxide (TiO2) used to remove chemical pollutants from the air.
Monday, July 08, 2013
Sea Urchin Link to Climate Change Control
Sea urchin may hold the key to cost effective carbon capture and storage in the future.
Monday, June 24, 2013
Tackling the Orange Waste Mountain
Orange waste used in the manufacture of paper; the absorption of pollutants; as a fertilizer; and a potential new fuel source, including bio-fuels and charcoal.
Monday, May 27, 2013
Hungary Environment Minister Recognized By Chemical Engineers
Zoltán Illés will be made an Honorary Fellow of IChemE at a ceremony in London, UK this September.
Tuesday, August 02, 2011
Scientific News
First Results Describing Sick Sea Star Immune Response
Though millions of sea stars along the West Coast have perished in the past several years from an apparent wasting disease, scientists still don’t know why.
Microbe Sleuth
Tanja Bosak examines how life and the Earth evolved in tandem during their early history together.
The Age of Humans Controlling Microbes
Engineered bacteria could soon be used to detect environmental toxins, treat diseases, and sustainably produce chemicals and fuels.
Messing With The Monsoon
Manmade aerosols can alter rainfall in the world’s most populous region.
Plastic for Dinner
Roughly a quarter of the fish sampled from fish markets in California and Indonesia contained man-made debris according to a study from the University of California, Davis, and Hasanuddin University in Indonesia.
Seeking “Gold Standard” Wastewater Treatments
Metagenomic analyses lend insights into how microbes break down wastewater contaminants.
Preventing Drinking Water Contamination by Pharmaceuticals
In recent years, researchers have realized that many products, including pharmaceuticals, have ended up where they’re not supposed to be — in our drinking water.
Low-level Arsenic Exposure Before Birth Associated with Early Puberty in Female Mice
Study examine whether low-dose arsenic exposure could have similar health outcomes in humans.
Intensity of Desert Storms May Affect Ocean Phytoplankton
MIT study finds phytoplankton are extremely sensitive to changing levels of desert dust.
Determination of Phosphate in Soil Extracts in the Field: A Green Chemistry Enzymatic Method
New method for phosphate determination which can be carried out in the field to obtain results on the spot.
Scroll Up
Scroll Down

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,700+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,800+ scientific videos