An Indian firm has figured out how to process ash

The Indian company SSP has developed a waste-to wealth technology for the so-called boiler ash generated at ethanol-making distilleries that use molasses as a raw material. The new technology would help to produce potash fertilizers needed in the country’s agriculture.

“Disposal of boiler ash is a major headache for most molasses-based distilleries. More so, after the Central Pollution Control Board started insisting on its safe disposal,” said Saibal Ghosh, CEO of the SSP.

According to his estimates, an enterprise producing 100 kilolitres of ethanol per day actually generates almost 60 tons of boiler ash. The new technology can get 34% potash, which is 97% pure.
Then, the residue left behind after the first stage of boiler ash processing, can be further treated to “extract” an additional 16% of potash.

Currently, India produces 4.5 billion litres of ethanol, thus generating almost 3 million tons of boiler ash. By utilizing it, the country can satisfy a significant part of its needs for potash fertilizers (about 4 million tons of them were imported in 2019).

Source: The Hindu Business Line

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