Filter cake is a by-product of filtration processes and is often rich in nutrients that can be recycled in a wide range of products and processes. This diverts valuable resources from landfill, reduces associated waste management costs and helps prevent environmental contamination.
Filter cake is the compacted solid or semisolid material remaining on a filter after pressure filtration. Filtration is a process used in a variety of industries so the content of filter cake varies greatly but often it is nutrient rich and beneficial to recycle. If the filter cake content is non-toxic then recycling filter cake can recover resources that for example can be reintroduced into production process, composted or where possible or sold for use as soil enrichment in the agricultural industry. Recycling filter cake also reduces the amount of waste going to landfill and helps prevent environmental contamination.
Filter cake recycling can be done internally and on site. However there are commercial operators who offer filter cake treatment and recycling services, in particular for industrial filter cake containing heavy metals such as mercury.
The process for recycling filter cake is likely to differ between industry and filter cake content. However as a general process the filter cake must be removed from the filter, washed to eliminate any contaminates and then dried in ovens. From here the filter cake will undergo a variety of different processes depending on its final use.
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