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Characteristics of Heavy Metals Emitted from a Heavy Oil-Fueled Power Plant in Northern Taiwan

Category: Articles

Volume: 10 | Issue: 2 | Pages: 111-118
DOI: 10.4209/aaqr.2009.09.0056
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Ya-Fen Wang 1, How-Ran Chao2, Lin-Chi Wang3, Guo-Ping Chang-Chien3, Tsui-Chun Tsou4

  • 1 Department of Bioenvironmental Engineering and R&D Center of Membrane Technology, Chung Yuan Christian University, Chung-Li, 320, Taiwan
  • 2 Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, National Pingtung University of Science and Technology, Pingtung 912, Taiwan
  • 3 Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, Cheng-Shiu University, 833, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  • 4 Division of Environmental Health and Occupational Medicine, National Health Research Institutes, Zhunan, Miaoli 350, Taiwan


The characteristics and distribution of metal contents emitted from a power plant fueled by heavy oil and its impact to the ambient atmosphere near the power plant was investigated. The current investigation measured toxic (As, Cd, Cr, Hg, Ni and Pb), anthropogenic (Ba, Cu, Mn, Sb, Se, Sr, Ti, V and Zn) and crust (Al, Ca, Fe, K and Mg) elements from a 2,000 MW heavy oil-fired power plant. Results showed the emission concentration from the power plant contributed to 17,976 kg/yr annual emission of anthropogenic elements, which was significantly higher than those from some electrical arc furnaces and coke ovens in Taiwan. For toxic metals, As, Cd or Ni concentration do not exceed target values established by the European Council (2004/107/EC) for As (6 ng/m3), Cd (5 ng/m3) and Ni (20 ng/m3). This study also applies nonparametric statistical analyses for evaluating the relationship between metal concentrations and operational parameters (including emitted CO2, O2, flue gas emission temperature, flue gas velocity, moisture, heavy oil consumption rate, boiler steam temperature, boiler operational pressure, and electricity). Findings show negative correlations between most toxic metals (As, Cd, Cr and Hg) and operational parameters, though some pairs were not statistically significant. The current study provides only preliminary statistical results between metal concentrations and operational parameters due to small sample sizes. Further investigation requires larger sample sizes.


Heavy oil power plant metal Emission factor Ambient atmosphere Operational parameters

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