Characterization and Recycling of Textile Sludge Through Energy Efficient Brick Production, the Case of Hawassa Industrial Park

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Addis Ababa University


Textile industry sludge from zero liquid discharge treatment plant of industrial parks in Ethiopia faces environmental problem with no safe disposal options. One potential opportunity for the disposal of sludge is by incorporating it in clay bricks, such application can be practiced in a large scale in the country's brick-manufacturing industry. Clay bricks were prepared with different proportions of sludge (10, 20, 30 and 40% by weight) in laboratory conditions and its properties such as strength, water absorption, and weight loss on ignition were investigated. Results indicated that increasing the sludge content in bricks resulted in a decrease in compressive strength. However, the compressive strength was increased with the increase of firing temperature. The compressive strength of textile sludge bricks was reduced significantly from 30.42 to 2MPa when textile sludge content increased from 0% to 40% fired at 1200 oC. Moreover, it was estimated that an energy saving of 38% was achieved with 10% textile sludge incorporated bricks during firing; this is due to the heating value of the textile sludge. Toxic characteristics leaching procedure test results indicated that the leaching behavior of targeted heavy metals has been found to be insignificant (P<0.01). The recommended proportion of sludge in brick making can be 10% (by dry weight) and fired between 900 °C and 1200 °C for producing good quality bricks. This study indicated that textile sludge can be sustainably stabilized and recycled in clay bricks and large-scale application of this technique can be advised for Ethiopia where both the industrial parks and brick industries benefits mutually.



Textile Sludge, Fired Clay Bricks, Stabilization,, Energy Efficient, Zero liquid discharge