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( Article Type: Explanation )

A 'scrubber' is the common term used to describe a piece of equipment that is designed to remove or 'scrub' toxic gases and other materials from the gases emerging from a chimney. The term is mainly used to describe the use of a liquid into which toxic gases are absorbed or dissolved to prevent them from being dispersed into the air. Sulphur dioxide is often removed from stack emissions using wet scrubbing methods. Dry scrubbing involves the use of materials onto which particles 'stick' and are thereby also prevented from going into the atmosphere. Other methods of 'scrubbing' these emissions of particles include the use of bag filters (the emissions are passed through filters that trap particles) and electrostatic precipitators. Electrostatic precipitators electrically 'charge' the particles so that they are attracted to electrodes and thus prevented from leaving the chimney (or 'stack', to use the technical term). Scrubbing is an important method of reducing air pollution from industrial chimneystacks.

Associated Organisations:

SI Analytics , Wales: Environmental Partnerships