Publications by authors named "Marek Kucbel"

11 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Environmental risks related to organic compounds from the combustion of paper briquettes in domestic boilers.

J Hazard Mater 2021 Jun 2;418:126291. Epub 2021 Jun 2.

Centre ENET - Energy Units for Utilization of Non-Traditional Energy Sources, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 00 Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

Environmental risks connected with the combustion of paper/cardboard briquettes are still not sufficiently known. This paper aims to bring attention to the risks related to the utilisation of paper briquettes in local boilers and to characterise these risks by means of the identification of organic compounds in deposits from exhaust flues. The identification of the chemical compounds was performed by pyrolysis gas chromatography with mass spectrometric detection. Paper/cardboard briquettes contain 119 compounds of biogenic origin derived from major biomass components and 53 additives. Additives are used both for improving the properties of paper and in printing inks. By burning the paper briquettes, the same 53 compounds from the additive group were caught in the deposits from the flue gas pathway, occurring in the range of 1-10% of the concentration of individual compounds (additives) contained in the input fuel. Compounds that are very stable during the combustion process have an enrichment factor (EF) >30, which corresponded to approximately 3% of the additive capture in deposits. The highest values were found for plasticisers (phthalates). Many of the primary organic compounds contained in the input raw material do not decompose during combustion and can have adverse effects on human health.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.126291DOI Listing
June 2021

The potential environmental risks of the utilization of composts from household food waste.

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2021 May 23;28(19):24663-24679. Epub 2020 Jul 23.

Unit of Environmental Science & Technology, School of Chemical Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, 9, Heroon Polytechniou Street, Zographou Campus, 15780, Athens, Greece.

Modern technologies (especially with the help of autonomous measurement and control systems) introduced automatic composters for the disposal of household food waste production. Environmental risks connected with the utilization of these composts can be characterized by the high electrical conductivity caused by a presence of sodium chloride in food. Electrical conductivity influences the ecotoxicity of the composts. The presence of pesticides in composted food also represents an important environmental problem. The following pesticides were found in compost samples from household food waste: 1,3,5-triazine, methyl trithion, bifenthrin, bifenox, carbophenothion, pirimicarb, dioxacarb, desmetryn. Pesticide content in composts varied from 0.3 to 16.3 μg/kg, the average value being 30.4 ± 10.1 μg/kg dry matter. The higher decomposition was found of "modern" pesticides in the composters. The removal of salts can ensure that inhibition will be < 30% while washing with the ratio of 1:3 will result in the inhibition < 5%. However, this way of processing is not effective for other organisms-Poecilia reticulata (mortality 100%) and Daphnia magna (immobilisation 100%) using this procedure as well as washing of the compost in the ratio 3:1.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-09916-5DOI Listing
May 2021

Concentration Variability of Water-Soluble Ions during the Acceptable and Exceeded Pollution in an Industrial Region.

Int J Environ Res Public Health 2020 05 15;17(10). Epub 2020 May 15.

Department of Electronics, VŠB-Technical University of Ostrava, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 00 Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic.

This study investigates the chemical composition of water-soluble inorganic ions at eight localities situated in the Moravian-Silesian Region (the Czech Republic) at the border with Poland. Water-soluble inorganic ions were monitored in the winter period of 2018 (January, 11 days and February, 5 days). The set was divided into two periods: the acceptable period (the 24-h concentration of PM < 50 µg/m) and the period with exceeded pollution (PM ˃ 50 µg/m). Air quality in the Moravian-Silesian Region and Upper Silesia is among the most polluted in Europe, especially in the winter season when the concentration of PM is repeatedly exceeded. The information on the occurrence and behaviour of water-soluble inorganic ions in the air during the smog episodes in Europe is insufficient. The concentrations of water-soluble ions (chlorides, sulphates, nitrates, ammonium ions, potassium) during the exceeded period are higher by two to three times compared with the acceptable period. The major anions for both acceptable period and exceeded pollution are nitrates. During the period of exceeded pollution, percentages of water-soluble ions in PM decrease while percentages of carbonaceous matter and insoluble particles (fly ash) increase.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17103447DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7277652PMC
May 2020

Variation of the chemical composition of street dust in a highly industrialized city in the interval of ten years.

J Environ Manage 2020 Aug 30;267:110506. Epub 2020 Apr 30.

Centre ENET - Energy Units for Utilization of Non-Traditional Energy Sources, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 00, Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

Street dust can be re-suspended into the atmosphere by wind and vehicle passage in an urban area. Street dust is affecting the environmental quality of the atmosphere and human health. A detailed study was conducted to determine the changes in concentrations of heavy metals and magnetic susceptibility by comparison of samples of street dust obtained in the years 2008 and 2018 at the same localities. An amount of dust per m of road area was highly variable for individual localities (47 g/m - 1.37 kg/m), with arithmetic mean (229.7 ± 85.97 g/m) in the year 2018. Silt particles in street dust (<0.063 mm) represented approx. 15-20%, sand particles approx. 63-70% and gravel 10-20%. Iron (5-6%) has significant concentrations in street dust. The highest concentrations are represented by the series Mn ˃ Zn ˃ Cr ˃ Cu ˃ Pb ˃ Ni. Comparison of metal concentrations in the years 2008 and 2018 showed a comparable level of iron and a lower level of lead. The significant enrichment was found for Cu, Cr and Zn expressed by enrichment factor in the range from 5 to 20. High values of magnetic susceptibility of street dust are caused by metallurgy. Metals except Cu are bound in magnetic particles and have a high correlation coefficient with magnetic susceptibility.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2020.110506DOI Listing
August 2020

Experimental analysis of waste polyurethane from household appliances and its utilization possibilities.

J Environ Manage 2019 Aug 10;243:105-115. Epub 2019 May 10.

Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture, University of Zagreb, Croatia, Ivana Lučića 5, 10000, Zagreb, Croatia. Electronic address:

Polyurethane has a good insulation characteristic, and it is widely used as an insulation and lining material for refrigerators. Nevertheless, at the end of a product's lifetime, serious problems arise related to waste management. Recently, energy recovery has been marked as a promising solution, especially, waste-to-energy applications. To find an appropriate application for such waste, a thermal analysis was performed. An experimental analysis of polyurethane (PU) waste material was performed by the method of pyrolysis gas chromatography with mass spectrometric detection (Py-GC/MS) at various pyrolytic temperatures, namely, at 500, 600 and 700 °C. Waste polyurethane foam was conducted to investigations in the form of a bulk sample and sorted grain-size samples with a goal to detect the chemical composition of the pyrolysate. The investigation revealed various groups of organic compounds such as heterocyclic compounds of nitrogen and simple and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, while notable concentrations of compounds containing chlorine were detected as well. The experimental analysis found differences in the composition of amines and other compounds and in the dependence on grain size composition. Bulk samples produced the highest concentration of amines (˃ 40%) at a temperature of 500 °C. The sample homogenization led to a significant increase in amines production. Polyurethane waste of grain size from 0.125 to 0.25 mm contained approximately 80% amines. The pyrolysis of the bulk sample at 600 °C yielded only 24% nitrogen heterocyclic compounds, while from the sorted grain-size <0.045 mm and 0.045-0.063 mm, yields were increased to 47.4 and 45.7%, respectively.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.04.112DOI Listing
August 2019

Water-soluble ions in dust particles depending on meteorological conditions in urban environment.

J Environ Manage 2019 May 25;237:322-331. Epub 2019 Feb 25.

Department of Power Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. Listopadu 15/2172, 708 33, Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

The particle size distribution of particulate matter (PM) and concentrations of water-soluble ions were observed in airborne aerosol in the City of Ostrava (the Czech Republic, Moravian-Silesian Region) during winter 2016. The Ostrava area ranks among the most polluted areas not only within the Czech Republic but also in Europe due to the high concentration of industry, especially metallurgy, in this area. The selected water-soluble ions: were studied in different grain size classes of particulate matter separated into 7 fractions (from 0.0175 to 9.93 μm) collected by an electrical low pressure impactor ELPI. Assessment of the influence of meteorological parameters and various sources of contamination (transportation, industry, and residential burning) in heavily environmentally-burdened urban areas was attempted. This study proved that (K) is related to metallurgical processes and its role as an indicator of biomass combustion is negligible. The highest concentrations of all water-soluble ions were determined in particles below 0.952 μm that is generally related to combustion processes. At increased air temperature (in the interval from 0 °C to 10 °C), concentrations of both dust particles and the sum of water-soluble ions are decreasing.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.02.086DOI Listing
May 2019

Comparison of organic compounds in char and soot from the combustion of biomass in boilers of various emission classes.

J Environ Manage 2019 Apr 15;236:769-783. Epub 2019 Feb 15.

Department of Power Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 33 Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

The combustion of biomass in boilers of emission classes 2 and 3 produces deposits in the form of char and soot inside the combustion chamber. Char and soot differ in content of elemental carbon (EC) and organic carbon (OC) as well as in the content of organic compounds. Deposits from boilers of emission class 2 contain higher amounts of OC and EC than those from boilers of emission class 3. The only exception is deposits formed by the combustion of briquettes from hardwood in boilers of emission class 3 that contained approximately by up to 60 percent higher amount of OC and by approx. 100% more EC than deposits from combustion in boilers of emission class 2. Deposits identified as char are characterized by dominant organic compounds derived from thermic degradation of cellulose, lignin, phytosterols, terpenes, their alteration products, and aromatic hydrocarbons. Deposits identified as soot have dominant PAHs, compounds containing oxygen (furans, benzofurans, phenols) and compounds containing aliphatic nitrogen (benzonitrile). Char from boilers of emission class 2 contains approx. by 80% more alkanes and cycloalkanes, by 80% more nitriles, by 50% more carboxyl acids, by 230% more anhydrosaccharides, phytosterols and by 180% more PAHs. These differences can be utilized for identification of burned fuel.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.02.038DOI Listing
April 2019

Properties of composts from household food waste produced in automatic composters.

J Environ Manage 2019 Apr 14;236:657-666. Epub 2019 Feb 14.

Department of Power Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 33, Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

The minimization of landfill deposition of waste containing biological components represents a big problem, especially in built-up residential areas. The main problem of biologically degradable municipal waste is the quantity and composition of household waste which can have an important influence on decomposition processes already in collecting vessels. An amount of household waste produced in residential areas in the Czech Republic varies from 31 to 337 g/person/day, with an average value of 250 g. Waste of plant material character is produced in the range from 22 to 291 g/person/day. Composts were prepared in the home composters from household food waste. After the end of the composting process, compost does not have the organic component sufficiently stabilized, which is documented by a high value of electrical conductivity of aqueous leachate reaching more than 4 mS/cm and low humification index. The value of the humification index pronouncedly increased after eight weeks from 0.05 to 0.85, while compost from composting of green waste using windrow system have humification index of 3.48. An aim of this work is the determination of properties of composts prepared from HFW in automatic composters and identification of differences compared with composts prepared from a mixture of biodegradable green waste.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.02.018DOI Listing
April 2019

The possibilities to identify combusted fuel based on an analysis of ash from local heating.

J Environ Manage 2018 Aug 8;219:269-276. Epub 2018 May 8.

ENET - Energy Units for Utilization of Non-Traditional Energy Sources, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 33 Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic; Department of Power Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 33 Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

Combustion of undesirable components with a high calorific value (waste: plastics, rubber, chipboard, plywood etc.) contribute to an increased emissions of PM particles. The possibility of identification of non-desirable fuels was verified by analysis of unburned carbon from bottom ash by means of pyrolysis-GC/MS. Compounds derived from thermal conversion of main wood components in the unburned carbon are formed by aldehydes, ketones, alkanes, alkenes, alkanoates, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, compounds containing benzene, compounds containing phenol and nitrogen. Unburned carbon from plywood/chipboard contains compounds with nitrogen (heterocyclic and aliphatic) in increased concentrations (33-51 ng/mg) compared with unburned carbon from pure wood (7-12 ng/mg). The concentrations increased almost two times were proved for compounds containing phenols in unburned carbon from wood composite. Total amount of determined organic compounds is also almost two times higher than that contained in unburned carbon from wood. The indication of waste wood combustion from unburned carbon is possible using the ratio: phenol/(2-methylphenol+4-methylphenol).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2018.05.001DOI Listing
August 2018

Possibilities of the utilization of char from the pyrolysis of tetrapak.

J Environ Manage 2018 Aug 7;219:231-238. Epub 2018 May 7.

Department of Power Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 33 Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

Since the cellulose used in the production of tetrapak is of very high quality, the char generated during pyrolysis should be influenced mainly by the pyrolysis temperature. This article aims to determine the chemical composition of biochar prepared at the temperatures of 400, 500, 600 and 700 °C and its environmental properties determined by the presence of organic compounds with toxicity and relatively high mobility in the environment. The analytical pyrolysis of char was used to identify the following groups of organic compounds: alkanes, cycloalkanes, alkenes, cycloalkenes, alkynes, alkadiens, ethers, alcohols, nitrogen compounds, nitrils, ketones and aldehydes, compounds containing phenols, furans, benzofurans, PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons), carboxylic acids, compounds containing benzenes and markers indicative of the presence of synthetic polymers (polyethylene layers, a part of dyes, antioxidants, stabilizers), and fragments of cellulose. Concerning the use of char as a soil conditioner, its ecotoxicity was monitored (Folsomia candida) by monitoring its addition to the artificial soil (char addition: 0.5, 1, 2.5, 5, 10, 15, 20, 50 and 100%). The lowest reproduction inhibition of Folsomia candida is caused by biochar prepared at the temperature of 400 °C and 700 °C, but it is not suitable for the agricultural application, the concentration of PAHs is three times higher than the EBC limit. Low-density polyethylene which is present in the aseptic box in concentration of 6%, can degrade biochar so that it cannot be used as a soil amendment. The results of the char analyses show that the pyrolysis temperature is a decisive factor in the applicability of biochar.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2018.05.002DOI Listing
August 2018

Temporal and seasonal variations of black carbon in a highly polluted European city: Apportionment of potential sources and the effect of meteorological conditions.

J Environ Manage 2017 Dec 18;203(Pt 3):1178-1189. Epub 2017 May 18.

Department of Energy Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava, 17. listopadu 15/2172, 708 33, Ostrava-Poruba, Czech Republic. Electronic address:

Black carbon - a primary component of particulate matter emitted from an incomplete combustion of fossil fuels, biomass, and biofuels - has been found to have a detrimental effect on human health and the environment. Since black carbon emissions data are not readily available, no measures are implemented to reduce black carbon emissions. The temporal and seasonal variations of black carbon concentrations were evaluated during 2012-2014. The data were collected in the highly polluted European city - Ostrava, Czech Republic, surrounded by major highways and large industries. Significantly higher black carbon concentrations were obtained in Ostrava, relative to other European cities and the magnitude was equivalent to the magnitude of black carbon concentrations measured in Poland and China. The data were categorized to heating and non-heating seasons based on the periodic pattern of daily and monthly average concentrations of black carbon. A higher black carbon concentration was obtained during heating season than non-heating season and was primarily associated with an increase in residential coal burning and meteorological parameters. The concentration of black carbon was found to be negatively correlated with temperature and wind speed, and positively correlated with the relative humidity. Other black carbon sources potentially included emissions from vehicle exhaust and the local steel-producing industry.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2017.05.038DOI Listing
December 2017