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Research & Development

TerraTherm’s Research and Development (R&D) efforts are focused on making our proven thermal technologies ever better; advancing the efficiency, applicability, and cost-effectiveness of our solutions, and sharing our findings to advance the state of the art. Our internal R&D group works with leading research institutions to develop, test and deploy new methodologies and materials.

We have been selected as a key contractor in important research projects to prove the reliability of thermal methods for various contaminants, soils and site types such as fractured rock. Our principals are frequent contributors to the remediation community, providing papers, presentations, and insight in a wide variety of forums and publications.

Research Partnerships and Joint Projects

TerraTherm works closely with leading institutions such as the University of Texas and the University of Stuttgart to improve processes and tools. Shell Technology Ventures donated patents to UT which in turn licensed them exclusively to TerraTherm. We fund and collaborate with UT Austin faculty and students in their research. This close relationship has led to many papers, graduate theses, and numerous research publications and papers.

Another example of research collaboration was a four year SERDP-funded project featuring controlled release of DNAPL into a lower-permeability aquitard layer beneath the water table. This research was conducted at the facilities of VEGAS - the Research Facility for Subsurface Remediation at the University of Stuttgart, Germany.

Currently TerraTherm researchers are collaborating with the U.S. Navy, Queens University and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) on an ESTCP-funded demonstration project at the Naval Air Warfare Center (NAWC) site in W. Trenton, NJ, studying the feasibility of utilizing TCH for treatment of DNAPL in fractured rock. The NAWC site is the USGS’s principal research site within the U.S. focusing on DNAPL in fractured sedimentary rock, which represents two-thirds of the rock in the U.S.

R&D Programs

TerraTherm has long been a leader in the development and refinement of specialized equipment to improve the cost-effectiveness and efficiency of thermal remediation. Our proprietary, reusable heating elements have substantially cut power consumption and project cost for ISTD projects.

Patented and proprietary materials and methods

TerraTherm, its licensors, and its leadership team have over 28 U.S. patents and 88 international patents and patents pending on a wide range of technologies. They include U.S. patents on:

  • Vacuum methods for removing soil contamination
  • In situ decontamination by focused microwave/radio frequency heating
  • Method for recovering contaminants from soil utilizing electrical heating with a pattern of electrodes.
  • Thermal well designs
  • Heater blanket designs for in-situ soil heating
  • Enhanced deep soil vapor extraction processes for removing contaminants trapped in or below the water table
  • Radiant plate heaters for treatment of contaminated surfaces
  • Methods for treating DNAPL by applying heat
  • Methods and means for treating contaminants in soil piles using centralized equipment
  • In Pile Thermal Desorption

A respected and widely published leadership team

Members of TerraTherm’s leadership team are frequently invited to serve on research advisory committees and have published dozens of papers, handbooks, and presentations including:

  • Thermal Treatment of Eight CVOC Source Zones to Near Non-Detect Concentrations
  • First Thermal Remediation Using a Combination of Steam and ISTD
  • Thermally Enhanced Soil Vapor Extraction Closing DNAPL Sites - Case Studies
  • Use of Thermal Conduction Heating for the Remediation of DNAPL in Fractured Bedrock
  • Why In Situ Thermal Desorption Can Be the Most Cost-Effective Remediation Method for Many Sites
  • Dominating Processes during DNAPL Removal from the Saturated Zone Using Thermal Wells
  • Does Field Data Show Downward Mobilization of DNAPL during Thermal Treatment?
  • Heat it All the Way - Mechanisms and Results Achieved using In-Situ Thermal Remediation
  • Completion of In-situ Thermal Remediation of PAHs, PCP and Dioxins at a Former Wood Treatment Facility
  • USEPA Technology News and Trends: In-Situ Thermal Remediation Completed on Wood-Treatment Waste
  • Full-Scale Removal of DNAPL Constituents using Steam Enhanced Extraction and Electrical Resistance Heating
  • DNAPL Removal From the Saturated Zone Using Thermal Wells
  • Improved Approach for Implementing ISTD for Remediation of Chlorinated Solvents
  • In-Pile Thermal Desorption of PAHs, PCBs and Dioxins/Furans in Soil and Sediment
  • Demonstration of Three Levels of In-Situ Heating for Remediation of a Former MGP Site
  • An Examination of Using ISTD to Remediate Mercury-Contaminated Soils
  • In-Situ Delivery of Heat by Thermal Conduction and Steam Injection for Improved DNAPL Remediation
  • Application of ISTD to the Remediation of CVOCs in Saturated and Unsaturated Settings
  • In-Situ Thermal Destruction of MGP Waste in a Former Gasholder: Design and Installation
  • Performance Relative to Dioxins of ISTD Soil Remediation Technology
  • Remediating Subsurface Mercury Contamination using ISTD
  • In Situ Thermal Desorption of Refined Petroleum Hydrocarbons from Saturated Soil
  • In Situ Thermal Destruction Makes Stringent Soil and Sediment Cleanup Goals Attainable.




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