NYS Governor's Awards for Pollution Prevention - Corning Incorporated
Corning Incorporated, Canton
Corning Incorporated's Canton Plant is a leading worldwide supplier of HPFS® glass, a high purity fused silica glass. This highly technical product is used in specialized equipment that etches information onto computer chips. In 1996, the Canton Plant underwent an expansion of its production facility to meet increasing customer demand. In conjunction with this expansion, a redesigned process was implemented at the Facility that eliminated over 600 tons of hydrogen chloride.
Through extensive experimentation and testing, Corning researchers redesigned the existing process, a change that has allowed Corning to make the same high quality products without generating hydrogen chloride emissions.
Methodologies and Procedures
Corning Incorporated was previously using raw materials in its glass forming process that generated acid emissions in the form of hydrogen chloride (HCl). The company spent extensive resources researching and experimenting with an alternative raw material that would produce the same quality glass without hazardous air emissions. This process is extremely proprietary and unique to the industry, and was issued a United States Patent (#5043002).
Reduced Air Emissions -
Corning has reduced hydrogen chloride emissions from the glass forming process from over 600 tons per year to zero as a result of investing millions of dollars in new technology that is better for the environment. Although the environmental impacts have never been quantified, HCL is listed as a hazardous air pollutant, and therefore, its elimination is beneficial.
In conjunction with a large facility expansion Corning installed baghouses to reduce particulate emissions. Baghouses reduce emissions by 98 percent, and result in capture of over 375 tons per year of particulate. The captured (non-hazardous) particulate is sold for use as raw material in another industry. Capturing and recycling the particulate from this process prevents a large volume of material from being landfilled and results in additional revenues for the Facility.
Elimination of a hazardous waste stream -
The redesigned process is also beneficial because it does not result in hazardous waste generation from off specification materials. Waste material generated from the old process was treated as hazardous waste. Waste products from the redesigned process are used as a raw material in another industry, thereby eliminating a potential hazardous waste stream and generating revenue for the facility.
Hazardous chemical bulk storage tank decommissioning -
Operationally, the redesigned process has allowed the facility to decommission four outside hazardous chemical bulk storage tanks totaling over 25,000 gallons of material. Decommissioning these tanks was the best management practice that minimized potential for an accidental release to the air, ground, or surface water.
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This page was last modified April 21, 2000