Following a recent change of ownership, Victoria-based business Odour Management is poised to bring something unique to the Australian asphalt market through its Ecosorb additive.
Odour Management has been a long-term odour removal specialist in the industrial and commercial market sectors using the water-based Ecosorb product. The company services a range of markets, with key areas for Ecosorb including in landfill, rendering, waste water utilities, refineries and animal yards. It also services hospitals, aged care facilities, vets, doctor surgeries and hotels under the Freshwave product name.
In May 2017, the company was purchased by H2O Odour, which Odour Management’s Managing Director Cam Waddell says has opened up a significant opportunity for the business within the Australian asphalt production sector.
“We’re now exclusively principalled by OMI Industries in the US, which specialises in this unique additive product called Ecosorb. OMI recognised our success in airborne odour management and granted us exclusive access to it. It’s also an oil-based product – before that, we primarily worked with water-based products for odour management,” Mr. Waddell says.
Ecosorb is used to treat hot asphalt vapour with heavy organic material, suppressing the emissions before they can escape. The major point of difference for the Ecosorb compared with other odour control products is that it’s a neutralising additive for asphalt binders, not a mask.
“As it’s oil-based, it is used to suppress odour by the fact it won’t alter the binder and will prevent the release of the sulphites, whereas with water-based product we try to catch the odour,” Mr. Waddell says.
“Traditionally, the landfill industry, for instance, has tried using a scented or fragrant mask, such as ‘cherry’, to offset the smell. However, in our experience, the fragrance becomes more complained about by the public than the actual waste – especially when you get a mixture of the two.
“I’m super interested in seeing what the market thinks because I don’t think there are any other products like it in the asphalt market. I know a couple of other companies have tried in Australia, but they’ve simply created a mask, and this is purely to neutralise the odour.”
The product is mixed directly into bitumen and other binders, such as polymer-modified binders, to control odorous emissions. It has been utilised in the US market in refineries, terminals, hot mix plants, transportation systems and paving operations.
It comes in three different variations: Ecosorb 606 for bitumen applications, 206 for PMB and 806 is a composite variation for use with part PMB mixes.
“It’s appropriate for basically every application with asphalt, from bitumen tankers to asphalt plant, material handling to spray sealing. The advantage to the Australian market is it will suppress odours and emissions from bitumen and not just mask it either. It will evaporate at 180 degrees, so it only goes to a certain extent, but will service a lot of applications,” Mr. Waddell says.
“In spray sealing, it can be applied either through the lay flat hose of a truck or through the injection system where it’s poured via pump in the truck.”
Mr. Waddell says the true benefits of the Ecosorb will be realised by both the general public and the staff working on the frontlines.
“A lot of bitumen plants are building up around communities and more residential areas these days. They used to be based in isolated areas, but now they are building into even more enclosed spaces,” he says, adding that the benefits will be significant for surrounding residential areas as well as for contractors working in covered areas.
Ecosorb is non-toxic, non-hazardous and biodegradable and contains no volatile organic compound materials, meaning its both safe for humans and the environment. “It’s 100 percent graded and approved by US EPA, and it’s fully green and environmentally friendly,” adds Mr. Waddell.
In describing the point of difference between Ecosorb and other products that have introduced in Australia, Mr. Waddell says it is a well-established product and widely used product internationally.
“In the US, where Ecosorb is manufactured, the product is so successful it has become a retail line in most of the high end retail shops under the product name Freshwave. It’s so successful, OMI Freshwave is a high-end sponsor to the Chicago Blackhawks in the NFL.”