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In recent years, odours from production facilities have become an increasingly important environmental issue that concerns the personal comfort and wellbeing of people working in and living near foundries. The aim of the Odorless Casting project is to address the problems related to the air pollution control of odorous and hazardous emissions from foundry processes and to provide feasible abatement techniques for different type of foundries.


The foundry industry has a negative image characterised by the image of factories with polluting chimneystacks. In spite of the successful minimization of the visible effects of particle emissions, foundries still emit plenty of bad smelling odours and noxious gaseous compounds. There are several odorous emission sources in foundries. Typically, emissions origin from the unit processes of melting, core making, flask cooling, die casting, shake out, and sand reclamation.

According to IfG, 15-20 % of all foundry sites in central Europe have a severe odorous discharge problem. These countries are densely populated with the result that industries are usually located in areas of high habitation. The estimate is that between 500 and 1000 European foundry sites are heavily burdened by odour reduction problems. Although this problem has been noticed nationally and regionally across Europe, odour emission is not a regulatory issue for the European Commission at present.


The intention of the project is to develop and demonstrate technically, environmentally and economically feasible odour and hazardous emission abatement systems for the air pollution control purposes of the foundry industry, equipment manufacturers, the authorities, and ambient air quality improvements in general. The basic idea is to compare different types of abatement techniques on similar applications and to find out their relative efficiencies in order to compare them by some efficiency indices and to give advice about their usefulness.

The aim of the project is to complete the following

    • To carry out odour balance in typical aluminium, steel and iron foundries.

    • To minimize hazardous and odorous emissions from different foundry processes by approximately 80-90% at pilot foundries by applying the best feasible exhaust air cleaning systems.

    • To demonstrate technically and economically feasible emission abatement techniques for wide-scale implementation.


In the project, the main actions are to define odours and the odour emission balance in iron, steel and aluminium foundries, and to demonstrate six innovative and highly developed cleaning techniques to abate large amounts of odour emissions.

1) Odour emissions in different foundry processes will be studied and measured.

The odour balance in iron, steel and aluminium foundries will be defined by using the olfactometric analyses. Measurements will be carried out in seven pilot foundries in 2012/2013 in Europe.

2) Feasibility studies of six highly developed and innovative odour emission abatement techniques such as oxidation (catalytic, thermal and concentration + oxidation), biofiltration, adsorption, and ignition systems will be carried out in six foundries in Finland, Germany, Sweden and Austria.

Odorless casting project pilot sites.

Expected results

The project will provide information on odour emissions in ferrous and non-ferrous foundry processes.

As a result, the odour balances will be determined in seven aluminium, steel and iron foundries across Europe.

The project will also produce information on the performance and cleaning efficiency of the tested abatement techniques in different odour emitting foundry processes.

Also a design and instruction guide on how to dimension and apply cleaning systems for odorous and hazardous emissions in different foundry processes will be provided. The total annual cost and energy consumption calculations for full-scale technologies will be also estimated.

Special attention will be paid to the reliable operation of the system and the energy efficiency of the abatement systems. The results can be used in the design and implementation of odour abatement techniques by the foundry industry, public bodies, and equipment manufacturers.

After this project, foundries will have information on how to choose and design an outlet air purification system for VOC, odour, and hazardous emissions. They will also know what kind of cleaning system will abate these emissions.