The promise of
is bringing greener chemical processes to the world through the creation of cleaner pharmaceuticals, food, nutraceuticals, solvents, coatings and energy solutions.
The company opened the doors of its Fox Chapel operation last week to showcase the ways that greener chemical processes and energy solutions work with Thar’s patented, high-pressure, “super critical fluid” applications.
In a nutshell, supercritical fluid technology replaces tradition solvent-based chemical processing techniques by harnessing the power of carbon dioxide through Thar’s pressurized system of piping loops and tanks.
The result is a wide range of products and processes that have a smaller carbon footprint and are less expensive than current processes that use toxic solvents, explained Lalit Chordia, CEO.
Thar’s headquarters on Gamma Drive, formerly the American Roller Bearing Co., is a model for energy efficiency using Thar’s own geothermal heating and cooling system. Thar expects to have its geothermal system on the market in 2013, a system that is already being used by the Audubon Society of Western Pa.
In addition, the company is developing a water treatment system using the supercritical fluid process to clean fracking water on shale drilling sites. The process separates and destroys the biological compounds such as bacteria and organic compounds by heating the water to high temperatures, says Chordia, cleaning the water and separating out the inorganic elements as solids that can be disposed of in a landfill.
This is only the beginning of what’s to come, Chordia explained. The supercriticial fluid process will change and improve the way many things are processed through Thar’s three company divisions: Process, Energy and Pharmaceuticals.
The overall goal is to develop more sustainable energy systems and healthier drugs and foods, such as soybeans and soy products, decaffeinated coffee, hops extracts for beer and spice extracts.
The biggest hurdle in making manufacturing processes greener is the country prefers large volume processing that nets big profits, says Chorida. Thar’s approach is to promote niche marketing production as more profitable than traditional commodity approaches, which promotes greater prosperity and keeps jobs at home.
“As chemists we need to do what we can to reduce to reduce toxic chemicals in our environment,” said Nancy Jackson of the American Chemical Society who was on hand for tour as part of a day long tribute at Chatham Univerity to Rachel Carson and the official designation of Silent Spring
as a National Historic Chemical Landmark. “This is an example of what chemists can achieve working to develop chemicals that use less toxic ingredients.”
Writer: Deb Smit
Source: Lalit Chordia, Thar Technologies