Aerosol Can Voiding Device

Period of Performance: 03/02/2001 - 09/02/2001


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Apogee Engineering, Inc.
6059 Mission Drive
West Bloomfield, MI 48324
Principal Investigator


Apogee Engineering Inc. proposes to R&D a system for separating partially empty aerosol cans into: empty cans, plastic parts, residual liquid and volatile components.The approved disposal method is collection in steel drums, where one drum full of 150cans is a drum of Excess Hazardous Waste for disposal onshore at costs averaging $2.83/can. Apogee proposes the separated components can be disposed of in an economical and environmentally safe manner for about $0.034/can. The complete systemwill consist of: improved can voiding device,volatile components management system, volatile component adsorption system and valve removal device for separating the plastic parts from metal parts. Principal investigator: Gary L. Gardner Sr.,P.E., chemical engineer with 40 years experience in diverse technologies.The R&D will establish, in partnership with the Navy, a design basis for the complete system. Existing systems allow excessive volatile components to escape into the immediate atmosphere of the systems and fail to separate the plastic components. A superior system with optional features will be developed that meets the needs of the Navy, other governmental agencies and the private sector. Optional designs allow marketing of less expensive models for entities not requiring the stringent Navy standards.Benefits to the Navy, as a result of this research and development,will be the designof a safer and easier to use aerosol can voiding/disposal system for use onboard ships. The system will: (1) puncture partially empty aerosol cans safely with zero exposure of the contents to the operator; (2) adsorb the hazardous components from the punctured aerosol cans, reducing emissions to essentially zero; (3) collect the liquid contents in a liquid containment drum for disposal as ordinary liquid waste; (4) separate the plastic containing valve assembly from the empty can so that the empty can and plastic components can be disposed of properly. The commercial applications are numerous and, most importantly, beneficial to the environment: minimizing co-mingled waste in landfills; minimizing release of volatile gasses into the atmosphere; minimizing waste by the cruise ship industry, the health care industry, the hotel/lodging industry and other similar industries.