Bio technology

sulfide oxidizing bacteria


The first step of the desulfurization action is a conventional contactor that absorbs the Hydrogen Sulfide as Sulfide.

But the key to the THIOPAQ O&G Process is the biological aspect, i.e. the conversion of sulphide to elemental sulphur through the activity of bacteria belonging to the group of naturally occurring sulphide oxidising organisms such as Thioalkalivibrio. These are autotrophic organisms, which means that CO2 is required as their sole carbon source. The organisms are naturally occurring and are not genetically manipulated or modified.

The most exiting aspect however is that the biological conversion is simpler, more effective and more efficient than conventional chemical systems!

The bacteria population is harmless to the environment, fast-growing and highly resistant to varying process conditions. The energy needed for growth is obtained from the sulphide oxidation process. The photo above shows the main body of a bacterium with lumps of elemental sulphur as these are excreted from the body. 

The bacteria have proven to be extremely robust in the face of a variety of challenges, which is demonstrated by the fact that not a single application has required a colony replacement since the first unit started up in 1993.’