Reactivation Services

Calgon Carbon Corporation is an environmentally conscious company - sustainability has vital implications in what we do every single day.

Calgon Carbon Corporation is an environmentally conscious company – sustainability has vital implications in what we do every single day. Recycling and reactivation are important parts of those initiatives. In fact, we have been recycling for years by reactivating spent carbon.

Features & Benefits:

After an activated carbon’s adsorptive capacity has been exhausted, it can be returned to Calgon Carbon for thermal reactivation. With high temperature reactivation followed by off-gas treatment, the adsorbed organic compounds are destroyed and reactivated carbon can be safely and cost-effectively recycled back to facilities for continued use. Our reactivation process can even handle spent carbon containing stubborn emerging contaminants such as PFAS, destroying greater than 99.99% total PFAS. A number of important steps are involved in the reactivation process:

  1. Spent activated carbon is heated in furnaces devoid of oxygen using steam as a selective oxidant.
  2. Adsorbed organics are either volatilized from the activated carbon or pyrolysed to a carbon char.
  3. Volatilized organics are destroyed in the furnace’s afterburner.
  4. Acid gases are removed by means of a chemical scrubber.
  5. The high-temperature reaction with steam serves to restore the adsorptive capacity of the activated carbon.

Through reactivation, the spent granular activated carbon can be recycled for reuse, virtually eliminating the costs and long-term liability associated with disposal.

A significant benefit of reactivation and recycling is that the CO2 footprint associated with reactivation is significantly lower than that associated with the production, supply and use of virgin activated carbon. With carbon reactivation facilities in the United States, Europe and Asia, Calgon Carbon makes it easy to help your company meet sustainability goals. Reactivated carbon is also an efficient, cost-effective alternative to virgin where appropriate.

Calgon Carbon Reactivation Services include the reactivation of spent granular activated carbon on a custom basis or a pool basis. Customers in the municipal drinking water, food application or industrial sectors can have their spent carbon reactivated with the resultant product being returned to them (Custom Reactivation).

Calgon Carbon’s custom municipal reactivation (CMR) products, custom food grade reactivation (CFR) products and custom industrial reactivation (CIR) products are put through the same quality testing system as the original virgin materials.

Reactivation Services Frequently Asked Questions

Carbon Acceptance Frequently Asked Questions

More Information on Spent Carbon Acceptance

Adsorbate Profile Document

Manifest Information and the EPA’s summary of the Hazardous Waste Manifest System

Land Disposal Restriction Form Information and Land Disposal Notification & Certification Form


Municipal Water Treatment

Used by governments and municipalities around the world to provide safe, clean drinking water.

Environmental Water Treatment

Cost-effective solution for treatment of industrial waste discharges and effective in the removal of numerous contaminants from groundwater.

Environmental Air Treatment

Remove contaminants from our air supply, such as toxic volatile organic compounds (VOCs) at air emissions sources.

Industrial Processes

Purification for liquid-phase applications in chemical and petroleum refining industries and for gasoline- vapor recovery equipment.

Food & Beverage

Remove impurities such as color and odor from food liquids, syrups, organic acids, amino acids, vitamins, beverage alcohols and glycerin.


Purify many products in the pharmaceutical industry, including antibiotics, steroids, and vitamins.