Working in a laboratory every day can bring excitement and daily surprises. What is even more interesting is the places you would not expect to find one of these laboratories.
Brewery and Winery Laboratory
In many Brewery and Winery labs, technicians are testing products they are using to make the beverage. Then the testing does not stop until the finished product is packaged for sale and consumption. As the product is being made, testing on fermentation, pH, yeast, and other test parameters is used to make sure the finished product is what it should be. The lab techs are testing bacteria, wild yeast, alcohol, and gluten. These tests generate byproducts which are often hazardous waste. These waste streams generally consist of flammable solvents and corrosives due to chemicals used in tests like methanol, ethanol, and hydrochloric acid.
The automotive industry has come a long way since the innovation of the assembly line. Today a vehicle is put through numerous testing including combustion structure, engine efficiency, emissions, and much more. Some of the waste that Automotive labs generate would be used oil, bi-products of parts washing, paints, and much more. In addition, universal waste such as batteries, lights, and defective electronic devices that fail in testing equipment is also generated.
In order to succeed, there is typically failure in the beginning. As technology continues to develop, research and development is a major player in the success of new technology. Large companies use integrated materials and manufacturing, data analytics, and robotic research to develop products. With this testing, a product goes through numerous tests to ensure that the product can withstand the elements it must face. Through testing, there are defective electronic devices that can be recycled as regulated by universal waste requirements. Many electronic devices can contain lead solder, batteries, and various heavy metal components.
Where You Can Expect to Find a Laboratory
When we think of laboratories many of us think of our hospital lab or educational labs at colleges and high schools. But there are many different types of labs here are a few, including biomedical, toxicology, pathology, research and development (R&D) and diagnostic laboratories. Some of the waste generated by these labs include:
- Infectious and biomedical waste
- Contaminated with blood or bodily fluids.
- Flammable Solvents
- Expired or unused drugs and vaccines.
- Needles, blades, or syringes.
- Non-Hazardous / Not regulated by EPA
- waste that cannot be thrown in the general trash and needs to be disposed of by incineration or secure destruction.