(RTO) thermal oxidizer process flow diagram design

Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer (RTO)

Regenerative Thermal Oxidizers from The CMM Group are designed to destroy air pollutants emitted from process exhaust streams at temperatures ranging from 815°C (1,500 F) to 980°C (1,800 F). This VOC abatement technology utilizes ceramic media packed into vertical canisters as a high-efficiency heat exchanger. High temperature thermal oxidation is achieved as pollutants pass through the ceramic media, are mixed, and held at elevated temperatures in the combustion chamber. The basic design concept of thermal oxidization is to promote a chemical reaction of the air pollutant with oxygen at elevated temperatures. This reaction destroys the VOC emission in the air stream by converting it to CO2, H2O and heat. The rate of reaction is controlled by three-(3) interdependent and critical factors; time, temperature and turbulence. Air pollutant destruction efficiencies of 99% can typically be guaranteed.

Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer Typical Applications

Common uses include:

Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer Advantages and Disadvantages


  • Moderate capital cost
  • Low operating costs with low air pollutant concentrations
  • Very high thermal heat recovery
  • Capable of high inlet temperatures


  • Simple two chamber design limited to 98% VOC removal
  • More moving parts, more maintenance

Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer Standard Features 

  • High air pollutant destruction efficiencies are guaranteed
  • Lowest operating costs available with energy efficient design
  • Designed to meet your specific project requirements
  • Proven high quality components are used throughout
  • Control scheme is designed to automatically react to your manufacturing process
  • Modern PLC based controls with color touch-screen interface
  • Data-logger is included for recordkeeping
  • Meets or exceeds all regulations

CMM RTO Services

CMM provides expert regenerative thermal oxidizer service to ensure minimal downtime and maximum efficiency of your RTO. Our services include:

  • PLC/HMI replacement
  • Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) upgrade
  • RTO insulation repair/replacement
  • RTO media cleaning
  • Preventative maintenance
  • Spare & replacement parts
  • Retrofits & relocation


Request a Quote for Thermal Oxidizers & VOC Abatement Systems

Let us know how The CMM Group can assist you.


How Does A Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer Work?

In operation, the process exhaust fumes are forced into the Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer inlet manifold (with a high pressure supply fan) and directed into one of the energy recovery canisters by use of inlet (switch) valves. The pollutant laden air passes from the valve assembly vertically upward through the first of the heat exchanger canisters where it adsorbs heat from the ceramic media (thus eventually cooling the media).
This preheated air then enters the combustion chamber (typically at a temperature very close to that required for oxidation), is thoroughly mixed for temperature uniformity (turbulence) and held in the combustion chamber at the elevated set-point temperature (temperature) for a residence time of ~0.5 seconds (time). Air pollutant destruction takes place within the combustion chamber where auxiliary fuel is introduced if necessary.
After passing through the combustion chamber, the clean (hot) air is routed vertically downward through a second energy recovery canister where the heat generated during thermal oxidation is adsorbed by the ceramic media (thus preheating the media for the next cycle). The clean (cooled) air is routed to the atmosphere through outlet (switch) valves, the exhaust manifold and ultimately through the exhaust stack. To maximize the heat exchange, the switching valves alternate the airflow path between canisters to continuously regenerate the heat stored within the ceramic media. Thermal energy recovery (TER) efficiencies range from 85% to 97%. To maintain low external shell temperatures and minimize radiant heat loss, the combustion chamber is insulated with long-life ceramic fiber modules. The external shell is typically fabricated of carbon steel. Air pollutant destruction efficiencies of 99% can typically be guaranteed.

Why Choose The CMM Group

      • We provide turnkey, Single Source Solutions that minimize downtime, maximize productivity, save energy and reduce operating costs.
      • Our professional staff has many years of oxidizer manufacturing design, fabrication and sales experience in a wide range of industries from Aerospace Parts to Wood Finishing.
      • As a custom thermal oxidizer manufacturer, we’re committed to providing personalized, expert advice.
      • We offer competitively priced solutions to a variety of equipment needs.
      • We meet specific customer needs through all phases of project implementation while completing jobs on-time and within budget.
      • We offer free support because we care about your site as much as you do.

What CMM Customers Say

“The hard work and dedication your team made this project a great success. I greatly appreciate that the installation went exactly as planned both time and budget wise, and that we were back in production with minimal disruption as promised. Additionally the efficiencies and energy savings have proven to be accurate and genuine.”
-Satisfied customer,

Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer Videos

View oxidizer animation videos from The CMM Group - a Thermal Oxidizer Manufacturer



Request a Quote for Thermal Oxidizers & Volatile Organic Compound Destruction

Call (920) 336-9800 to let us know how The CMM Group can assist you.