Saturday, October 03, 2009

Spray me on the North 50...

A friend of mine in the funeral business tipped me off to the NEW THING in corpse management: alkaline hydrolysis.
  1. What is Water Resolution?
Water Resolution is the application of Alkaline Hydrolysis to human cadavers to produce a pure ash bone shadow.  It is an accelerated version of the natural process of hydrolysis driven decomposition after burial.
The individual body is essentially placed into a horizontal pressure vessel and then a fully automated process of pressure, high temperature, and alkalinity accelerates the natural process of tissue hydrolysis back into the building blocks of life.  The product is sent back to the environment to be recycled.
What is Alkaline Hydrolysis? 
Alkaline Hydrolysis is a natural process.  Bodies that are buried in the earth are degraded by alkaline hydrolysis, expedited by the soil bacteria.  This is a very slow process. 
Food in the intestine is digested into usable nutrients by alkaline hydrolysis, expedited by enzymes that operate at a pH 7-8 at body temperature.  This is a moderately fast process for relatively small amounts of tissue.
The WR² Alkaline Hydrolysis Process uses strong alkali (pH 14) to solubilize and hydrolyze tissue, expedited by heat at 150˚C in a pressurized vessel.  This process generates a solution of amino acids, peptides, sugars, and soap (salts of fatty acids) that that is suitable for release to drain, land applied as fertilizer, or recycled in many ways.  Also produced are pure white bone shadows (ash), which may be easily powdered and given to the relatives as in cremation.  The powder is 100% specific to that corpse. [More]
I thought he was kidding, but they are trying to sell these units here now.  It seems like a great idea for hazardous biological waste, which if you think about it, we sorta will become sometime.

The solid residue - ash bone shadow - looks like this:

Not a whole lot different from cremation ashes, seems to me.  But you also get the solution product that is safe for disposal anywhere.

So load my "product" in with the burndown, please.


Kent Schwartz said...

This process is increasingly used for disposal of animal carcasses in research and diagnostic labs. Increasing used commercially. Not quite to "Soylent Green"

buffalobill said...

I have heard that in biblical times bodies were disposed of in lime pits. Wouldn't that be an early form of 'Alakaline Hydrolysis'? Everything new is old again?

Anonymous said...

reminds me of the Dune saga when they used to "reclaim the moisture" of the deceased

notilltom said...

"apply me with the burndown" is there a pun lurking there? Besides, you might tie up part of the glyphosate and result in even more resistant marestail. Now that's a legacy.