This paper reports on a simple analytical procedure used to demonstrate the technical feasibility of adaptive plasma-assisted incineration. APAI is a novel concept that addresses current difficulties in the treatment of hazardous organic waste. It features continual optimization of a plasma afterburner’s operating conditions for cost-effective destruction of persistent contaminants under variable feed loads. Hence, on-line composition monitoring is a key element of the process. A diagnostic method was specifically developed for an experimental model system that required optical measurements from the jet of a 25–kW induction plasma torch. The method used photodiode array detection of visible emission from the Swan band system of C<sub>2</sub> to track the destruction of organic compounds. This rapid, simple, and inexpensive procedure proved adequate for demonstration purposes.

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