Munich Airport remains the only airport in the world that recycles and reuses its de-icing fluids onsite. The quantity of de-icing agents used ranges from 2,000 tons in a mild winter to 8,000 tons when conditions ar especially harsh.
With the recycling process, FMG has been able to reduce the quota of new de-icing products consumed to well below 50 percent. The actual quota varies according to the severity of the winter, but on occasion, the recycling quota is far above 50 percent. In addition, the recycling operations reduces the wastewater resulting from aircraft de-icing. The recycled amount no longer has to be purified in the treatment plant and can instead be reused as new de-icing fluid.
The wastewater arising during aircraft de-icing travels along slotted gutters and ducts into dedicated underground collecting tanks. Where the glycol concentration is at least 5 percent, it is reconditioned in the recycling plant and reused for aircraft de-icing within four days. Approximately 70 percent of the glycol contained in the de-icing fluid can be recovered and recycled in this manner. Where the proportion of glycol is less than 5%, the de-icing water is moved to a de-icing water basin via a sewer system. In this case recycling no longer makes sense for technical and economical reasons.