what is alkaline hydrolysis

Alkaline hydrolysis (also called biocremation, resomation,flameless cremation, or water cremation) is a process for the disposal of human remains which produces less carbon dioxide and pollutants than cremation. The process is being marketed as an alternative to the traditional options of burial or cremation.

The process is based on alkaline hydrolysis: the body is placed in a pressure vessel that is then filled with a mixture of water and lye, and heated to a temperature around 160 °C (320 °F), but at an elevated pressure, which prevents boiling.

Instead, the body is effectively broken down into its chemical components, which takes approximately four to six hours. A lower temperature and pressure may be used, but at a longer duration (98 °C (208 °F), 14 to 16 hours). At the beginning of the process, the mixture is strongly basic, with a pH level of approximately 14; pH drops to 11 by the end, but the final pH level depends on the total operation time and the amount of fat in the body.