Sand, coral and even waste building materials can become extremely efficient sorbents for water purification from arsenic, if they are treated for this purpose. Scientists of Tomsk Polytechnic University have revealed a new technology during experiments. In practice, they succeeded to purify at least 3.6 m3 of water with the help of 200 grams of sorbent from the available raw materials, the cost of which will be a little more than $1 to end consumers.
This may be a Vietnamese sand, corals, in our region, one can use sand, waste from the production of bricks, aerated concrete, -- says the project's scientific supervisor Mikhail Khaskelberg, a leading engineer of the 12 Lab of the Institute of High Technology Physics.
For the experiments in the laboratory they uses a solution in which the arsenic concentration was up to 50 times higher than the standards set by the World Health Organization.
Arsenic in drinking water is a huge problem for many countries across the world: India, China, USA, Argentina, Chile, Poland, Hungary and others. In Russia, arsenic containing regions are the Trans-Baikal, Khabarovsk, Perm, Stavropol, Magadan, Penza region, Dagestan, Tuva.
This technology allows any country to find the cheapest material to produce sorbents.
"Yes, scientists in different countries are studying the same corals and sand as sorbents. But we succeeded in making these simple materials to work very effectively, using simple and inexpensive processes in terms of future production," -- says Mikhail Khaskelberg.
Thus, the scientists use chemical adsorption resulting in contaminant deposition on the sorbent surface. The laboratory use electrokinetic adsorption, in which the positively charged heavy metal ions are attracted to the negatively charged surface of a sorbent.
"This technology can be used for purification of private wells water and waste industrial water, -- the scientist said. "According to our calculations, one glass sorbent should be enough for at least 60-90 days, and if there is catastrophically much arsenic in water.
"Furthermore, our sorbent can be regenerated at least 10 times. Moreover, if a leading Bayer sorbent Bayoxide® E 33 on the market costs about $ 27 per kg, our technology can do sorbent by cost at $ 4-5 per kg. It is clear that it is not necessary "to fill in" a filter with only our sorbent. One needs only some part, the rest volume can be safely filled with any known sorbent -- one gets a high quality filter with a wide range of applications."
The scientists have already submitted an application for patenting the technology. They are also looking for Russian and foreign investors to introduce their development.
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