Vortex Corp., a global innovator of chemical-free water purification products for consumer and commercial use, has been awarded a Phase Two $750,000 Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency Small Business Innovation Research (HSARPA SBIR) contract. This contract to develop chlorine-free water purification systems for municipal use leverages Vortex's patented and scalable photo-oxidation technology, which is the underpinning of its consumer Vortex Water Machine and its rugged Vortex Voyager unit, which can be used for emergency preparedness and homeland security.
Vortex Corp. has spearheaded the Interactive UV/Ozone System as a Chlorine Alternative project with support from the University of Arizona's Water Quality Center. Under this contract, the company will design a large-scale device sustained by photo-oxidation technology, mimicking the natural water purification phenomenon that occurs in the environment. Through an innovative application of ultraviolet light and ozone, both proven technologies, the system has the potential to significantly reduce (or eliminate) our nation's dependency on chlorine as a primary disinfectant in water treatment.
"This project demonstrates the feasibility of a natural alternative to chlorine disinfection for public water systems," said Vortex Corp. CEO Ray Denkewicz. "Further, it lays the groundwork for bringing the next generation of water purification technology, already incorporated in our consumer and commercial products, to widespread industrial and large-scale use."
Presently, chlorine is the main product used by municipal water treatment facilities nationwide, presenting a unique challenge to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. EPA. In recent studies, the storage and transportation of chlorine has been identified as a potential terrorism risk. Further, chlorinated byproducts have been linked to cancer.
To offset these domestic risks, Vortex successfully constructed a laboratory prototype in a Phase One project that was capable of purifying water without the use of chlorine, thus demonstrating that drinking water could be produced to meet EPA standards without chlorine (or a similar agent) in both municipal and commercial applications. The project, which began in late 2005, will continue through the end of 2007.
The HSARPA SBIR program funds early stage research and development aimed at enhancing the safety and security of American citizens, institutions and culture. To that end, the program actively solicits small businesses to provide innovative solutions for homeland security needs. All projects funded have commercialization potential in both government and civilian markets. Grantees retain all proprietary rights to resulting technologies.