The newly developed treatment system is intended to work with commercial treatment systems
Researchers from Rice University in Houston, Texas, developed a water treatment system that can be tuned to selectively pull toxins from drinking water and wastewater. The research, published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, uses composite electrodes that enable captive deionisation. The charged electrodes then pull target ions from fluids and can be reused, according to The Engineer.
The idea behind the treatment system is to address hazardous ions, without removing non-hazardous ions from drinking water systems or wastewater. The water treatment system’s electrodes are coated with activated carbon and thin film resin particles, held together by quaternized polyvinyl alcohol. When sulphate-contaminated water flows through, sulphate ions are attracted by the electrodes.
“Traditional methods to remove everything, such as reverse osmosis, as expensive and energy intensive,” said Lead Researcher Qilin Li. “If we figure out a way to just fish out these minor components, we can save a lot of energy.”
The system is intended to work with current commercial water treatment systems and address a variety of contaminants. In the future, the system may be possible to scale down for residential water treatment.
Read more about the treatment system here.