ECU: High-tech crystalline alloy cheap and effective wastewater treatment
WATER security is an increasing cause for concern, particularly in drought-afflicted Australia.
New research carried out by researchers at Edith Cowan University could revolutionise wastewater treatment with what may at first appear to be a simple piece of foil.
Researchers have produced a high-tech crystalline alloy capable of removing pollutants from huge amounts of wastewater in just minutes.
Lead Researcher Associate Professor Laichang Zhang said the cheap, but highly effective, technology has significant potential in the textile and mining industries.
“Mining and textile production produces huge amounts of wastewater that is contaminated with heavy metals and dyes,” he said.
“We can produce enough crystalline alloy to treat one tonne of wastewater for just $15.
“Additionally, we can reuse the crystalline alloy up to five times while still maintaining its effectiveness.”
The alloy offers significant advantages to the traditional method of treating wastewater using commercial iron powder.
“Using iron powder leaves you with a large amount of iron sludge that must be stored,” Professor Zhang said.
“It is expensive to produce and can only be used once.”
Professor Zhang said he was working with partners in industry to further improve the alloy’s efficiency and cost-effectiveness.
The study was published in the journal.