Navigation Links
High-tech materials purify water with sunlight
Date:3/16/2014

DALLAS, March 16, 2014 Sunlight plus a common titanium pigment might be the secret recipe for ridding pharmaceuticals, pesticides and other potentially harmful pollutants from drinking water. Scientists combined several high-tech components to make an easy-to-use water purifier that could work with the world's most basic form of energy, sunlight, in a boon for water purification in rural areas or developing countries.

The talk was one of more than 10,000 presentations at the 247th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world's largest scientific society, taking place here through Thursday.

Anne Morrissey, Ph.D., explained that the new technology could someday be incorporated into an easy-to-use consumer product that would remove these stubborn pollutants from drinking water as a final step after it has already been treated with conventional methods.

Her group at Dublin City University in Ireland started with a compound called titanium dioxide (TiO2), a powder used to whiten paints, paper, toothpaste, food and other products. With the right energy, TiO2 can also act as a catalyst a molecule that encourages chemical reactions breaking down unwanted compounds in drinking water like pesticides and pharmaceuticals. Morrissey explained that modifying current water treatment methods to get rid of these potentially harmful species can be costly and energy-intensive, and often, these modifications don't completely eliminate the pollutants.

But Morrissey said TiO2 is usually only activated by ultraviolet light, which is produced by special bulbs. To access titanium dioxide's properties with the sun's light, Morrissey and her group experimented with different shapes of TiO2 that would better absorb visible light. She found that nanotubes about 1,000 times thinner than a human hair were best, but they couldn't do it on their own.

That's why she turned to graphene, a material made of sheets of carbon just one atom thick. "Graphene is the magic material, but its use for water treatment hasn't been fully developed," she said. "It has great potential." Morrissey put the TiO2 nanotubes on these graphene sheets. Pollutants stuck to the surface of the graphene as they passed by, allowing TiO2 to get close enough to break them down.

Her research group successfully tested the system on diclofenac, an anti-inflammatory drug notorious for wiping out nearly an entire vulture population in India.

"We're looking at using the graphene composite in a cartridge for one-step drinking water treatment," said Morrissey. "You could just buy a cartridge off the shelf and plop it into the pipe where the drinking water comes into your house." The cartridge system would also ensure that the graphene stays immobilized and does its job without contaminating the clean water.

Morrissey noted, however, that the technology will never be strong enough to completely clean drinking water on its own. Rather, she sees it as a polishing step after traditional water treatment processes to mop up the most insidious pollutants.

That could be especially useful in her home country, where she said many rural communities use small water treatment systems that only supply a few dozen homes. Because they don't have the infrastructure that large-scale urban treatment plants do, she thinks that a cartridge that could clean with only the sun's energy could help make their water safer.

Ultimately, Morrissey said there are still many questions to answer before declaring her TiO2-graphene system a success. One of the biggest is making sure that when it breaks down pollutants, it is producing harmless byproducts. She also wants to make sure that the energy required for the system compares favorably to simply using TiO2 with ultraviolet light. But so far, she reported, her design seems to be easier to make and dispose of than other visible-light activated TiO2 purifiers.


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael Bernstein
214-853-8005 (Dallas Press Center, March 14-19)
202-872-6042
m_bernstein@acs.org

Contact: Katie Cottingham, Ph.D.
214-853-8005 (Dallas Press Center, March 14-19)
301-775-8455
k_cottingham@acs.org

American Chemical Society


Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Kudos for 3 NJIT Enterprise Development Center high-tech companies
2. High-Tech CT Scan May Get People With Chest Pain Home Faster
3. As Doctors Go High-Tech, Staff Injuries May Rise
4. High-tech cerebral palsy research at SDSU
5. Ambiance Expands Romantic Technology Leadership with New High-Tech Toy
6. Given Brand Sports Now Offers a Full Line of High-Tech Running Watches and Gear Helping Athletes Set Their Race P.R.'s
7. Infection Prevention, High-tech Transport Boost St. Louis Children’s to #6 in the Nation
8. Botanisol™, A Glendale-Based High-Tech Firm Applies for $250,000 Grant to Create High-Paying Research Associate Jobs and Complete Pre-Clinical Development
9. High-tech whole body scan could improve treatment of bone marrow cancer
10. New high-tech glasses detect cancer cells during surgery
11. No Added Cancer Risk From Hip Replacement Materials: Study
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... May 26, 2017 , ... Leading CEOs from biotech, pharmaceutical, ... and 31st at The Four Seasons Hotel Boston. , The Boston CEO ... offering exclusive access to key decision makers who influence deal making and investment. ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... May 26, 2017 , ... Somnoware, ... NOX-T3 portable sleep monitor with its Somnoware Sleep Device Interface (SDI). Somnoware SDI ... diagnostic device operations. With this platform, initializing devices and importing studies are just ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... May 26, 2017 , ... via seating ... mesh back 24/7 task chair specifically designed for clinical areas. Genie Copper Mesh ... to partner with Cupron® to provide customers with a game changing chair that ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... ... Yisrayl Hawkins, Pastor and Overseer at The House of Yahweh in Abilene, Texas, ... being discussed by President Donald Trump and the rest of the world. Donald Trump ... peace talks in the continuous battle between Israel and Palestine. The world’s eyes are ...
(Date:5/26/2017)... ... May 26, 2017 , ... Dr. Alex Rabinovich, a highly-skilled oral ... new, informational blog post on insurance options. If a Bay Area patient has to ... save time and money. Visiting an in-network provider for a second opinion can ensure ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/18/2017)... -- Two Bayer U.S. Pharmaceutical leaders received top awards from ... th Woman of the Year event ... mission of furthering the advancement and impact of women ... Powell-Steffen , senior director of brand activation and inside ... Howe , a regional business manager for New England ...
(Date:5/11/2017)... 2017  Thornhill Research Inc. ( Toronto, ... $8,049,024 USD five-year, firm-fixed-priced, indefinite-quantity/indefinite-delivery contract by the ... Corporation (CCC) ( Ottawa, Ontario, Canada ... general anesthesia to patients requiring emergency medical procedures ... Marine Corps have been a longtime partner with ...
(Date:5/10/2017)... Md. , May 10, 2017 CSSi, ... solutions for the clinical research industry, is proud to ... www.CSSiEnroll.com . The new website features both enriched content ... user experience and enhances the company,s already well-established position ... industry. "After many months of hard ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: