While water may be the most essential resource, the technology used to harness its worth is equally as great. Without purification and cooling systems, for example, we wouldn’t have as much access to H20 as we need. This makes it essential to explore technologies that are being developed for the efficient use of water.
Nanotechnology in Filtration
The use of nanotechnology is nothing new, but its use in water can mean the difference between 1.6-million people dying every year from water related diseases and a much lower number. Researchers in India have discovered a way for nanoparticles to remove bacteria, microbes and other unwanted particles from H20.
The technology emits silver ions that actively seek out contaminants and destroy them. Such sophistication could be a game changer for developing countries that have to contend with diseases such as cholera and much recently Ebola.
While membrane chemistry has been used in projects such as desalinating saltwater, there’s new developments that could make this process cheaper. As is, the process of purification costs up to $1/m³. However, this could soon reduce to between $0.80 and $0.50 over five years.
Head of global development for water at the chemical company BASF, Yannick Fovet, explains that new ceramic membranes could make the process of treating saltwater cheaper, while keeping with system integrity and longevity.
Every day we’re educated on how to limit our use of water, yet we still find an inflated utility bill at the end of the month. According to research, up to 45m cubic metres of water is lost in a single household every day in developed countries. This may be a result of a leaking faucets or a loose tap, but such wastage is taxing on your wallet, the economy and environment.
This is where smart monitoring comes in. Dale Hartley, director of business development at SebaKMT, says that electronic devices such as pressure and acoustic sensors that provide real time data can help companies reduce wastage by detecting leaks quicker. This will also negate the need to build extra treatment plants, reservoirs and water catchment facilities.
Wastewater is a headache inducing issue for many, even in developed countries. Most of it either get flushed down rivers untreated or used as irrigation water. Apart from the obvious side effects, the process is not sustainable as it contradicts with the water cycle. This could soon change as new technologies, like HYBACS Units found at Ashborne Sewage Treatment Works, might just have the capabilities to process wastewater, transforming it into energy or water for consumption.