HOME ABOUT CONTACT PREVIOUS ISSUES SUBSCRIBE MEDIA & ADS
LATEST UPDATES » Molecular Marvel       » Biogas beats Bioethanol       » Brain 'switch' can Turn off Drug Addiction (Eye on China)       » Novel Imaging Technology REFI takes Clinicians closer to detecting Stage 0 Tumour Lesions (Eye on China)      
BIOBOARD - NEPAL
Fly ash waste used as water purifier
A nanomembrane filter that uses inexpensive fly ash waste, a byproduct of thermal power plants, could offer an environment-friendly option to treat water, says a new study.

Developed by a team of scientists from Nepal's Tribhuvan University and South Korea's Chonbuk National University and Hanyang University the nanomembrane filter is made of fly ash and polyurethane and is coated with silver nanoparticles.

Their tests show that the filter can adsorb arsenic and dyes; and kill disease-causing microorganisms. The spider-web-like membrane captures particles and microorganisms bigger than its pores, resulting in better purification of water than conventional filters.

The technique offers new ways to use one polluting waste material to control other pollutants in scalable and inexpensive ways, the report says. Researchers are working on ways to improve the adsorption capacity and regenerative ability of these membranes for commercial water and air filters.

"The formation of spider-web-like nanonets not only increases the surface area of the membrane but also reduces the pore size," lead author Hem Raj Pant of the Institute of Engineering, Kathmandu, explained. As a result, impure water takes longer to pass through the filter and that traps impurities, he said.

Silver nanoparticles added to the membrane give it antibacterial properties, but the paper does not mention any water quality analysis, says Prakash Amatya, technical advisor at Handmade Water, a non-profit that treats waste water from dyeing units In Kathmandu.

Amatya also says that the paper sheds no light on how the toxic heavy metal compounds in the fly ash can be safely and cost-effectively prevented from leeching into water. "The findings seem promising but they still need to be tested to gauge water quality."

According to a 2012 report of Nepal's Central Bureau of Statistics, less than half of Nepal's urban households use water purification technologies, while the number is even lower at 13 per cent in Nepal's rural areas.

Arinita Maskey Shrestha, water, sanitation and hygiene specialist at UNICEF, Kathmandu, described Pant's study as "interesting", but was uncertain about its suitability in Nepal that is classified among the world's least developed countries. "In Nepal, various water treatment technologies have been rejected due to the complexity of day-to-day maintenance and high installation costs," he said.

Most Nepalis prefer simple water purification methods such as boiling to meet their drinking water requirements.

Bhrikuti Rai
Source: Science Development Network

Click here for the complete issue.

EDITORS' CHOICE  

Credits to: American Chemical Society
COLUMNS  

APBN Editorial Calendar 2015
Trends and Predictions for 2015 Robotics in Healthcare Nutrition Universal Health Coverage
Start-Up Biotech Companies Preventative and Translational Medicine Biofuels ASEAN Economic Community and Asia's Life Sciences Industry
Big Data: Healthcare and Drug Development Antibody Engineering in Japan Christmas Edition
APBN Editorial Calendar 2016
Korea's Biotechnology Industry Nutrition and Allergies: Are we, Too Clean? Medical Devices and Technology: Innovation that leaves an Inspiration Tobacco Smoking: The 'Real' Cost of One Cigarette
Life-Saving Opportunities: A Guide to Regenerative Medicine Occupational Health Water Technology Olympics: Evolution of Sports
Respiratory: Seasonal flu viruses
MAGAZINE TAGS
About Us
Events
Available issues
Editorial Board
Letters to Editor
Instructions to Authors
Advertise with Us
CONTACT
World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd.
5 Toh Tuck Link, Singapore 596224
Tel: 65-6466-5775
Fax: 65-6467-7667
» Editorial Enquiries: biotech_edit@wspc.com
» For Subscriptions, Advertisements &
   Media Partnerships Enquiries:
   Ms PoPo Kwok or Ms Sok Ching Lim
Copyright© 2015 World Scientific Publishing Co Pte Ltd  •  Privacy Policy