Friday, March 2, 2007

An affordable way of removing viruses from drinking water

Pei Chiu (left), an associate professor in UD's Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and Yan Jin, a professor of environmental soil physics in UD's plant and soil sciences department, have developed an inexpensive, nonchlorine-based technology that can remove harmful microorganisms from drinking water, including viruses. (Credit: Image courtesy of University of Delaware)It's cheap, super efficient (removes 99.999 percent of viruses), and could change the world. No chlorine involved, cleans out bacteria, viruses, and various organic matter too.

"UD's patented technology, developed jointly by researchers in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and the College of Engineering, incorporates highly reactive iron in the filtering process to deliver a chemical “knock-out punch” to a host of notorious pathogens, from E. coli to rotavirus.
The new technology could dramatically improve the safety of drinking water around the globe, particularly in developing countries. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), over a billion people--one-sixth of the world's population--lack access to safe water supplies."

The article also talks about using it in agriculture, say on our spinach farms, where it can clean the re-circulated water (and prevent more deadly E. coli incidents).

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