Användande av naturliga produkter för att förbättra vattenrening och jordsanering

Tidsperiod: 2012-01-01 till 2014-12-31

Projektledare: Adrian Rennie

Finansiär: Vetenskapsrådet

Bidragstyp: Projektbidrag

Budget: 747 000 SEK

A key requirement for society is clean water for drinking, washing and other domestic purposes. This provision is coupled to the need to protect the environment from pollution. In many countries, the cost of infrastructure and operation of conventional water treatment plants is prohibitively large. A major initial step in water purification is aggregation of particulate impurities so that they settle from the water that can then be filtered. The present project investigates alternative flocculants from natural products. Crushed seeds from the Moringa tree have been found to be effective, both in small-scale purification and to replace synthetic chemicals in larger treatment works. These give compact dense aggregates of impurity particles. Work will study how the protein in the seeds acts so effectively to aggregate different particles even in the presence of surface active impurities. The seed protein can replace chemicals such as aluminium and iron salts or synthetic polymers that have been identified as potential hazards to health. The work will identify what refinement of the protein is necessary and whether alternative seeds from other species of Moringa or even other plants could be used. In parallel, the capability of binding metals to the protein will be explored. Washing of contaminated soil with such binding agents is a good means to remove heavy metal impurities. Development of these technologies using natural products is likely to be of use in many countries.