Biodiversity / Food / Water

June 21, 2009


Central Glass, IBM Jointly Develop New Water Filtration Membrane

Keywords: Environmental Technology Manufacturing industry Water 

Central Glass Co., a major Japanese glass manufacturer with a proprietary chemical fluorine technology, and IBM announced on March 16, 2009, that they had jointly developed new membrane material for water treatment that can alleviate the growing shortage of safe drinking water worldwide. Membrane filtration is considered one of the most energy-efficient methods for removing salt and purifying water. The new membrane enables effective water desalination and removal of toxins, such as arsenic.

Conventional membranes are easily damaged by chlorine, a chemical commonly used for water treatment. Meanwhile, arsenic-polluted drinking water has become a significant health issue worldwide. To respond to these issues, this joint project focused on developing a membrane that performs well under basic (alkaline) conditions to remove arsenic from water while being highly resistant to chlorine damage.

The new membrane material, developed with fluorine materials, has the unique chemical characteristic of becoming hydrophilic under basic conditions. This allows greater control of the amount of water transmitted through the membrane, from low to high. Furthermore, because basic conditions cause arsenic to become ionic and easier to remove using a reverse osmosis membrane, this technology makes it possible to obtain safe drinking water from contaminated water.

IBM Makes Water Clean With Smarter, More Energy-Efficient Purification

Posted: 2009/06/21 06:00:15 AM