Policy / Systems / Technology

March 25, 2011


New Nano-Bubble Technology May Help Dissolve Sludge and Improve Water Quality

Keywords: Ecosystems / Biodiversity Environmental Technology Manufacturing industry University / Research institute 

Tadayuki Imanaka, professor of the College of Life Sciences at Ritsumeikan University, launched on December 3, 2010, a set of demonstration experiments aimed at using a nano-bubble (NB) generator to reduce water pollution in a natural pond at the university's Biwako-Kusatsu Campus in Shiga Prefecture. A nano-bubble is a microscopic air bubble less than one micrometer in diameter.

Through previous research, Imanaka's laboratory has discovered the need to promote the growth of aerobic microorganisms and energize them in order to decompose sludge that has accumulated at the bottom of Lake Biwa and thus improve the lake's water quality. The professor's laboratory also confirmed in an experiment using Escherichia coli that NB is helpful in activating microorganisms. Another experiment aimed at dissolving the lake's sludge with NB treatment achieved favorable results, with improvements seen in transparency and contaminant quantity.

For the more recent demonstration experiments, Imanaka developed an ultramicroscopic pore NB generator in conjunction with Nishiken Devise Co., a developer of heat-related devices that use composite ceramics. While afloat on the water, the generator can create NB at the bottom of the lake. It is also equipped with solar panels and operates 24 hours a day without external electricity.

Imanaka intends to analyze details of the mechanism of how NB purifies water by periodically measuring water quality during the test's six-month period, with the future goal of using the mechanism to improve Lake Biwa's water environment.

Posted: 2011/03/25 06:00:15 AM



Ritsumeikan University official website