Wednesday, October 26, 2011

New "Iron Man" Super-Cleaner Fights Pollution without Toxic Byproducts

A scientist at the Florida Institute of Technology has come up with a new compound that disinfects and cleans polluted water without producing toxic byproducts. It’s based on ferrate, which is a revved-up form of iron. Through the school’s technology transfer office, chemistry professor Virender K. Sharma has teamed up to commercialize the product with Ferratec, LLC, a group formed by an investment incubation firm based in St. Louis called The Incubation Factory. Ferratec has a background working with ferrate, including a complementary technology from global science/tech research leader Battelle Memorial Institute.

The use of ferrate as a cleanser is not a new technology, but until now the catch has been coming up with a cost-effective method for producing and distributing it. Iron oxides, which are considered environmentally safe, are the only byproducts of using ferrate to clean polluted water, so it wins over other conventional treatments that can produce carcinogens such as trihalomethanes and bromates. Unlike conventional treatment, which requires different substances to oxidize and coagulate, Sharma’s liquid ferrate compound can lower costs by doing both of those jobs, while outperforming conventional disinfectants. A key element in bringing the product to market is Sharma’s design for a low cost production method that users can employ on site, practically eliminating issues related to supply, stability and shelf life.

Source: Clean Technica (

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