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Researchers Create Graphene-Based Sieve That Removes Salt From Seawater
Researchers Create Graphene-Based Sieve That Removes Salt From Seawater

Researchers Create Graphene-Based Sieve That Removes Salt From Seawater

Researchers at the University of Manchester have created a Graphene membrane that can sieve salt out of seawater turning it into drinking water.

The development by UK-based researchers brings closer the prospect of providing clean water to millions of people who struggle to gain access.

The team at the University of Manchester, where colleagues won a Nobel Prize in 2010 for first extracting graphene, have managed to precisely control the sizes of pores in a graphene oxide sieve.

The discovery allows them to filter out salts from water to make it safe to drink, they announced in the journal Nature Nanotechnology.

With man-made climate change reducing cities’ water supplies, countries have been increasingly investing in “desalination” technologies.

The UN has predicted that around 1.2 billion people, or 14% of the world’s population, will experience difficulties sourcing clean water by 2025.

Although the team do not yet have a full working prototype of the device yet, they believe that the production of a cheap filters is only a relatively short time away.

It could lead the way to countries building small-scale de-salination plants without having to commit use resources into building large scale facilities.

Professor Rahul Nair, who led the team of researchers in Manchester, said it is a “significant step forward” that will “open new possibilities for improving the efficiency of desalination technology”.

He said: “Realisation of scalable membranes with uniform pore size down to atomic scale is a significant step forward and will open new possibilities for improving the efficiency of desalination technology.

“This is the first clear-cut experiment in this regime. We also demonstrate that there are realistic possibilities to scale up the described approach and mass produce graphene-based membranes with required sieve sizes.”

Agencies/Canadajournal




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