The consortium includes CPI alongside G2O Water International Limited (G2O), Haydale Graphene Industries Plc and Sellafield Ltd.
The two year Innovate UK-supported project aims to develop a low cost self-cleaning coating technology based on functionalised graphene, which once applied to industrial membranes makes them highly resistant to fouling. The coating will be formulated and validated by the consortium for deployment in a number of different applications including desalination, oil and water separation and also nuclear waste water treatment.
Membrane filtration technology is a highly effective method of separating liquids used for a variety of high value applications. Currently within industry, one of the key issues related to membrane filter technology is fouling and the need to clean or change the filter on a regular basis. The novel smart filter will provide excellent recovery capability and remove the need for regular cleaning, thus enabling increases in productivity and operating lifetimes alongside reductions in costs and energy wastage.
The smart filter technology has already been demonstrated successfully by G2O in lab-scale tests and the collaboration will seek to translate the lab-scale work into a working manufacturing process at pilot production scale. G2O’s patented technology has been proven to dramatically increase the performance of the membrane and has the potential to transform the water and environmental industry by reducing energy costs by up to 90%. It also has the ability to effectively clean waste water so that the water can also be re-used.
CPI ‘s role in the project is to develop, characterise and scale-up the graphene based materials alongside applying the graphene coating onto the membrane.