Preventing water crises
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Preventing water crises

Using sunlight to clean water

Researchers at the University of Szeged are working on a nanotechnological water treatment device. Their innovation may provide clean water for millions worldwide in the future.

Researchers at the Department of Chemistry of the University of Szeged are contributing to water management and water treatment systems with their cutting-edge development work conducted in cooperation with the Applied Material Science Research Group of Amity University in India and Hungarian partners.

“We are designing a system that can be operated economically on a smaller scale, and which is effective both against the remnants of pharmaceutical and agrochemicals that cause problems in Hungary and the textile industry wastewater that are problematic in the partner country,” said Klára Hernádi, a lecturer at the university’s Department of Applied and Environmental Chemistry, in a statement published by the University of Szeged.

The family of highly efficient photocatalysts that operate with the energy of visible light and which can be produced using green technology contains bismuth oxohalides synthesised using plant templates. This new type of photocatalyst can utilise a significant proportion of sunlight, and therefore it is able to neutralise organic materials in the water, or perform biological disinfection on treated surfaces.

The 3-year project concluding on 30 November 2019, which has received HUF 55,572,250 in funding, tests the industrial applicability and the possibility of development into a product of the complex water treatment system they wish to develop.

The prototype may help to develop a device that would be capable of efficient decomposition of the various harmful organic pollutants discharged into wastewater and eventually fresh water by agriculture and the food and textile industries Photo: Shutterstock
Further information: Research Group of Environmental Chemistry

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