Pellucid Water has conducted numerous field studies on water supply and wastewater effluent from public and private institutions. These studies contribute to the proposed project by demonstrating the effectiveness of the application of cold plasma to removal of organic and inorganic compounds under various chemical matrixes. The figure at left presents field samples before and after cold plasma treatment. From left, untreated sample from paper mill; same sampled treated with cold plasma; sample from effluent of paper mill treatment system; same sample treated with cold plasma.
Purification data was obtained on ~200 ml of organically contaminated water (benzene: 194 ppm; toluene: 220 ppm; ethylbenzene: 271; m- and p-xylene: 860 ppm; o-xylene: 377 ppm), which was treated using plasma treatments in an original DMP reactor designed at the Petru Poni Institute for Macromolecular Chemistry in Iasi, Romania and developed at the Center for Plasma-Aided Manufacturing (CPAM) in Madison, Wisconsin. (The DMP research reactor produces sustained discharges in a vapor/liquid medium, which may be significantly more efficient in the processing of liquid phase material (Dense Medium Plasma-Plasma-Enhanced Decontamination of Water of Aromatic Compounds, Sorin Manolache, Vasgen Shamamian, and Ferencz. Denes, J. Env. Eng. © ASCE / Jan 2004 / 17 – 25).
A variety of chemicals (e.g., benzene, toluene, xylenes, ethyl benzene, ethanol, i-propanol, acetone, chlorobenzene, TCE trichloro-ethylene, MTBE methyl t-butyl ether, ethyl acetate, methyl meth-acrylate, DOX dioxane), covering major classes of organic compounds (hydrocarbons, alcohols, ketone, ethers, esters, halogenated hydrocarbons), have been studied by Dr. Manolache during 2000–2010 experiments at CPAM using synthetic samples.
Complex mixtures of contaminants can have a complex chemical mechanism and response to experimental parameters; however, this can be a huge advantage for decontamination processes. This is due to the fact that active species (e.g., free radicals, ions, very reactive molecular compounds) generated by plasma treatment of a compound can act as a reagent for another chemical compound that is normally not so reactive, inducing synergetic effects.
Preliminary data and early experimental results demonstrate that the Pellucid Water's cold plasma has potential to purify, disinfect, and desalinate water. In experiments on greywater and on water that was artificially contaminated with aromatic hydrocarbons, toxic molecules concentration were reduced by at least 3-4 orders of magnitude with low energy requirements and short (~2 min.) treatment times.
Additional capabilities of Pellucid Water cold plasma are highlighted below. See Pellucid Plasma regarding the differences between Pellucid Water cold plasma and other types of plasma used commercially or under study.
Pellucid Water has conducted numerous field studies on effectiveness of the application of cold plasma to removal of inorganic compounds under various chemical matrixes. Reduction on total phosphorus, hardness or metallic compounds have been demonstrated.
Disinfectant data was obtained by testing water contaminated with 16 environmental Gram positive and Gram negative bacterial isolates, including species from Bacillus, Corynebacterium, Enterobacter, Klebsiella, Micrococcus, Proteus, Pseudomonas, Shigella, and Staphylococcus, to ensure that the plasma treatment is effective against a broad spectrum of bacteria. After 20s of Ar/plasma treatment, 91% of the bacteria were killed. Increasing the treatment time to 60s increased the inactivation rate to over 98%. Treatment with O2/plasma showed similar results, with about 99% bacteria inactivated after 20–120s. No reduction in bacterial counts was observed in controls (Dense Medium Plasma Environments: A New Approach for the Disinfection of Water, S. Manolache, E. B. Somers, A. C. L. Wong, V. Shamamian and F. Denes, Environmental Science and Technology 18, 3780 – 3785, 2001).
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The vials on the right contain samples of untreated (initial) and treated (final) municipal wastewater. Both were treated with Pellucid Water cold plasma. The concentration of Phosphorus was reduced in both samples to approximately 0.04 PPM.