Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee

IIT Roorkee designs technology to remove arsenic, heavy metals from water

October 15, 2022
IIT Roorkee showcased affordable and point-of-use technology developed by its researchers to produce arsenic-free drinking water in India’s first-of-its-kind, Mega R&D Fair ‘IInvenTiv’

The R&D Fair is organized at IIT Delhi to commemorate 75 years of India’s independence as part of the ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ initiative.

Researchers said that this will help absorb two most hazardous arsenic species and other heavy metal ions and can be easily integrated into existing water purification systems in households

The team of innovators from IIT Roorkee who developed this prototype is Prof Abhijit Maiti, Department of Polymer and Process Engineering, Dr Anil Kumar, and Dr Nishant Jain.

Prof ML Sharma, Acting Director, IIT Roorkee, said, “The arsenic problem is considered a global problem, as many countries from America and Africa are affected by arsenic and other heavy metals in the aquifer. This innovation will be of great benefit not just to India but to the entire world. To meet high food demand, huge amounts of arsenic-contaminated groundwater are being withdrawn and they cause surface water contamination with arsenic.”

Prof Abhijit Maiti, Department of Polymer and Process Engineering, IIT Roorkee, said, “Cheap raw materials, minimal use of chemicals, and the easy scalability of the removal process are the three pillars of this invention. This innovation has been started with consideration of environmental sustainability as ferro-manganese slag is an industrial waste and has little commercial value otherwise. About 500 kg of pelletized material has already been prepared in a single batch of chemical treatment process based on technology developed in an industrial setup as one industrial partner was associated with this project work through SERB, Indian Government, project scheme of ‘IMPRINT 2A.’ Arsenic removal experiments have successfully been done under real arsenic-contaminated water environments.”

This technology can filter 8000 liters of water and can be used for many years in a standard 4-5 members family. The conversion of this technology is easy and affordable as the adsorbent is prepared from industrial waste and has little commercial value. Currently, this technology is not available in India, and imported adsorbents available in the market are limited, and the cost is also considerably higher.

 
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