Use of Magnetic Nanoparticles to remove Dispersed Nanoparticles from Aqueous Solutions

BACKGROUND: Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are important structural blocks for the preparation of composites with unique optical, electrical, and mechanical properties and their production is expected to increase significantly in the years to come. CNTs are extremely hydrophobic and prone to aggregation, and they are not readily dispersed in aqueous or non-aqueous solutions. However, recent studies have found that natural organic matter, especially its major component, humic acid (a large fraction of soil organic matter and of surface water organic matter), will tend to stabilize CNTs and facilitate the solubilization and dispersion of CNTs in the environment. The increasing use of CNTs combined with the ubiquitous presence of humic acid may pose an environmental risk.

DESCRIPTION: Researchers at the University of California, Santa Barbara have developed a novel method of permanently removing dispersed nanoparticles from aqueous solution. This new technology is superior to existing ultra- or nano-membrane filtration since it avoids the potential for clogging (fouling) of the membrane typically seen in these systems. It is also superior to approaches which rely on changes in pH or ionic strength of the solution, which are generally impractical for large-scale water treatment, and which may only result in temporary removal. This technology is simple and easy to use for most applications, it leaves no toxic residue, and it should result in removal efficiencies greater than 92% via just a single pass.


* Drinking water purification
* Ambient water remediation
* Soil remediation
* Nanoparticle and nanotube separation and purification
* Synthesis and processing of composite materials containing nanoparticles


* Permanent removal of nanoparticles
* Simple and easy to use for most applications
* Environmentally friendly – no toxic residue

This technology is available for licensing. Patent pending.

REFERENCE: 2008-318

Type of Offer: Licensing

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