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NueEarth, Inc. Subsidiary
NueEarth provides environmental management solutions and water purification techniques using a mobile electron beam accelerator unit which creates high-energy electrons that produce free radicals in the wastewater to decompose organic compounds or pollutants.
The company has identified a number of different markets for this particle accelerator technology, including the removal of pollutants from wastewater, drinking water, municipal sludge and water that’s contaminated by the fracking process.
There is an urgent demand for reuse of reclaimed municipal and industrial wastewater, as well as of remediation of water resources contaminated by industry and agriculture. A major problem in wastewater treatment is that industrial wastewaters are usually mixed with municipal wastewaters. Conventional drinking water treatment processes were not designed to remove trace quantities of pharmaceuticals, such as antibiotics and endocrine disrupting chemicals. Given the increasing number of reports of its presence in the environment, it is essential that alternative technologies be developed that can effectively degrade or remove these compounds.
One of the most promising alternative technologies is use of e-beam accelerators for purification of water through advanced oxidation/reduction process, which is induced by high-energy electrons blasted into biologically or chemically polluted water. E-beam treatment may be combined with other advanced oxidation techniques such as addition of ozone, (O3) which further enhances the effectiveness of the pollutant degradation. The key distinction of the e-beam treatment technology compared to various filter-based technologies is its advanced reduction-oxidation process induced by e-beam. It results in an ultimate destruction of dangerous chemicals in the treated medium, while passive filter-based technologies retain the unwanted contaminants removed from polluted water. However, using e-beam accelerators for chemical purification of drinking water, municipal and industrial wastewaters, is still considered an emerging technology despite multiple pilot plants and a few full-scale treatment facilities established around the world.
The application of electron beam processing for drinking water, wastewater and groundwater treatment offers a cost effective process that insures adequate availability of that resource worldwide. Potable water is the cornerstone of development and essential for sustainable growth.
The first consideration for drinking water is to produce water that has been disinfected. As mentioned above, the most common process is disinfection of drinking water by chlorine and some chlorination by- products may be carcinogenic or have other toxicological effects associated with consumption. Also, new pathogens are emerging that are not easily inactivated by chlorine. Therefore, the water treatment industry worldwide is eagerly trying to discover alternatives to disinfection by chlorine.
In addition to disinfection, there is an increasing problem with the presence of toxic chemicals in source waters (waters used as sources of drinking water). These source waters may be surface waters or groundwater. Surface waters often are influenced by the discharge of treated wastewater and the biological and chemical quality compromised. Ground waters used as a source of drinking water may also be contaminated. In general, if the quality of groundwater is compromised, it is the result of chemical contamination.
Waste water remediation by e-beam processing is promising due to a number of features that make this an attractive process for commercial application. Several advantages in the application of electron beam processing are:
The underlying scientific basis for the application process to solving water pollution problems is as well established as any technology that is already in use. However, large scale commercialization of the e-beam technology has been relatively slow, so very few full-scale e-beam waste water treatment plants currently exist.