Imagine if you could create clean water from any source – no matter how dirty – in just one step. Australian scientists have managed to do just that with a new filter made from soybean-based graphene film. It’s so effective that it can make even the filthiest water drinkable – and it’s simpler, cheaper and more environmentally-friendly than other methods out there.
The filter, called Graphair, is made from a graphene film with microscopic channels that trap pollutants while letting clean water through. Scientists at CSIRO were able to develop a graphene-based film that is cheaper and more environmentally-friendly than typical graphene. It could have real implications for the 2.1 billion people who don’t have access to clean, safe drinking water.
What makes Graphair so exciting is that it doesn’t require a series of steps to get water clean. The problem with other filtration systems is that they can get clogged with chemical and oil-based pollutants, which must be removed before you can even start filtering. With just four tools (heat, Graphair, a membrane filter and a water pump), you can simply run the water through a filter and you are good to go. Researchers even used the system on the water in the Sydney Harbor and it came out clean enough to drink.
Images via CSIRO