Water Filtering at the Nano Scale

February 20th, 2014 by

Researchers at the University of Manchester in the UK have developed a one-atom-wide graphene-oxide (GO) capillaries by building multilayer GO membranes (laminates).  The new GO filters have a mesh that allows them to distinguish between atomic species that are only a few percent different in size.  The filters block passage of ions (charged atoms) that are larger than 0.9 nanometers).  The water filtration is as fast and as precise as one could possibly hope for such narrow capillaries.  Now the researchers want to control the graphene mesh size and reduce it below nine Angstroms to filter out even the smallest salts like in seawater.  Their ultimate goal is to make a filter device that allows a glass of drinkable water made from seawater after a few minutes of hand pumping.

Source:  Eureka Alert new story