By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Ecology, Environment & Conservation -- New research on Environmental Water Research is the subject of a report. According to news originating from Haifa, Israel, by VerticalNews correspondents, research stated, "The concept of suppressing biofouling formation using an antibacterial feed spacer was investigated in a bench scale-cross flow system mimicking a spiral wound membrane configuration. An antibacterial composite spacer containing zinc oxide-nanoparticles was constructed by modification of a commercial polypropylene feed spacer using sono-chemical deposition."
Our news journalists obtained a quote from the research from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, "The ability of the modified spacers to repress biofilm development on membranes was evaluated in flow-through cells simulating the flow conditions in commercial spiral wound modules. The experiments were performed at laminar flow (Re = 300) with a 200 kDa molecular weight cut off polysulfone ultrafiltration membrane using Pseudomonas putida S-12 as model biofilm bacteria. The modified spacers reduced permeate flux decrease at least by 50% compared to the unmodified spacers (control). The physical properties of the modified spacer and biofilm development were evaluated using high resolution/energy dispersive spectrometry-scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy and confocal laser scanning microscopy imaging (HRSEM, EDS, AFM and CLSM). HRSEM images depicted significantly less bacteria attached to the membranes exposed to the modified spacer, mainly scattered and in a sporadic monolayer structure. AFM analysis indicated the influence of the modification on the spacer surface including a phase change on the upper surface."
According to the news editors, the research concluded: "Dead-live staining assay by CLSM indicated that most of the bacterial cells attached on the membranes exposed to the modified spacer were dead in contrast to a developed biofilm which was predominant in the control samples."
For more information on this research see: Impact of ZnO embedded feed spacer on biofilm development in membrane systems. Water Research, 2013;47(17):6628-6638. Water Research can be contacted at: Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd, The Boulevard, Langford Lane, Kidlington, Oxford OX5 1GB, England. (Elsevier - www.elsevier.com; Water Research - www.elsevier.com/wps/product/cws_home/309)
The news correspondents report that additional information may be obtained from A. Ronen, Technion Israel Inst Technol, Grand Water Res Inst, IL-32000 Haifa, Israel. Additional authors for this research include R. Semiat and C.G. Dosoretz.
Keywords for this news article include: Asia, Haifa, Israel, Environmental Water Research
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