In 2020, EPA’s Tiny Business Innovation Investigation (SBIR) application released an open solicitation inviting undertaking pitches from small organizations developing environmentally advantageous systems. General public health and fitness topics bundled for each- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) destruction, ethylene oxide checking, drinking water reuse, and sustainable building supplies.
In March of 2021, 25 Section I recipients have been declared and awarded $100,000 each and every to develop and commercialize their principles via August 31, 2021. In January 2022, the EPA awarded 9 of them up to $400,000 of added Section II funding to build on Stage I development. Here we look at 4 of these nine corporations, how their systems function, and the ultimate targets for the solutions.
1. Aquagga, Inc.
Progression Getting Funded
Hydrothermal alkaline treatment (HALT) system for destroying PFAS in contaminated groundwater.
Alaskan-based drinking water cure technological innovation enterprise Aquagga (‘Aqua’ + ‘Quagga’) is functioning to handle a very hot market topic: the “PFAS destruction challenge.” It makes use of a bolt-on platform and alkaline hydrothermal remedy to remove PFAS from water supplies, converting toxic wet squander into clean up drinking water.
How It Functions
PFAS are persistent and remarkably recalcitrant environmental pollutants and bioaccumulative harmful toxins. Aquagga is functioning on effective and inexpensive units that clear away and ruin h2o offer PFAS at the end of their beneficial daily life.
In Stage I, Aquagga demonstrated that a constant HALT reactor could wipe out >99.9% of whole PFAS in a contaminated liquid sample from a hearth training pit. The end result was dependable and repeatable.
Aquagga’s constant HALT reactor destruction tests showed more quickly destruction rates than equivalent batch reactor devices. Aquagga also created a pilot-scale HALT program and determined viable sites to check it. In this Section II undertaking, Aquagga is partnering with the University of Washington to create a pilot-scale HALT reactor to dispose of PFAS-contaminated damp wastes.
The HALT process will be ready to transition in the direction of contracted commercial deployments at energetic PFAS remediation web-sites by the stop of the Section II task in 2022 and 2023.
2. Hyperion Analytical LLC
Progression Currently being Funded
A totally automatic analytical program for N-nitrosamines to assist drinking water reuse applications.
Hyperion Analytical LLC was recognized to create and commercialize impressive scientific and analytical instrument technologies. Principals Duncan Griffiths and William Bernt have about six many years of combined knowledge in particle characterization.
Trace organic and natural compounds are a significant challenge for water reuse. N-nitrosamines and possible carcinogen N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) are two compounds that present in taken care of wastewater.
Several ingesting h2o treatment method plants and other industries that keep track of for N-nitrosamines stand to profit from this rapid, trustworthy, and automated technologies as well.
In addition to facilitating risk-free water cure to gain the natural environment, this technologies works by using appreciably a lot less poisonous solvent for sample extraction and small other reagents.
How it Is effective
The two functional, laboratory-centered prototypes built all through Period I out-shined commercially readily available mass spectrometer-centered devices at measuring N-nitrosamines in sample matrices. Extra engineering really should make an admirably industry-all set commercial item.
Section II consists of extending the lessen detection limit further more into regulatory selection and thoroughly noticing the probable for constant, unattended, on the web operation. The product or service ought to meet up with or exceed the overall performance and speed of laboratory methods for a fraction of the charge.
Innovative water cure services are the great clients. Purported rewards consist of a lot quicker analyses, no need to have for extremely qualified personnel, smaller sample and reagent quantity necessities, and tools money charges cost savings of up to 75%.
3. Pure Blue Tech Inc
Progression Staying Funded
Anti-fouling membranes built-in with polyvinylidene fluoride transducers to advertise successful water reuse.
Pure Blue Tech Inc. has been designing, acquiring, producing, and implementing membrane systems due to the fact 1969. Their self-cleansing membrane elements allow industrial providers and municipalities to tackle drinking water and wastewater with a lot less revenue, upkeep, chemical substances, downtime, and squander disposal.
They are at this time creating h2o-procedure membranes built-in with slim polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) transducers.
How it will work
Ultrasonic PVDF transducers embedded into membrane systems preemptively mitigate fouling by disrupting cake layer development, particle agglomeration, salt and silica precipitation, and focus polarization.
The lessened membrane fouling afforded by ultrasonic engineering makes membrane servicing and replacement more reasonably priced, will increase flux throughput as nicely as the lifestyle of reverse osmosis membranes. This innovation can decrease fouling up to fifty percent and lessen the require for pricey pretreatment techniques.
A tiny prototype crossflow membrane process built and evaluated in the course of Stage I concluded that ultrasound generation by PVDF transducers correctly minimized membrane fouling.
EPA awarded Pure Blue Tech Inc. $400,000 for Phase II, as environmental rewards involve reductions in cleaning chemical usage and discharge volumes.
Pure Blue Tech’s innovation applies to the new create and retrofit h2o reuse marketplaces and the goal municipal consumers are wastewater treatment method vegetation with Wastewater Reverse Osmosis (WWRO) ideas. If this technological innovation succeeds, municipal amenities could minimize all round techniques money fees and space specifications by practically 50%.
Industrial shoppers are wastewater plant homeowners, and operators fully commited to reusing, sustainability, and procedure enhancements are suitable prospects.
4. Triangle Environmental Well being Initiative, LLC
Technological improvement currently being funded: Zero-waste method to increase chemical electricity possible in wastewater and generate three worthwhile reuse output streams.
Triangle Environmental was established in 2016 “with a mission to offer water, sanitation and cleanliness (Clean) primarily based solutions” internationally to people without accessibility to good sanitation.
Getting older sewer infrastructure and improved sewer need signify additional onsite wastewater cure programs (OWTS) in the US. These simple techniques arrive with the inconvenience of emptying and transporting the concentrated brine streams they create.
ZeWa lowers the chemical power prospective contained in wastewater to deliver zero-waste and a few precious reuse output streams: clean up water for non-potable reuse, concentrated fertilizer, and Class A biosolids for neighborhood soil modification.
How it performs
The proposed ZeWa technique eradicates brine streams and employs the chemical power prospective manufactured in wastewater to change it into clean water for non-potable reuse, handled fertilizer for local nutrient offer, and Class A biosolids for local
For each the task description, “The ZeWa program is made up of three subsystems 1. sludge treatment method and electrical power recovery subsystem (STERS), 2. drinking water recovery subsystem (WRS) and 3. nutrient restoration subsystem (NRS). The team previously possesses purposeful prototypes of the WRS and NRS for testing.”
For Stage I, a lab-scale ZeWa technique was created and analyzed with actual blackwater (human urine, feces, and flush h2o) and greywater (laundry and lavatory sink). The program manufactured ultimate stable and liquid outputs which achieved nationwide and international expectations for reuse (EPA, NSF, and ISO).
In Phase II, Section I lessons are remaining utilized to developing, creating, and screening the updated solids managing procedure.
Findings indicate that the ZeWa program could mix greywater and blackwater streams for straightforward and productive household procedure. As soon as done, the system will be piloted at a ideal wastewater procedure plant, with a lot more check websites to comply with.
Far more on the EPA SBIR Personal loan Program
These are just four of 9 great emerging technologies the EPA is investing in to tackle environmental challenges. Need to they be successful, the personal savings recognized would significantly outweigh the expense, so we enthusiastically observe their progress.