Blackburn & Assoc. receives first patent for slow sand filter

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BELLINGHAM, WA, Jan. 5, 2006 -- Humphrey Blackburn, founder of Blackburn and Assoc., a Washington-based water filtration equipment company, has received his first patent for the company's package plant slow sand filter used by homes and rural villages.

The patent was awarded for the company's smallest filter, the SSF/x. The SSF/x slow sand filter is for use in treating drinking water for homes or rural villages, with features providing simpler on-site assembly, preset maximum flow, easy monitoring of pressure head loss, protection of piping, and a harrowing system for cleaning.

The filter employs a novel hydraulic scheme which places most pipe and plumbing within the filter vessel, and also uses a device that combines flow control, pressure measurement, freeze protection, and anti-siphon features. This in combination with a relatively shallow supernatant level provides for consistent reliable operation, easy maintenance, and reasonably long filter runs as deemed very desirable in remote rural locations.

The U.S. patent office found that these features are significant improvements over prior slow sand filter systems and present a filter that is significantly more trouble free and reliable to install and operate than has been available to this point.

Features included in the SSF/x demonstrate Blackburn & Associates' mission to provide non-chemical drinking water systems that are economical, efficient, appropriate, and available to a wide variety of locations, peoples, and applications.

Blackburn & Associates (www.slowsandfilter.com or www.bluefuturefilters.com), a consulting and design firm, was established by founder Humphrey Blackburn in 1996 to develop water filtration systems to homes and small communities worldwide. Blackburn, who has 25 years of experience with water systems, founded California-based manufacturing company Blue Future Filters in 2003 to manufacture his designs in the United States and internationally.

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