WaterWorld Weekly Newscast, September 4, 2017

Sept. 5, 2017
A transcript of the WaterWorld Weekly Newscast for September 4, 2017.
How the water industry can help with Harvey aftermath; U.S. students win 2017 Stockholm Junior Water Prize; Researchers develop 'smart' graphene membrane for desalination

The following is a transcript of the WaterWorld Weekly Newscast for September 4, 2017.

Hi, I'm Angela Godwin for WaterWorld magazine, bringing you water and wastewater news headlines for the week of September 4. Coming up...

  • How the water industry can help with Harvey aftermath
  • U.S. students win 2017 Stockholm Junior Water Prize
  • Researchers develop 'smart' graphene membrane for desalination

As the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey continues to unfold, so does the impact to local water supplies -- such as has happened in Beaumont, Texas, where the local water supply has been disrupted indefinitely because of flooded pumps.

Those in the water quality industry may be wondering how they can help their colleagues in need.

The Water Environment Association of Texas is advising that all resource donations and crews work through the Texas Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network (TXWARN), which supports and promotes statewide emergency preparedness, disaster response, and mutual aid assistance for public and private water and wastewater utilities.

Your assistance could come in the form of a generator or other equipment, or people -- such as electricians -- who can help speed up restoration efforts.

If you think you can help in any way, please contact [email protected] with your name, resources or expertise, and contact information.

You can also visit txwarn.org and click on the "Incidents" tab.

Last week, two students from Manhasset, N.Y., took top honors in the 2017 Stockholm Junior Water Prize competition during World Water Week in Stockholm.

Rachel Chang and Ryan Thorpe were recognized for their project entitled, “A Novel Approach to Rapidly and Sensitively Detect and Purify Water Contaminated with Shigella, E. Coli, Salmonella and Cholera.”

The system has applications in both developing and developed regions of the world for identifying, quantifying and controlling water contaminants.

In its citation, the Jury said: “This year’s winning project embodies the fundamental principle of providing safe drinking water. The winner’s motivation is to eliminate millions of human deaths each year.”

The international Stockholm Junior Water Prize, which is sponsored by Xylem, is presented each year to students between the ages of 15 and 20 for outstanding water-related projects that focus on topics of environmental, scientific, social or technological importance.

As the benefits of graphene continue to be investigated, an international team of researchers has developed a graphene-based coating for desalination membranes that they say is more robust and scalable than current nanofiltration membrane technologies.

The hybrid membrane uses a simple spray-on technology to coat a mixture of graphene oxide and few-layered graphene in solution onto a backbone support membrane of modified polysulfone.

The membrane was able to stand up to intense cross-flow, high pressure and chlorine exposure.

Porous graphene is predicted to have 100 percent salt rejection, making it ideal for desalination. However, challenges with transfer and controlling defects has made scaling up a challenge.

The research team, which includes scientists from Japan's Shinshu University and the director of Penn State's ATOMIC Center, aims to overcome scalability issues and provide an inexpensive, high-quality membrane at manufacturing scale.

For WaterWorld magazine, I'm Angela Godwin. Thanks for watching.