Wednesday, 23 Sep 2020

Textile Wastewater finally seeing the Light of day!

Textile wastewater is not easy to treat. The most difficult pollutant to reduce and remove are salts, or total dissolved solids, resulting from dyes. Any treatment option for textile effluent is an elaborate and expensive affair. For most textile industries, it is a battle between doing the right thing and following norms set by their clients, and diminishing profit margins that are already
affected by market vagaries. However, there may be some good news in the horizon.

Recently, I came across a news article about a former IITian who uses microbes to breakdown the chemicals in textile wastewater and produce electricity. Two birds in one stone!! You can find a link to the new item: https://in.apparelresources.com/business-news/sustainability/former-iitian-develops-technology-generates-electricity-textile-waste-water/

The use of Microbial Fuel Cells (MFC) for breaking down organic matter in wastewater, while producing electricity has been a topic of research for a couple of decades. In addition to wastewater treatment, the capacity of MFCs to produce electricity finds uses as a potential to sensor of organic content in wastewater.

For now though, the use of MFCs to treat textile wastewater will be very useful as a (hopefully!) cost-effective solution to traditional technologies. While the technology seems to be in a nascent stage, it could have a lot of potential in treating the wastewater from textile and dyeing shops, particularly the small and medium ones. We hope to see this technology being used commercially in the near future.

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