Plant-Based Waste as Biocoagulant for Waste Water Treatment

Technology Overview

The technology was developed from a plant waste material and inexpensive natural resource: g.Hylocereus which offers a cost effective solution for wastewater treatment. Conventional coagulants commonly employed are chemical-based, typically metal formulated (alum and PAC) which are cost effective but have sludge management issues and potential health issues from metal residuals. Conventional coagulants have issues such as excessive sludge formation, consumption of alkalinity and producing schedule waste. This technology would be able to avoid some of these issues and still ensure meeting required reductions in contaminants. This invention explored the usage of foliage of g. Hylocereus as an alternative source of coagulant. g. Hylocereus is commonly called dragon fruit, Pitaya or Pitahaya which belongs to family of night blooming cactus. This novel biocoagulant is a natural, biodegradable and more importantly non-toxic alternative to conventional coagulants. Through the production of a compact sludge, sludge volume is reduced and solids concentration rises. The sludge handling and dewatering requirements will also decrease which allows for further savings in operation in addition to the revenue from the fertilizer production. Thus this technology could be easily incorporated into a zero discharge wastewater treatment system. This invention supports the principle of sustainable development as it turns waste into a valuable resource for the benefit of society.

Technology Features & Specifications

  • The invention is derived from a natural and renewable source
  • The biomaterial creates a biodegradable and more importantly nontoxic sludge.
  • Does not create as much waste compared to the metallic salts as the sludge produced using this coagulant is more compact.
  • The active components are able to function as both a coagulant and flocculant. The implementation of the bio-material would allow for chemical savings through the elimination of the flocculant from the water treatment process. 
  • Product can be preserved more than 1 year at temperature of 4 oC
  • Physical properties based on 1% solution:
    1. ?Density: 1.0032 g/mL
    2. pH: 5.96
    3. Viscosity: 31.6 mPa s
    4. Zeta Potential: -24.9 mV    

Potential Applications

The biomaterial would be applicable to the municipal wastewater treatment and industrial wastewater streams with high BOD such as food waste or meat processing waste.

Market Trends and Opportunities

The water treatment chemicals market size in terms of value is projected to witness a CAGR of 5.8% between 2014 and 2019 to reach $33,289 million by 2019. Asia-Pacific accounted for the largest share in water treatment chemicals market in 2013. Major growth in the Asia-Pacific region is expected from the power generation and oil & gas applications. The growth of the water treatment chemicals market is primarily triggered by the huge demand from the Asia-Pacific region and the growing end-use industries. The demand for water treatment chemicals have increased substantially from emerging economies such as Brazil, China, and India. The increasing stringency of the environmental norms is forcing municipal corporations and industries to explore water treatment solutions which in-turn are boosting the demand for water treatment chemicals.


Customer Benefits

The major advantages of this invention are:

  • Biodegradable and effective either as coagulant or flocculants.
  • Non-Toxic
  • No-Physical Hazard
  • Metal-Free
  • Cost Competitive
  • Reducing the operating cost of water treatment facility
  • Environmental friendly
  • Low sludge formation

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