HM Digital Instruments has moved its offices. The new contact information, according to managing director Charles Lee, is: 5819 Uplander Way, Culver City, CA 90230. The phone number is (310) 410-3100 and the fax is (310) 410-3106. ?

Meriden, Conn. based CUNO Inc. purchased Polymerics Inc., a small, privately owned manufacturer of carbon-based media products used in water filtration. Polymerics, of Longmont, Colo., has about 10 employees. Last year, Polymerics had sales of approximately $1 million. Terms of the transaction weren’t disclosed. ?

KDF Fluid Treatment Inc., of Three Rivers, Mich., has a new website, www.kdfft.com. It offers a detailed company history as well as information on their products and services and how they work. ?

Applied Process Technology Inc., of Conroe, Texas, was selected by the South Tahoe Public Utility District to treat drinking water contaminated by the gasoline additive MTBE. This is the second time the district has selected the product, HiPOx, to treat MTBE in its drinking water. ?

FilmTec Corp., a subsidiary of Dow Chemical Co., of Midland, Mich., plans to more than double the current square footage of its existing membrane manufacturing plant in a new facility in Minneapolis. Construction will begin on the plant in third quarter 2004. ?

Tenergy Christ Water LLC, of New Britain, Conn., was selected by Genzyme, a leading biotechnology company, to provide a new 15-gallon-per-minute USP water system for a manufacturing facility in Framingham, Mass. The water treatment system will be shipped in August and be fully operational by the end of September. ?

investorIdeas.com has launched a new investor portal for the diet, beverage and health industry, www.beveragestocks.com. It features industry news, links, a list of public companies in the sector and featured company Creative Enterprises International Inc. and its “Skinny Water,” an enhanced diet water. ?

ABS Pumps and Pumpex, both divisions of the Cardo Pump Group, have merged their global operations into ABS Pumps. ?

Los Angeles-based Teledyne Technologies Inc. and Isco Inc., of Lincoln, Neb., jointly announced Isco shareholders approved the sale of the company to Teledyne. The merger was to be complete June 18. Isco is a leading producer of water quality monitoring products such as wastewater samplers and open channel flow meters. ?

HydroFlo Inc., of Raleigh, N.C., is pursuing research and development grants from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Hydroflo has submitted an application to Central Contractor Registration, a division of the Department of Homeland Security, and created a division within the company to assist state and local governments. ?

Water has definitely gone to the dogs, according to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Schmoozing thirsty canines and the owners who love them, at least three companies—Pet Refresh, K-9 Quencher and Dog Water—now sell bottled or packaged water exclusively for man’s best friend, touting special flavors, vitamins and mineral additives. ?

Lindsay Manufacturing Africa (Pty) Ltd, a subsidiary of Lindsay Manufacturing Co., of Omaha, Neb., acquired Stettyn, a manufacturer of center pivots in Bloemfontein, South Africa. Stettyn specializes in standard height, four-inch pivot systems, a new market segment for Lindsay. Terms of the transaction weren’t disclosed. ?


NSF/ANSI Standard 58 now includes perchlorate protocol
On July 19, NSF International added perchlorate to the list of chemicals that drinking water treatment units can be tested against. The new requirements are under NSF/ANSI Standard 58; Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Treatment Systems. The U.S. EPA continues to study perchlorate, which is both naturally occurring and a manmade chemical found in propellants used in rocket fuel, missiles and fireworks which may pose serious health risks to consumers. EPA’s draft analysis of perchlorate toxicity is that perchlorate’s disruption of iodide uptake is the key event leading to changes in development (both prenatal and postnatal) or tumor formation. The new protocol was developed by the NSF Joint Committee on Drinking Water Treatment Units and reviewed by the organization’s Council for Public Health Consultants. Both groups will continue to evaluate perchlorate and its impact on humans. An updated list of water treatment devices that comply with the new perchlorate reduction testing protocol is available at www.nsf.org/certified/dwtu In addition, results of federally-funded perchlorate treatment research managed by the American Water Works (Association) Research Foundation (AWWARF) are available at http://www.awwarf.org/research/TopicsAndProjects/topicSnapShot.aspx?Topic=Prchlte.

Frost assesses meters, chemical markets
Two new studies released in June from market research company Frost & Sullivan’s Palo Alto, Calif., office look at opportunities in the water metering and chemical water treatment markets.

The first report, “North American Utility Meter Market,” anticipates that market to grow from $959.5 billion in 2003 to $1.25 trillion in 2010, driven largely by changing end-user needs and new market participants focusing on product innovations that also upset the current pricing equilibrium. Communications-enabled, solid-state power meters already compete with the electromechanical meters that well-established incumbents offer with added communications modules. Among those companies mentioned are AMCO, Badger Meter, GE, Ivensys and Itron.

In the second, “U.S. Market for Water Treatment Chemicals,” competition also is expected to intensify as water treatment chemical manufacturers woo a small client base that’s exerting pressure on suppliers for low prices and one-stop solutions to meet needs for global expansion. Small suppliers likely will succumb to acquisitions, thus shrinking customer base and profit margins. Frost estimates the market will grow from $4.28 billion in 2003 to $5.28 billion by 2010, stressing the importance of R&D investment for technically innovative products and new areas of application for existing products—all within regulatory limits. Smaller market participants are hindered by lack of means for heavy investments and a major challenge is retaining market share once patents expire and cheaper copies of product flood the market.

Chemical manufacturers face stiff competition from Asian counterparts that cost effectively copy products. Among companies mentioned are Akzo Nobel, Albermarle, Arch Chemicals, Ashland, Barnebey Sutcliffe, BASF, Bayer, Calgon Carbon, ChemTreat, Ciba, CPL Carbon Link, Cytec, Ecolabs, GE Water Technologies, Graver, Great Lakes Chemical, IMC Global, Ionics, Kemira, Kinetico, MeadWestvaco, Morton International, Nalco, NORIT Americas, PICA USA, PPG, Rohm and Haas, Solutia, Solvay, Tetra Technologies, Dow and USFilter.

Homeland security gets new tool
The Mobile Emergency Filtration System (MEFS) of UltraStrip Systems Inc., of Stuart, Fla., was tested and received a verification report from the USEPA through its Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) Program coordinated by NSF International. The MEFS is a portable, self-contained wastewater treatment system designed for flexibility to treat contaminants from biological or chemical terrorist attacks for use in homeland security. With one or two operators, it will treat wastewater from decontamination operations involving highly chlorinated water or chemical agent decontamination to meet surface water discharge or reuse criteria.

UltraStrip also develops and manufactures robotic solutions to environmental problems in the surface preparation and coatings removal industry. Its robotic water jetting systems provide an environmentally safe coatings removal process in both heavy marine and above ground storage tank applications. UltraStrip systems have been used on the aircraft carrier USS Eisenhower, the USS Cole—the Navy destroyer attacked in Yemen in October 2000, the USS Doyle and USS Shreveport; Carnival and NCL cruise ships, as well as in the Lisnave Ship Yard in Portugal, one of the world’s busiest for the heavy marine industry.

Millipore aids training lab
Billerica, Mass-based Millipore has provided water treatment equipment to the PDA Training and Research Institute (PDA-TRI), of Bethesda, Md., which provides worldwide education, training and applied research in pharmaceutical sciences and associated technologies. This includes about 130 courses a year for scientists involved in the development and manufacturing of quality pharmaceutical products, as well as individuals in industry, government and academia.

As such, PDA-TRI utilizes leading technology and equipment such as Millipore’s Elix® and Milli-Q® Gradient systems in its laboratories, where it’s critical to work with an ultrapure water system that eliminates additional contamination concerns. Millipore’s systems help eliminate organic contaminants and reduce bacterial counts in these applications. Millipore’s Elix system combines pretreatment, RO and EDI purification technologies in a compact design for consistent pure water quality. Analytical-grade water from the Elix system meets specifications for Type II water defined by CAP, ISO 3696/BS3997, NCCLS and ASTM. Its Milli-Q Gradient system incorporates a high-precision resistivity meter and a built-in A10® TOC monitor for complete water quality monitoring.

New system debuts in Calif.
The Interim Water Purification Facility (IWPF) is currently operational and will be sending purified water to a seawater intrusion barrier in Orange County, Calif. This purified water is injected along the coast to keep the Pacific Ocean out of Orange County’s groundwater basin. The IWPF is part of the Groundwater Replenishment (GWR) System, a joint project by the Orange County Water District and Orange County Sanitation District, which will take highly treated sewer water currently released into the ocean and—using the same technologies that purify food, medicines and bottled water—create a new supply of very high quality water to use as protection for Orange County’s groundwater basin and augment the county’s groundwater supplies. A preliminary phase of the GWR System, the IWPF is a smaller microfiltra-tion, reverse osmosis and ultraviolet light disinfection water purification facility producing water for the seawater barrier. A larger advanced water purification facility is slated to go online in 2007, producing 70 million gallons of water per day.

Cooler sales up in E. Europe
The old Iron Curtain countries are thirsty for treated water. For proof, one need look only to Eastern Europe’s bottled water cooler market, which saw more than three quarters of a million total units installed across the region in 2003—a 26 percent jump from 2002, according to the fourth report on the topic from Zenith International, a UK-based drinks consultancy. The report from the Bath, England-based firm profiles 15 countries and 72 companies, offering analysis and commentary.

Roughly 70 percent of the coolers were electric, with the balance split between ceramic dispensers or hand pumps. At over 700 million liters, 2003 sales through coolers have risen to eight percent of total bottled water consumption, compared to four percent in 1999. Poland is still the leading country with 47 percent volume share, followed by Russia at 28 percent, the Czech Republic at five percent and the Ukraine at four percent. Romania showed the fastest growth in 2003, jumping to fifth place.

Major players Danone and Nestlé Waters have progressively increased their commitment to the region. Eden Springs, which bought Rent a Cooler operations in the Baltic States alongside Ukrainian Springs in 2001, has since formed a joint venture with Groupe Danone.  In February 2003 Nestlé consolidated its position as the top East European operator through the acquisition of ClearWater Moscow, adding to its earlier Saint Springs purchase and its lead in Poland.

“Although the Polish market is approaching maturity and has experienced a slowdown in growth, younger markets such as Romania and Croatia are advancing more rapidly,” commented Zenith research director Gary Roethen-baugh.  “European Union enlargement opens a new window of opportunity for distributors in both the West and East, encouraging them to establish subsidiaries in neighbouring countries.  Thus the potential for the East European bottled water cooler industry remains huge.”

Zenith expects total cooler numbers to exceed 1,750,000 by 2008, with the majority of new placements coming from electric machines. On this basis, sales through coolers should pass the 1,000 million liter mark in 2007.

EPA showcases arsenic removal
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (USEPA) National Arsenic Treatment Demonstration Project evaluated a commercially available adsorption technology for its ability to remove arsenic from drinking water June 22 at a site in Brown City, Mich.

The site is one of 12 nationwide chosen to participate in Phase 1 of the USEPA project, which evaluates the efficacy of drinking water treatment technologies, process modifications, and engineering approaches at various host sites for achieving compliance with the new federal arsenic standard of a maximum contamination level of 10 parts per billion (ppb) in drinking water. Brown City is one of more than 160 communities in eastern Michigan that is affected by arsenic. Arsenic levels in its drinking water were measured at 19 ppb prior to installation and start-up of the arsenic removal treatment technology.

Among the sponsors of the event were Severn Trent Services, AdEdge Technologies, Boss Engineering and Hamlett Environmental Technologies. Severn Trent makes the technology being evaluated—the SORB 33™ arsenic removal technology and Bayoxide® E33 media. Bayoxide E33 is a crystalline granular ferric oxide media, designed for Severn Trent Services by Bayer AG, with a high capacity for arsenic. Additional Phase 1 sites where SORB 33 and Bayoxide E33 are being tested include Anthony, N.M.; Nambé Pueblo, N.M.; Rim Rock, Ariz.; Stevensville, Md.; and Rollinsford, N.H.

International

AquaDrops claim holds no water
Sweets confectioner Masterfoods, formerly M&M/Mars, was told to remove the main claims from its advertising for the new AquaDrops mints after they were rejected by the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority as misleading due to complaints the advertising could encourage consumers to use sweets as a water substitute.

When AquaDrops was launched earlier this year, the company claimed to have created a new category of “hydrating sweet” and headlined its advertising with the slogan “instant hydration.” Europe’s leading drinks consultancy Zenith International found this too hard to swallow, complaining the advertising was misleading and irresponsible. “A solid sweet cannot provide hydration,” said Zenith chairman Richard Hall.

Zenith’s complaint was followed by similar concerns from the Natural Mineral Water Association as well as members of the public. Last year, Zenith won a ruling against misleading statements by Vauxhall Motors in a national campaign comparing the cost of fuel with water.

WEDECO news
Düsseldorf-based IKB Deutsche Industriebank, the Frankfurt-based KFW bank group and the German branch of Natexis Banques Populaires in Dusseldorf have terminated the note agreement for a total of EUR 15 million with immediate effect. The note agreement was originally concluded with WEDECO AG on 17 December 2002. The reason given was non-adherence to two financial ratios for fiscal year 2003 named as criteria in the note contract. The note agreement was originally to run until December 2009. As majority shareholder of WEDECO AG, ITT Industries will assume the refinancing of the terminated note, so that the company’s liquidity is not impaired. WEDECO AG reports that the volume of ultraviolet disinfection came to approximately 230 million € in 1997 and is predicted to reach approximately 1,150 million € by the year 2005.

Marotta Controls renames two subsidiaries
New Jersey-based Marotta Controls, Inc., a global innovator of advanced fluid control solutions for the marine, defense and aerospace markets, has changed the names of its two European subsidiaries. Devtec, the company’s Irish branch, has been renamed Marotta Ireland and its United Kingdom subsidiary, Polyflex Space, is now Marotta UK The management of each company remains unchanged. Marotta Ireland and Marotta UK have been combined under the Marotta group’s umbrella to become the company’s European center of operations. The combined entities ensure that Marotta is able to provide an extended range of high-end, space-qualified, fluid-control products and structural engineering solutions in a timely manner to the European and World Aerospace markets. Marotta designs, develops and manufactures fluid control systems, valves, actuators and electronic controllers for military, commercial aerospace, space and industrial markets.

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